Festival: Circleville Pumpkin Show
Why you should go:
Seeing a bunch of 1,000-pound pumpkins is awesome, but there's more to do at the Pumpkin Show than simply staring in wonder. For more than 100 years, Circleville has been the epicenter of all things pumpkin as host of Ohio's oldest and largest festival. Go there to chow down and watch some competitions.
What to eat & drink:
You'd better be in the mood for some pumpkin goodies. There'll be pumpkin pancakes, cookies, burgers, pizza, taffy, ice cream, cake, waffles, cream puffs and more, plus 23,000 pumpkin pies - including a six-foot version - and more than 100,000 pumpkin doughnuts. If you get pumpkined out, there are conventional fair food options too.
Beyond the hog-calling and "prettiest pumpkin" competitions, there's a full schedule of parades, contests, pageants and performances. The Miss Pumpkin pageant is always popular, and the main stage will feature country and rock acts.
The festival is best known for those giant pumpkins, but the works of art sculptor Gus Smithhisler creates with those gourds is amazing. No jack-o'-lanterns here - his intricate designs have even been featured at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. Catch Gus from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday at the Pickaway Visitors Pavilion.
Circleville Pumpkin Show
When: Through Saturday, Oct. 23
Where: 159 E. Franklin St., Circleville
Hours: 11 a.m.-11 p.m. Thursday-Friday, 10 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturday
Parking: Free street parking around downtown Circleville and pay lots from area residents, churches and civic organizations