Events in Suwannee County are sprinkled throughout the calendar year and some of the best occur in the fall and winter. From cornbread competitions to music festivals, holiday spectaculars and so much more, here are some of the best annual events Suwannee County has to offer for an unforgettable experience and one-of-a-kind memories.
The annual Suwannee River Riding Club Rodeo is the fifth oldest rodeo in the state with crowd-favorite events like bull riding, barrel racing, team roping, and other rodeo spectacles presented throughout the weekend. The Branford event includes calf roping, steer wrestling, and bronc riding alongside concession stands, new LED lighting, and bleachers.
Suwannee Roots Revival at the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park is a four-day, family-friendly festival that celebrates the roots of Americana music. Live music from talented musicians from across the country are routinely present, playing genres from bluegrass and folk to country and rock – so there’s sure to be something for everyone.
In addition to the diverse music lineup, workshops, jam sessions, art, and other activities are also available to celebrate the rich, Americana culture.
The harvest festival at the Branford Farm Stand is a delightful event that celebrates the beauty of the autumn season every weekend during October. This charming festival offers a cornucopia of activities for visitors of all ages. From picking your own pumpkins, to wandering through the crop maze, and enjoying tractor hayrides through the fields, there’s something for everyone.
Savor tacos and churros from the farm stand restaurant which also offers an array of farm-fresh products and handmade goods. Mums, antique tractors, and the pumpkin house create a warm and inviting atmosphere to create cherished memories.
October means it’s rodeo time in Live Oak! Suwannee Parks & Recreation hosts the annual Suwannee River Roundup Pro Rodeo at the Bob Holmes Covered Arena at the Suwannee County Fairgrounds. The weekend features bull riding, bronc riding, barrel racing, steer wrestling, breakaway roping, calf roping and team roping.
In addition to concessions for all patrons, there is a hospitality tent for VIP ticket holders. Gates open at 6 pm. and the rodeo begins at 7:30. Tickets are available at the gate. Adult tickets are $10, kid tickets for ages 12 and under are $5, and children under age 5 get in for free.
The biggest music festival in Suwannee County is consistently Suwannee Hulaween at Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park. Headlined by the String Cheese Incident, dozens of other musical acts also take the stage for this colorful event that attracts around 20,000 to 30,000 music lovers and over 50 bands and musicians across multiple genres.
Hulaween was named by Billboard as one of the 11 best Halloween parties to attend in 2018 and one of the top 50 festivals in 2022. Hulaween has also been listed among The Best 300 Festivals in the World by EverFest and was named one of the Top 12 Music Venues To See In The US Before You Die.
Are your children fascinated by airplanes? Take them to the Suwannee County Airport for this exciting event. This one-day festival is an opportunity for kids to dive into the world of aviation and explore potential careers. Kids ages 8 – 17 can even enjoy a free flight but a parent must be present during the festival. In addition, there are vendors and food to enjoy. Best of all admission is free so come make memories with your young aviation enthusiasts.
The first annual Wellborn Cornbread Festival was held in the fall of 2021 to recover from the pandemic’s impact on local festivals and events but has quickly become a community favorite. This one-day event is hosted by the Wellborn Community Center, the same organization behind the beloved Blueberry Festival held in the spring. The Cornbread Festival is a one-day event featuring a chili and cornbread cook-off; arts and crafts vendors; live music, food vendors, and cornhole tournaments.
The annual Old Tyme Farm Days and Swap Meet at the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park is a Thanksgiving weekend tradition that transports visitors back in time to experience life on the farm. The weekend features live demonstrations and interactive exhibits; antique equipment and exhibits; sawmill operation; blacksmithing; syrup making; arts and crafts; and sled pulls.
Woodworking, face painting, live music and so much more takes place on Friday and Saturday. For an even more festive experience, the Thursday before the event features a Thanksgiving dinner for just $10 a person.
For a little over a month, the Spirit of the Suwannee Music Park transforms into a winter wonderland filled with glistening lights, activities and magical memories. Suwannee Lights is a drive-thru and walk-thru experience decorated with over 12 million Christmas lights. Aside from the twinkling displays, guests can also experience a trip to Frosty’s village for campfires, hot chocolate, and s’mores; a tour of the craft village; a visit with Santa and the sounds of live music.
Christmas on the Square is without a doubt one of the largest Christmas arts and craft festivals in Florida. The yuletide festivities begin the first evening with a Jingle Bell Fun Run/Walk, a holiday movie in the park, and the annual tree lighting. Snow also makes a weather-defying appearance every year on the second day for snowball fights and sledding.
The third day of the event welcomes over 200 vendors who flood downtown Live Oak with arts and crafts booths selling handmade goods, treats and wares; food; agriculture exhibits and live entertainment. A fireworks show and a lighted Christmas Parade of Lights help round out the spectacular event that continues to get bigger and better every year.
In December, Heritage Park and Gardens becomes a holiday haven during this one-day event. Games, face painting, train rides, and other activities for kids are free. Food trucks are also present to satisfy your hunger. Guests at the Yuletide occasion can partake in tours of the historic estate, which is also beautifully decorated for the season, for $5 per person.
Whether you are seeking entertainment or a memorable experience with your family our events calendar is your key to a world of opportunities. There you will find the dates and times for upcoming events that cater to a variety of interests. Don’t miss out on the chance to be part of these unforgettable occasions. Visit our events calendar today and see what’s coming up next!
Hayli Zuccola has been a freelance writer for the last eight years for both digital and print publications across north central Florida. She enjoys traveling, finding the best food spots and spending time with her pets. You can find her latest adventures on Instagram @hayztravels.
If it’s interesting, relevant or just plain awesome and it’s happening in Suwannee County, we’ll make sure to tell you all about it!