fall fest 4

Cooler temperatures, less traffic, fall is certainly a great time to visit the Crystal Coast. But in October, there is plenty more to sing the praises of as well. It is festival time in Eastern North Carolina – from fish to flowers to kites – a time for celebration, a time for fellowship and a time for fun.

The historic streets of downtown Swansboro host the 61st annual Mullet Festival on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 10-11, as it pays homage to the bait fish that can also provide a tasty meal. The festival began as a small community cookout and has blossomed into an event that is part of the small town’s heritage and culture. An estimated 20,000 visitors invade for two days of festivities, which is quite a draw considering the coastal village is home to less than 2,000 residents.

Thinks kick off Saturday morning with a parade on Hwy 24, leading the way to downtown Swansboro where visitors will find an array of arts and crafts vendors, live entertainment and inflatable rides for the youngsters. Don’t forget to stop in for the mullet toss. This year’s entertainment includes Jim Quick & Coastline Band, The Tams, the Holiday Band and others.

To learn more about the Mullet Festival, visit www.swansborofestivals.com.

Scheduled the same weekend, Oct. 10-11, is one of New Bern’s largest annual events, MumFest, featuring more than 300 commercial and nonprofit exhibitors, including pottery, crafts and art. Some might say the temptation is too much when they discover dozens of booths filled with a wide variety of savory foods guaranteed to tempt anyone’s appetite.

With two full days of entertainment, MumFest brings a variety of free entertainment including live bands, dance troupes, magicians, roving street performers, face painters and mermen and mermaids. In addition to all of the free entertainment there’s a riverfront amusement park with lots of exciting rides, including a waterfront Ferris Wheel.

Throughout the weekend be sure to catch the New Bern Police Department’s K-9 demonstrations, Down to Earth Aerial Acrobatics, Yo Yo Guy Comedy, the Purina Incredible Dog Team with canine athletes, the Silver Drummer Girl, a huge model train show and other favorites.

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