Food and Fall Fun in Mississippi

 

What better time to indulge in the undeniably delicious tastes of Mississippi then when the temps begin to dip in fall. From fresh Gulf shrimp to farm-raised catfish, sweet pecan pies to sweet potatoes, Delta hot tamales and barbecue, you can satisfy any Southern cuisine craving you may have at the following fall festivals and culinary events.

Forks & Corks • Starkville – August 25

Held annually by the Starkville Arts Council, Forks & Corks focuses on the culinary arts in the Golden Triangle Region. Have a night out and sample the best of the culinary arts North Mississippi has to offer. Visit www.starkvillearts.org to purchase tickets

Muscadine Jubilee • Pelahatchie – September 8

Like a fine muscadine wine, the Muscadine Jubilee only gets better with age. For nearly 40 years, thousands have visited Pelahatchie to pay homage to the muscadine grape, famed ingredient in southern wines, pies and jellies. Visitors to Muscadine Park are treated to food, fun, arts and crafts, music and the famed festival Grape Stomp. $3 admission

Biloxi Seafood Festival • Biloxi – September 8-9

This seafood festival is a celebration of the City of Biloxi’s acclaimed seafood heritage. Attendees enjoy live entertainment, arts and crafts, kids activities and the best seafood on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Sunday features the Sun Herald Gumbo Championship, where attendees can taste professional and amateur gumbo from teams competing for the Peoples’ Choice and Best of Show Awards. $10 admission per day

Sweetest Chefs of the South • Ridgeland – September 10

Partake in the most indulgent party of the year at Ridgeland’s Sweetest Chefs of the South. This event features dessert tastings from 12 of the South’s A-list pastry chefs along with live music, coffee cupping, live demo stage by Food Network’s Best Baker in America winner Dwayne Ingraham, savory food bar from Visit Ridgeland, cocktails, wine and spirits, cigar bar and more. Visit www.sweetestchefs.com to purchase tickets

Soggy Sweat Craft Beer & BBQ Festival • Jackson – September 15

The Mississippi Brewer’s Guild will host the first-ever Soggy Sweat Craft Beer and BBQ Festival to celebrate all things craft beer, BBQ and music. Attendees can sample “Lucille,” a new beer created in a collaborative effort between brewers from across the state. Visit the event’s Facebook page to learn more

Chefs of the Coast • Gulfport – September 16

Dine like a star at the Hollywood-themed Chefs of the Coast event in Gulfport. For its 36th year, this culinary event will treat guests to gourmet food samplings from more than 30 Gulf Coast restaurants, a wine tasting and live music at the Warehouse, where hundreds of movie props and sets from blockbuster movies and popular television series are housed. Visit www.chefsofthecoast.org to purchase tickets

Pig Pickin’ • Cleveland – September 21-22

A Delta State University tradition thirty-two years in the making, Pig Pickin’ combines a BBQ cookout and football for one falltastic weekend. Each year, hundreds of visitors from all over travel to the Cleveland campus to tailgate, enjoy live entertainment, watch a little football and most importantly, sample some of the finest BBQ Mississippi has to serve. Tailgate is free to attend

Gumbo Festival • Jackson – September 22

Gumbo lovers rejoice. Visitors to the International Gumbo Festival in downtown Jackson are able to sample selections from more than twenty gumbo-cooking teams from across the Southeast region. Fun for the whole family, the outdoor event at Smith Park also features children’s activities, food trucks and great live music. Visit www.jacksongumbo.com to purchase tickets

Mississippi Pecan Festival • Richton – September 28-30

Treat the family to a fun-filled day at the Mississippi Pecan Festival six miles outside of Richton, Miss. Nestled under a shady canopy of a pecan grove, visitors are treated to pet parades, draft horse and stock dog demonstrations, live bluegrass music, antique booths and arts and crafts exhibits and much more during this idyllic, family-friendly day in the country. $10 admission, free for children 4 & under

Delta Hot Tamale Festival • Greenville – October 18-20

Travel to Greenville, Miss., the official Hot Tamale Capital of the World, and partake in the annual celebration of the region’s unique tamale heritage with in-depth Delta tamale experiences. Beginning Thursday night, mingle with some of today’s most celebrated Southern writers and award-winning chefs during the ticketed Literary/Culinary Mash-Up dinner at Belmont Plantation . On Friday, there are lively panel discussions and a delicious Delta lunch prepared by Executive Chef Allen Sanders of Greenville’s Downtown Grille during another ticketed event at the E.E. Bass Auditorium. The community’s celebration of tamales culminates Saturday as food vendors, arts and crafts exhibitors and family fun take over downtown Greenville. Visit www.mainstreetgreenville.com to purchase tickets for the special Oct. 18th and 19th events, Oct. 20th festival is free to attend

Vardaman Sweet Potato Festival • Vardaman – November 3-10

The Sweet Potato Capital of the World, Vardaman, Miss., invites all ages to celebrate the Mississippi staple crop during its week-long celebration beginning Nov. 3. Opening day activities include a 5K run/walk, political speakers, famous BBQ Chicken on Main Street at the Front Porch, a sweet potato tasting Booth, a Pie eating contest and live entertainment. Free to attend

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