One of a Kind Fall and Winter Festivals in Levy County
From swashbuckling pirates to celebrations of local seafood, music and art shows to holidays on the water, Levy County, Florida, is your destination for one-of-a-kind festivals this fall and winter.
No matter when you visit, there’s something exciting going on. Here are the upcoming events to look forward to in Levy County.
Beware of train robbers when the Wild West comes to Williston for Six Gun Territory Wild West Weekend at Kirby Family Farm. The event celebrates the theme park that entertained visitors for more than 20 yearswith gunfighters, can-can girls and memorabilia from the original Six Gun Territory. You’ll get a chance to travel back in time when you take a ride on the historic railroad, plus shop for Western-themed art, toys and collectibles. Camp out Saturday night toexperiencethe Western spirit all weekend long. Kirby Family Farm is a 501c3 nonprofit organization offeringeducational programs forat-risk and special needs children.
The Jolly Roger will fly over Cedar Key during Pirate Invasion Weekend. Pirate enthusiasts of all ages will enjoy three days of festivities that include a pirate encampment, weapons demonstrations, fire performers, costume contests and a children’s treasure hunt. Browse the vendors and craftsmen along Thieves Row, where you can purchase pirate-themed garments and gear. The weekend comes to a closeon Sunday with a final cannon salute.
Cedar Key, Sept. 15–17
Did you know Florida’s Nature Coast is an ideal environment for elephants? You’ll learn that and more at Elephant Appreciation Day at Two Tails Ranch, the only privately owned elephant facility of its kind. The annual fundraiser supports the ranch and its educational programswith 100 percent of proceeds going towardcaring for the elephants. There will be animal talks and encounters, plus pony and camel rides, face painting and live music. You may even spot some special guests brought from nearby Big Cat Habitat and Gulf Coast Sanctuary.
Williston, Sept. 23–24
Go nuts for peanuts at the annual Central Florida Peanut Festival in Williston’s Heritage Park. There will be plenty of roasted, baked, boiled or friedpeanuts to enjoy, plus children’s activities, live music, arts and crafts, and antique tractors. See who will be crowned Little Peanut King, Queenand Baby Peanut, and come early for free grilled peanut butter and jelly sandwiches before they run out.
Williston, Oct. 7
Fresh shellfish and more than 200 arts and crafts booths make the Cedar Key Seafood Festival a highlight of the fall. Explore the picturesque waterside town while feasting on local clams; Cedar Key is one of the largest producers of farm-raised clams in the country. Watch the parade Saturday morning, or take advantage of a rare opportunity to tour Seahorse Key and its historic lighthouse, which predates the Civil War. Boats will depart from City Marina every hour on the half-hour from 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.
Cedar Key, Oct. 21–22
Enjoy the sights, sounds and tastes ofold Florida in Yankeetown when the coastal village hosts the Yankeetown Seafood and Art Festival. Come hungry so you can sample the mix of surf, turf and sweetswhile listening to live music and checking out unique artwork, crafts and gifts.
Yankeetown, Nov. 18–19
Step back in time at this living history event at Manatee Springs State Park, where "settlers" work in costume to recreate the cooking methods and crafts of this time period. Clay Landing Days will bring you to a time when Seminoles and settlers lived in this area of Florida. Sign up early online for a covered wagon ride that will take you on the North Trail. A stop at Seminole Chickee Hut will show you what life was like during clay Landing days. There is no fee to the Clay Landing Day Exhibit Area, however, there is a State Park entry fee of $6 per car load, up to eight people.
Chiefland, Nov. 24–25
This December, celebrate the holidays in Levy County, where Santa swaps snow and a sleigh for sun and sailboats!
Santa’s first stop on the Nature Coast will be in Williston, where he will arrive by elephant for Light Up Williston. After the parade, festivities continue with the lighting ceremony in Heritage Park.
Williston, Dec. 2
As a gateway to the historic Suwannee River, Fanning Springswelcomes the season with its Festival of Lights and Boat Parade. Enjoy live music all day, plus a rubber duck race; a car, truck and bike show; a rock climbing wall; and a visit from Santa Claus. Make sure to stay past sunset to see the parade of boats decked out in dazzling holiday decor.
Fanning Springs, Dec. 2
Santa Clam comes to town when Cedar Key hosts its Christmas Boat Parade, sponsored by Cedar Key Aquaculture Association. The guest of honor will make a memorable entrance on an airboat. Children will be able to meet Santa Clam and get their photos taken with him. At dusk, boats lit in their holiday finest will parade in the water along Dock Street for a chance to wina prize.
Cedar Key, Dec. 9 (Rain date: Dec. 14)
Visit North Florida’s North Pole at Chiefland Christmas Festival, with a special appearance from Santa, Mrs. Claus and Santa’s elves. Held at Train Depot Park, the festival will offer plenty of opportunities for holiday shopping. There will be activities for all ages including a petting zoo, a bounce house, bungee jumping,a rock climbing wall, first responder demonstrations and water walkers. The fun lasts well into the evening with the Lighted Parade kicking off at 6p.m.
Chiefland, Dec. 9
Cedar Key’s celebrated clams take center stage at Taste of Cedar Key. Local restaurantsserve up signature dishes at City Marina & Park, with guests getting to sample them all. Wristbands for tastings can be purchased on-site for $10 per adult and $5 per child. There will be an opportunity to tour Seahorse Key and its lighthouse, which opens to visitors only four times a year. Plus, if you missed Santa Clam earlier in the month, he’ll be making another appearance on Dec. 17.
Cedar Key, Dec. 16