It’s been a hot summer in the Southeast this year, but fall is just around the corner and Amelia Islanders are ready for some cool weather, and even more, some cool things to do. So grab the kids, or your posse of friends, and head out to these fall events that promise to be fun for the whole family!
On October 7 at noon, stop by the Island Hop Craft Beer Festival at Central Park in downtown Fernandina Beach. Celebrating its third year, the festival has become an island favorite. Taste beers from 20 to 30 craft breweries of Northeast Florida including local favorites First Love Brewing, Mocama Beer Company, Amelia Tavern and Amelia Island Brewing Company, and many more.
This is a family-friendly event, but you must be over 21 years old to taste, and admission is free for children under 12. From noon until 4 p.m., enjoy live music, arts and crafts booths, and merchandise for sale with all proceeds benefiting Fernandina Beach Main Street, which promotes a vibrant, business-friendly, historic community that is a destination for all. This event helps FBMS fund important programs that preserve the character of Fernandina Beach’s historic district and supports the businesses that call it home. For more information, visit www.fernandinamainstreet.com.
The St. Michael Academy Annual Pickleball Tournament brings the community together for a weekend of fun from October 13 to October 15 at the Central Park Racquet Courts. Building on the success of last year’s inaugural event, 2023 will include an adult beginner’s session, a kick-off party, and advanced sections.
Players can register online to play as a team and buddy up with a child to play mixed generation pickleball. There will be food trucks at the event, and the parking lots will be cordoned off at Central Park for event participants. Parking is free! For more information, email Pickleball@SMAcad.org. This event benefits not only St. Michael Academy, but also Fernandina Beach Parks & Recreation.
The Hispanic Heritage Food Festival in beautiful downtown Fernandina will be an event not to be missed on October 14 from 1 to 9 p.m. Held on South 3rd Street in front of the Green Turtle Tavern, the event features food trucks, vendors, and music celebrating the diverse Hispanic heritage in Nassau County. The event’s main sponsor is Friends of Fernandina Skate Park, a local nonprofit organization aimed at promoting healthy physical outdoor activity, developing bonds, and encouraging self-esteem through the expansion of Amelia Island’s local Skatepark into a challenging and inclusive park. Music will be provided by The Jax English Salsa Band, as well as the Mandala Band and more. For updates, visit their Facebook page at Fernandina Beach Hispanic Heritage Food Festival.
If your family is crazy for cars, the 27th annual 8 Flags Car Show will get your vroom on with everything from restored antique vehicles to modern-era limited edition Corvettes! Entrants travel great distances to participate in this popular yearly show. Besides Florida, Georgia, and North and South Carolina, Amelia Island has hosted participants from Maryland, Pennsylvania, Missouri, and Tennessee. Judging takes place in several categories, including getting the spectators involved in selecting the People’s Choice award. The 8 Flags Car Show will be held on historic Centre Street on October 21 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Hosted by the Amelia Cruizers Car Club, the car show attracts people from all over the area, and it’s fun for all ages. For more information, or if you’re interested in becoming a sponsor, visit ameliacruizers.org/car-show.
After the car show, get ready for the biggest night of the year for Amelia Island’s animals as the Nassau Humane Society presents their Annual Pasta 4 Paws on October 21 from 4 to 8 p.m. Held at the Atlantic Recreation Center Auditorium, this event features a delicious pasta dinner, silent auction, and more. For more information, call (904) 321-1647 or visit their website to purchase tickets at nassuhumane.org/pasta-4-paws.
For more fall family events, check out the Islander’s “Around Town” calendar here.