As the weather cools, Savannah's calendar fills with events that are favorite fall traditions for locals and visitors to The Hostess City. From an entertainment-laden running event to culinary festivals and art fairs to holiday festivities, there are good times to be had by all. Take your pick of the events mentioned here and see the calendar at VisitSavannah.com to add more to your list.
Get ready for the Blues at the monthly Savannah Folk Music Society concert. Atlanta-based Stephen "Blues Dude" Duncan will be doling out tunes rooted in the Mississippi Delta and the Piedmont. Also appearing are The Hungry Monks—an acoustic band centered around the creative talents of Hazel Ketchum (guitar, percussion and vocals) and John Holenko (mandolin, guitar and vocals).
When: November 6, 7:30pm – 10:00pm
Where: First Presbyterian Church
Cost: $5.00 minimum suggested donation
Back for its 5th year, this running festival will have multiple events, including a two-day Health and Fitness Expo prior to race day and a finish line concert with superstar vocal group Rascal Flatts as the headliner. Cheer teams and live bands will line the course to keep runners "rocking and rolling" as they stride through scenic neighborhoods and soak in Savannah's charm. And runners can make every step count even more by turning their run into a fundraiser for their charity of choice.
When: November 7 – November 8
Where: Bay and Bull Streets
Cost: Varies (click here for registration fees)
The First Saturday event on River Street will be one that breaks out the brews. From 2:00-6:00pm, 20-plus Georgia Breweries will offer tastings of their beverages; many are creating specialty brews just for this event. Live music continues until 8:00pm. And a VIP ticket will score unlimited tastings, admission to talks by the masterminds behind the brews, and a souvenir pilsner tasting glass.
When: November 7
Where: Rousakis Riverfront Plaza
Cost: General Admission will be purchased by the taste at the door
Minimum purchase: 10 tastes for $10, VIP Ticket: $40
A coastal Georgia cultural experience, the Lowcountry Boil is a pre-festival event kick-off for the Savannah Food & Wine Festival. It's set on the Riverfront Esplanade on Hutchinson Island, which offers majestic views of the city skyline. Family style peel-and-eat tables will be set up for all to dig into fresh-caught shrimp and requisite fixins'—potatoes, corn, Vidalia onions and such—all grown in Georgia. Take the entire family, and take a big appetite if competing in the Shrimp Eating Contests.
When: November 7
Where: Hutchinson Island
Cost: $25 per person
Scheduled to begin on November 9, the Savannah Food & Wine Festival is a week-long culinary adventure. Here's some of what's in store. Wine aficionados will be floating on air with the lineup of tasting events that include a River Street Stroll and the Grand Reserve Tasting that showcases the best of the best. Foodies will be likewise elated with epicurean dining that ranges from an artisanal supper to a champagne brunch. And all festivalgoers are sure to swoon over Taste of Savannah; our city's best restaurants will have samplings of a dizzying array of dishes. To get extra scoop on the event, read our blog post Wine and Dine at Savannah Food & Wine Festival 2015.
When: November 9 – November 15
Where: Venues vary throughout the city
Cost: Varies by event (click here for ticket info)
On November 12, Savannah Folk Music Society will welcome International Guitar Duo Loren and Mark. They have been described as "gifted" and "amazing" and their music is influenced by Popular, Americana, Jazz and Classical. The duo is known for wowing audiences with their diverse repertoire of original and arranged music, which consists of world-class guitar instrumentals and vocal duets.
When: November 12, 7:00pm
Where: First Presbyterian Church
Cost: Cash only at the door: $15 general public, $12 SFMS members/students
Telfair Art Fair is celebrating its 21st anniversary with a fabulous weekend of activities. Friday is the Arty Party where guests can preview and purchase featured art and rub elbows with artists at a cocktail reception. On Saturday and Sunday wind your way through Telfair Square to browse a variety of art for sale in a broad range of prices and media. Saturday is also Free Family Day and kids can drop by Telfair Square to engage in myriad free activities including plein air painting.
When: November 13 – November 15
Where: Telfair Square and Jepson Center
Cost: Arty Party: Patron tickets start at $175, General tickets $130 ($85 Telfair members)
Art Fair and Family Day are free and open to the public
Join award-winning children's authors and illustrators from around the country at the 12th annual Children's Book Festival. It celebrates reading and storytelling and has entertainment and hands-on activities for the whole family. Kate DiCamillo, the National Ambassador for Young People's Literature and a best-selling author, is among those making an appearance.
When: November 14, 10:00am – 4:00pm
Where: Forsyth Park (Rain location: Bull Street Library)
Cost: Free admission
Telfair Museums will kick off the holidays with its 3rd annual tree lighting event. The tree will be designed by Libbie Summers, artistic director of the lifestyle brand A Food-Inspired Life, and will be in keeping with the exhibition Monet and American Impressionism. Guests can view the exhibition during the event and will also be treated to an inspiring performance by Savannah Children's Choir.
When: November 18, 5:00pm – 7:00pm
Where: Jepson Center
Cost: Free and open to the public
Nothing says the holidays like "Jolly Old Saint Nick," gingerbread houses, holiday treats, and musical and decorative holiday cheer. And all of it comes together at the Savannah Harbor Holiday Series. Even though the series is taking a year off from staging light displays around the Hutchinson Island Road Course, you can expect The Westin grounds to be fabulously festive. And each night there will be holiday-themed events featuring local nonprofits, children's groups or musical performances.
When: November 28 – December 12 (Thursday – Saturday)
December 16 – December 25 (Open Daily)
6:00pm – 9:00pm
Where: The Westin Savannah Harbor grounds
Cost: $5 donation per person requested to support local charities volunteering each night
of the Holiday Series
The Saturday after Thanksgiving, the Savannah riverfront will be aglow with a floating parade of vessels decorated with holiday lights. This is the 15th year for the parade and it's expected to showcase over 60 sailboats and yachts. There will also be live musical performances, a tree lighting ceremony, and a fireworks extravaganza that rivals the Fourth of July.
When: November 28
Where: Boats will be on both sides of the riverfront
Cost: $5 requested donation for non-resort guests at the Westin
Watch for free along the River Street side
Whatever you choose to do in Savannah in November, it's likely to become a tradition if it's not already. And make it a practice to contact Live Love Savannah anytime and every time you need help finding the neighborhood and the home where you'll love to live.