Ohio April 03, 2017
The 12 Best Small-Town Ohio Festivals You’ve Never Heard Of
Small town festivals are severely underrated.
Fortunately, Ohio is full of some of the best small town festivals in America. From epic food festivals to celebrations centered on historical figures, the following are what we consider to be the 12 best small town festivals in Ohio that you’ve (probably) never heard of.
1. Walleye Festival (Port Clinton)
Port Clinton is nicknamed the "Walleye Capital of the World" for its abundance of walleye and its festival celebrates that with rides, live music, craft vendors and — of course — walleye. This year's festival will take place on May 25-29.
2. Utica Sertoma Ice Cream Festival (Utica)
Don't miss the chance to savor some of the state's most delicious ice cream at this family favorite festival, which also features pony rides, a car show, a magic show and many more events. This year's festival will take place on May 27-29.
3. Banana Split Festival (Wilmington)
This summer, mark your calendars for the Banana Split Festival in the small city of Wilmington, which celebrates the creation (and claimed birthplace) of this classic dessert. This year's festival will take place on June 9-10.
4. Lily Fest (Rockbridge)
Tucked away in the Hocking Hills, you'll find this little enchanting festival, which features gardens, artist demonstrations, live music, special speakers, workshops and more. This year's festival takes place on July 14-16.
5. Annie Oakley Festival (Greenville)
Annie Oakley is famous in Greenville. Come and celebrate what life was like at the turn of the century at this unique festival, which takes place on July 28-30 this year.
6. Bucyrus Bratwurst Festival (Bucyrus)
The beloved Bucyrus Bratwurst Festival will "serve the best 'wurst" on August 17-19, and this year's festival will be the 50th one. You don't want to miss it!
7. Milan Melon Festival (Milan)
Melons abound in the small town of Milan every Labor Day weekend. The 59th festival will take place on September 2-4 this year.
8. Backwoods Fest (Thornville)
April Dray/Only In Your State
Set literally in the middle of the woods, this unique festival says goodbye to summer and hello to fall every year on the third weekend in September. Backwoods Fest features more than 300 craft vendors, bluegrass music, open-fire kettle cooked food and more. This year's festival will take place on September 15-17.
9. Johnny Appleseed Festival (Lisbon)
This year's Johnny Appleseed Festival will take place on September 16-17 in historic downtown Lisbon. Come for the apples, stay for the small town festival charm.
10. Ohio Heritage Days Festival (Lucas)
Malabar Farm State Park hosts this popular festival on September 23-24 this year. The event is free and features crafts, antique tractors, horses, food, live music, a Civil War and 18th-Century Living History Camp and even archeological displays.
11. Ohio Swiss Festival (Sugarcreek)
Celebrate the Sugarcreek area’s Swiss heritage (and Swiss cheese, of course) with parades, a 5K and all the authentic Swiss cuisine you can eat. This year's festival will take place on September 29-30.
12. Ohio Sauerkraut Festival (Waynesville)
Get your sauerkraut on at this beloved Ohio festival on October 14-15 this year. Be sure to check out the plethora of arts and craft vendors while you're here.
Have you been to any of these small town festivals? What is your favorite small town festival in Ohio? Share your thoughts and experiences with us!