Visitors can celebrate the autumn season and the stunning scenery at the Lake of the Ozarks this fall. Numerous fairs, festivals and events will take place in communities around the lake throughout this month that the entire family can enjoy.
Here are some of the upcoming events to watch for:
Thunder Mountain Fall Festival
Each fall at Bridal Cave, Thunder Mountain comes alive for the autumn season. All visitors who tour Bridal Cave can participate in weekend activities from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays in October.
Free activities include live bluegrass music, sarsaparilla making, pumpkin painting, a pumpkin chunkin’ range, a hay bale mountain, fire pits for s’mores, a “bat bag” toss, face painting, pumpkin tic-tac-toe and pedal tractor races.
Additional activities that require additional fees include hiking the Pumpkin Trail, where visitors can choose their own pumpkin from the 1,000 that line the trail, and panning for gemstones in the Bridal Cave gem chute. There also will be hundreds of mums on sale as well as rock candy, hot chocolate, apple cider, coffee, pumpkin fudge and caramel apples.
The Thunder Mountain Fall Festival takes place on the Bridal Cave grounds, located at 526 Bridal Cave Road in Camdenton, Missouri. For more details, call 573.346.2676 or visit www.BridalCave.com.
Fall Harbor Hop
On Saturday, visitors and residents alike will have an opportunity to win prizes and view the fall colors from the water while cruising the Lake of the Ozarks during the landmark 33rd anniversary of the Fall Harbor Hop poker “hop.”
The goal of this semi-annual event is for participants to complete the best poker hand (or hands) by traveling on the lake or on land to their choice of waterfront checkpoints across the Lake of the Ozarks. There are more than 40 businesses, consisting primarily of restaurants, bars and marinas, participating in the Harbor Hop.
Harbor Hop hours vary from location to location, with venues opening between 9 and 11 a.m. and closing from 5 to 7 p.m. All poker hands must be turned in at the participants’ last stop to qualify for prizes.
During the event, participants arrive at the Harbor Hop establishment of their choice to register and pick up their first card before traveling, either by boat or by car, to their next locations to collect the remaining six cards to complete their hands. There also is the option of purchasing an eighth card at the last stop in hopes of improving their final poker hand.
For more details and a list of participating venues, visit www.FunLake.com/harborhop.
Osage Beach Fall Festival
Also happening Saturday is the 18th annual Osage Beach Fall Festival. Held at Osage Beach City Park, 950 Hatchery Road in Osage Beach, Missouri, there will be no shortage of fun activities.
Festivities begin at 10 a.m. and include chainsaw carving demonstrations, dance performances, pie-eating contests, trivia games and live music from 3 to 5 p.m.
For children, there are multiple free activities, including bounce houses, pumpkin decorating stations, a petting zoo and pony rides.
There also will be many arts and crafts booths, food vendors, a Missouri State Parks’ “Be Bear Aware” exhibit, police, fire and EMS displays and other activities.
For a full list of events during the Osage Beach Fall Festival, visit www.OsageBeach.org.
Street Machine Fall Follies
Classic cars shine on Saturday during the Westlake Street Machine Fall Follies car show at the Laurie Fairgrounds, 269 Fairgrounds Road in Laurie, Missouri.
Numerous classic cars, trucks and motorcycles from all over the Midwest will be on display. Highlights of the car show include a classic car parade through Laurie, food and craft vendor booths and tents, a beer garden, an “engine blow” contest and golden oldies from the ‘50s and ‘60s until the evening concludes around 6 p.m.
Awards will be given to 32 classes of show vehicles.
For more details, visit www.CityOfLaurie.com/fallfolliescarshow.htm.
Apple Butter Days
Apples are the centerpiece of another lake-area hometown festival the weekend of Oct. 19 and 20, as Linn Creek celebrates Apple Butter Days at the Camden County Museum. The festival is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with local artists and crafters showcasing their creativity in the arts and crafts show each day.
The air will be filled with the scent of apples as apple butter is also prepared on-site in the museum’s certified kitchen. Attendees will be able to buy jars of apple butter while it is still warm from the kitchen kettles where it is cooked.
For more information about the festival, call the Camden County Museum at 573.346.7191 or visit their website at www.CamdenCountyMuseum.org.
For information about other attractions, events, as well as dining and lodging options available at the Lake of the Ozarks, visit the Lake of the Ozarks Convention and Visitor Bureau’s website, www.FunLake.com, or call 800.386.5253.