Best time to visit Midwest

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Midwest

Best time of year to visit Midwest

If you plan to explore the entire north-central US, June through September is the best time to visit the Midwest. Hot and humid summers offer excellent road conditions to drive across the region with bonus open-air festivals and events such as Twins Days in Ohio and state fairs in Indiana, Iowa, Ohio, or North Dakota. On the other hand, Illinois, Oklahoma, and Missouri have higher rainfall during summer months. October and November see a sizable drop in temperatures but sunny days, comfortable for walks in colorful foliage, don't go anywhere. Why not join the Allstate Hot Chocolate Run in Chicago to see the city in different shades of fall? From December to February, you'll meet bitterly cold and snowy weather around the Great Lakes. But there is no better time for witnessing mysterious snow rollers in Ohio or spectacular light festivals in Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio, and other states.

16 THINGS TO DO IN MIDWEST (MAY 25 - JUNE 03)

Ohio Bike Week

Ohio Bike Week

unconfirmedlate May–early June 2021 • event

The largest motorcycle rally of the Midwest and rock concerts roll out in Sandusky on the shores of Lake Erie

American Discovery Trail

American Discovery Trail

all year round • activity

You'll find no better way to discover America than this lengthy hike across 15 states, from the Atlantic to the Pacific. For such a long journey, one needs at least a year of time reserved

Cicada Mania

Cicada Mania

May–mid-June • nature

A billionth population of American cicadas come out during final weeks in their lives to rejoice in a huge mating par

Baltimore Oriole

Baltimore Oriole

April–September • nature

Attracted by fruits and nectar, these birds are often spotted in the gardens

Kitch-Iti-Kipi (The Big Spring)

Kitch-Iti-Kipi (The Big Spring)

March–November • nature

Michigan’s largest freshwater spring is a geological phenomenon and a great fishing spot

Snake Alley Criterium

Snake Alley Criterium

May 28–31, 2021 • event

Burlington, Iowa, hosts one of the most challenging races on one of the most crooked streets in the world

Cave Point County Park

Cave Point County Park

April–October • activity

One of the most scenic parks of Wisconsin is located by the shores of Lake Michigan

Wisconsin Dells Kayaking

Wisconsin Dells Kayaking

May–September • activity

Visit a favorite family vacation destination in Wisconsin

Baby Bison in the Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Baby Bison in the Theodore Roosevelt National Park

April–June  • nature

Baby bisons of Great Plains are cute and playful, enjoying life under protection of their mothers

Shrine of the Grotto of the Redemption

Shrine of the Grotto of the Redemption

all year round • activity

A massive religious shrine built by a priest contains thousands of rare stones and minerals and is considered the largest humanmade grotto in the world

Detroit Masonic Temple

Detroit Masonic Temple

all year round (1st & 3rd Sunday of the month) • activity

Visit the world's largest Masonic Temple built in an impressive neo-gothic style

Niagara Cave

Niagara Cave

April–October • nature

A huge cavern is famous for its impressive underground waterfall

Mount Horeb Trollway

Mount Horeb Trollway

all year round • activity

This town is lined with carved trolls, pointing to places to shop and eat

The Nordhouse Dunes

The Nordhouse Dunes

April–November • activity

Ancient dunes by Lake Michigan represent a unique eco-system

Pictured Rocks Kayaking

Pictured Rocks Kayaking

late May–September • activity

Paddle along Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore on the waters of Lake Superior in Michigan

Carlton Peak

Carlton Peak

May–October • activity

One of the greatest Sawtooth Mountain peaks on the North Shore of Lake Superior

105 THINGS TO DO OUT OF SELECTED DATE RANGE

Twins Days Festival

Twins Days Festival

out of rangeAugust 07–09, 2020 (virtual event) • event

The world's biggest gathering of twins in the city founded by twins—Twinsburg

Lake Geneva Winterfest

Lake Geneva Winterfest

out of rangeFebruary 3–7, 2021 • event

A place to celebrate art, winter, and have fun with over a dozen themed events in Wisconsin

Barberton Mum Festival

Barberton Mum Festival

out of rangeSeptember 25–26, 2021 • event

Celebrate fall watching millions of blooms at a scenic park

Country Concert

Country Concert

out of rangeJuly 8–10, 2021 • event

One of the best summer country events in Ohio and all of the Midwest

Sandhill Crane Migration

Sandhill Crane Migration

out of rangemid-February–mid-April • nature

Half a million feathered travellers take a break during their spring migration to feed and rest at the Platte River

Woodward Dream Cruise

Woodward Dream Cruise

out of rangeAugust 21, 2021 • event

The largest one-day classic car event in the world

Warrior Dash Ohio

Warrior Dash Ohio

on holdlate July 2021  • event

One of unique action sports and adventure events in the U.S.

Michigan State Fair

Michigan State Fair

unconfirmedSeptember 2–6, 2021 • event

See the second oldest state fair in the United States

Tulip Time

Tulip Time

out of rangeMay 1–8, 2021 • event

Fun and flowers! Skim the cream off in Holland during the tulip festival

Saint Paul Winter Carnival

Saint Paul Winter Carnival

out of rangeJanuary 28–February 7, 2021 • event

One of the oldest and most popular annual festivals in Minnesota

Kansas City Auto Show

Kansas City Auto Show

out of rangeJune 11–13, 2021 • event

Hundreds of new cars and lots of entertainment

Missouri State Fair

Missouri State Fair

out of rangeAugust 12–22, 2021 • event

The annual showcase of agriculture also offers fun for the whole family

Ohio River Sternwheel Festival

Ohio River Sternwheel Festival

out of rangeSeptember 10–12, 2021 • event

Sternwheeler races and other fun activities to watch

MTU Winter Carnival

MTU Winter Carnival

out of rangeFebruary 3–6, 2021 • event

One of the largest annual winter festivals in the U.S. takes place on the campus of the Michigan Tech University

Total Solar Eclipse

Total Solar Eclipse

out of rangeApril 8, 2024 • event

Some spots on Earth wait for the moment of solar totality for hundreds or even thousands of years. To capture a spectacle, you have to be truly lucky

East Peoria Festival of Lights

East Peoria Festival of Lights

out of rangeNovember 26–December 31, 2020 • event

One of the biggest and brightest holiday events in Illinois

Wisconsin Cranberry Harvest

Wisconsin Cranberry Harvest

out of rangelate September–early October • nature

Cranberry Country welcomes everyone to visit the harvest celebrations

International Cherry Pit-Spitting Championship

International Cherry Pit-Spitting Championship

out of rangeJuly 3, 2021 • event

Anyone can take part in this competition, which promises great fun for the whole family

Kansas City Air Show

Kansas City Air Show

out of rangeJuly 3–4, 2021 • event

World-class aerobatic performances in the heart of America

Port Huron Float Down

Port Huron Float Down

unconfirmedmid-August 2021 • event

Summer water fun event in Michigan

Country Thunder Iowa Music Festival

Country Thunder Iowa Music Festival

out of rangeJune 11–13, 2021 • event

Iowa's most well-known country music festival promises a weekend packed with country concerts

Ohio Renaissance Festival

Ohio Renaissance Festival

out of rangeSeptember 5–October 25, 2020 • event

Find yourself in a 16th-century English village

Warrens Cranberry Festival

Warrens Cranberry Festival

out of rangeSeptember 24–26, 2021 • event

The largest cranberry celebration in the world

Indiana State Fair

Indiana State Fair

out of rangeAugust 6–22, 2021 • event

A major Midwestern entertainment attracting a million people every year

Zehnder’s Snowfest

Zehnder’s Snowfest

out of rangeJanuary 29–31, 2021 (limited event) • event

One of the top snow sculpting events in North America held in Frankenmuth, MI since 1990

Barnesville Pumpkin Festival

Barnesville Pumpkin Festival

out of rangeSeptember 23–26, 2021 • event

Giant pumpkins highlight the fall harvest celebration

Summerfest

Summerfest

out of rangeJune 24–July 10, 2021  • event

The giant music festival in Milwaukee on the shore of Lake Michigan

Ohio State Fair

Ohio State Fair

out of rangeJuly 28–August 8, 2021 • event

Experience traditional Midwestern summer entertainment

Illinois State Fair

Illinois State Fair

out of rangeAugust 12–22, 2021 • event

Nothing can beat a good ol' fair in the Midwest

Wayne County Lightfest

Wayne County Lightfest

out of rangeNovember 21–December 31, 2019 • event

A Christmas fantasy drive-through not far from Detroit

X Games Minneapolis

X Games Minneapolis

unconfirmedlate July–early August 2021 • event

An exciting Skateboard, BMX and Moto X event featuring music, gaming and more

Columbus Pride Festival and Parade

Columbus Pride Festival and Parade

unconfirmedParade: October 3, 2020 (virtual event) | Festival: canceled • event

One of the largest pride festivals in the Midwest

National Balloon Classic

National Balloon Classic

out of rangeJuly 30–August 7, 2021 • event

The premier ballooning festival in Iowa held since the 1970s

North Dakota State Fair

North Dakota State Fair

out of rangeJuly 23–31, 2021 • event

The largest event in the state draws people with country music, fun rides and competitions

Vectren Dayton Air Show

Vectren Dayton Air Show

on holdJuly 10–11, 2021  • event

One of the leading air shows in the U.S.

Ice Shards on the Great Lakes

Ice Shards on the Great Lakes

out of rangemid–February–late March • nature

The ice cover gets shattered to knife-sharp pieces as spring takes over winter

Nebraska Balloon & Wine Festival

Nebraska Balloon & Wine Festival

out of rangeAugust 20–21, 2021 • event

A great occasion to enjoy the summer!

Snow Rollers

Snow Rollers

out of rangemid-January–mid-March • nature

These huge white 'doughnuts' surely raise questions. Like, what is a 'snow roller' and where does it come from?

Chicago International Film Festival

Chicago International Film Festival

out of rangeOctober 14–25, 2020 • event

The longest-running competitive film festival in the USA

Wisconsin State Fair

Wisconsin State Fair

out of rangeAugust 5–15, 2021 • event

Get on a roller coaster and snack on corndogs in the town of West Allis

DuQuoin State Fair

DuQuoin State Fair

out of rangeAugust 27–September 6, 2021 • event

One of the nation's best agricultural events is full of fun experiences

Christmas Nights of Lights at Coney Island

Christmas Nights of Lights at Coney Island

out of rangeNovember 6, 2020–January 9, 2021 • event

A popular drive-through holiday lights display in Cincinnati, Ohio

Columbus Arts Festival

Columbus Arts Festival

out of rangeJune 11–13, 2021 • event

One of the largest outdoor summer events in Columbus

St.Louis Mardi Gras (Soulard Mardi Gras)

St.Louis Mardi Gras (Soulard Mardi Gras)

out of rangeJanuary 6–February 16, 2021 (most events are virtual) • event

The second largest Mardi Gras celebration in the United States

Dublin Irish Festival

Dublin Irish Festival

out of rangeAugust 6–8, 2021 • event

Go experience the Irish attitude at the largest three-day Irish festival in the world

Minnesota State Fair

Minnesota State Fair

canceledAugust 26–September 6, 2021 • event

Witness the largest state fair in the USA by daily attendance

Stillwater Lumberjack Days

Stillwater Lumberjack Days

unconfirmedJuly 2021 • event

Celebration of the people, history and heritage of Minnesota

Apple Festival of Kendallville

Apple Festival of Kendallville

out of rangeOctober 2–3, 2021 • event

Go back in time to the 1800s and try delicious treats made of apples

AppleJack Festival

AppleJack Festival

unconfirmedSeptember 2021 • event

Celebrate the kickoff of the apple harvest season in Nebraska

Pierogi Fest

Pierogi Fest

out of rangeJuly 23–25, 2021 • event

Great food and some wacky fun in just 30 minutes from Chicago

Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show & Balloon Festival

Battle Creek Field of Flight Air Show & Balloon Festival

out of rangeJune 30–July 4, 2021 • event

America's largest festival combining air show and hot air balloons

Iowa Fall Colors

Iowa Fall Colors

out of rangeOctober • nature

Warm days and cool nights, very few insects, and the vibrant autumn colors make the fall season one of the best times in Iowa

Christmas Lights

Christmas Lights

out of rangeNovember 1, 2020–January 5, 2021 • event

Get dazzled by millions of magical lights in Branson

Annunciation Greek Festival

Annunciation Greek Festival

out of rangeSeptember 10–12, 2021 • event

Lots of delicious food and excellent music in Kansas City, Missouri

Pictured Rocks Winter Hike

Pictured Rocks Winter Hike

out of rangeDecember–February  • nature

Winter has its special power to create majestic landscapes. And the area of Pictured Rocks in Michigan during winter period turns into a real ice and snow masterpiece

Garden of Lights at Green Bay Botanical Garden

Garden of Lights at Green Bay Botanical Garden

out of rangeNovember 27–December 20, 2020 (Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays); December 26–30, 2020; January 1–2, 2021 (dated and timed entry tickets must be purchased in advance) • event

A magical Christmas-themed garden keeps spirits up during the holidays in east Wisconsin

Rock Fest

Rock Fest

out of rangeJuly 15–17, 2021 • event

The largest rock and camping festival in the United States

Morton Pumpkin Festival

Morton Pumpkin Festival

out of rangeSeptember 15–18, 2021 • event

The "Pumpkin capital of the world" celebrates the harvest season

Kansas City St. Patrick's Day Parade

Kansas City St. Patrick's Day Parade

out of rangeMarch 17, 2022 • event

One of the largest annual parades in Missouri

Arlington Million

Arlington Million

unconfirmedAugust 14, 2021 • event

A perfect opportunity to enjoy live racing, entertainment, and fancy group outings

Iowa State Fair

Iowa State Fair

out of rangeAugust 12–22, 2021 • event

Feel the spirit of the Midwest, at one of the largest and best-known state fairs in the USA

Nebraska State Fair

Nebraska State Fair

out of rangeAugust 27–September 6, 2021 • event

Visit the fair from "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz" movie and enjoy Midwestern style entertainment

Plymouth Ice Festival

Plymouth Ice Festival

on holdJanuary 2021 • event

Skilfully carved ice sculptures line the streets of downtown Plymouth

Oktoberfest Zinzinnati

Oktoberfest Zinzinnati

unconfirmedSeptember 2021 • event

Don't miss America's largest Oktoberfest

University of Okoboji Winter Games

University of Okoboji Winter Games

out of rangeJanuary 28–31, 2021 • event

Winter festival with lots of fun games, fireworks, and a polar plunge in Okoboji, Iowa

Kansas City Fashion Week

Kansas City Fashion Week

out of rangeApril 7–8, 2021 (in-person viewing of filming) | April 29–May 1, 2021 (virtual runaway shows) • event

The most glamorous gathering in Kansas City

Boats and Bluegrass Festival

Boats and Bluegrass Festival

canceledSeptember 25–27, 2020 • event

An outdoor festival on the banks of the Mississippi

Bayfield Apple Festival

Bayfield Apple Festival

out of rangeOctober 1–3, 2021 • event

Join an amazing celebration of fall!

WCOL Country Jam & Campout

WCOL Country Jam & Campout

on hold2019 (cancelled) • event

The largest honky-tonk and country music festival in Ohio

4th of July in Dublin

4th of July in Dublin

out of rangeJuly 4th 2020 parade, celebration, and fireworks are canceled | Sherm Sheldon Fishing Derby is on • event

The suburb of Columbus is famous for its Independence Day celebration with the Irish twist

Marshall County Blueberry Festival

Marshall County Blueberry Festival

out of rangeSeptember 3–6, 2021 • event

One of the largest annual celebrations in Plymouth, Indiana

World Cow Chip Throwing Contest

World Cow Chip Throwing Contest

out of rangeApril 17, 2021 • event

Find similarities between ultimate frisbee and cow dung tossing

New Year's Eve in Kansas City

New Year's Eve in Kansas City

out of rangeDecember 31  • event

Countdown bashes, gourmet food, and live music to mark the most festive night of the year

Butch Bando's Fantasy of Lights

Butch Bando's Fantasy of Lights

out of rangeNovember 20, 2020–January 3, 2021 • event

One of the largest drive-through holiday displays in Ohio

Milwaukee Holiday Lights Festival

Milwaukee Holiday Lights Festival

out of rangeNovember 19, 2020–January 1, 2021 • event

This festive seasonal illumination brightens the city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin

The Abominable Snow Race

The Abominable Snow Race

out of rangeMarch 14, 2021 • event

Premier winter obstacle course race in Wisconsin held at the Devil's Head Ski Resort

U.P. Fall Beer Festival in Marquette, MI

U.P. Fall Beer Festival in Marquette, MI

canceledSeptember 12, 2020 • event

A large event for beer enthusiasts in Michigan

Michigan Summer Beer Festival

Michigan Summer Beer Festival

unconfirmedlate July 2021 • event

A large outdoor beer brewers event near Detroit

Historic Irvington Halloween Festival

Historic Irvington Halloween Festival

out of rangeOctober 25–31, 2020 • event

The oldest and one of the largest Halloween festivals in the United States

Ethnic Enrichment Fest

Ethnic Enrichment Fest

out of rangeAugust 20–22, 2021 • event

The largest cultural diversity event in Kansas City

Chinese New Year in Columbus

Chinese New Year in Columbus

out of rangeFebruary 12, 2021 • event

Colorful annual festivities at Ohio State University and around Columbus

South Dakota State Fair

South Dakota State Fair

out of rangeSeptember 2–6, 2021 • event

Experience the charm of the Midwest at this traditional state fair

PNC Festival of Lights at Cincinnati Zoo

PNC Festival of Lights at Cincinnati Zoo

out of rangeNovember 21, 2020–January 3, 2021 | Bonus Nights: January 8, 9, 10, 15, 16 and 17, 2021 • event

Voted #1 Zoo Lights in the country as a favourite​ Ohio family holiday tradition

Dragon Lights Columbus

Dragon Lights Columbus

out of rangeNovember 23, 2018–January 6, 2019 • event

A magical annual show held in the Ohio Expo Center

Powell Gardens Festival of Lights

Powell Gardens Festival of Lights

out of rangeNovember 13, 2020–January 3, 2021 • event

A popular holiday attraction in Kansas City area, Missouri

Blue Jacket Fantasy of Lights

Blue Jacket Fantasy of Lights

out of rangeNovember 13–December 31, 2020 • event

Northeast Indiana’s best winter holiday event

Lakes Jam

Lakes Jam

out of rangeJune 24–26, 2021 • event

Lots of rock and country near the beautiful Brainerd lakes

Warrior Dash Michigan

Warrior Dash Michigan

overJuly 27, 2019 • event

Go through water, fire, air and earth to prove you're a true warrior

Electric Forest

Electric Forest

unconfirmedJune, 2021 • event

A multi-genre music festival in Rothbury, Michigan

Clinton Fall Festival

Clinton Fall Festival

canceledSeptember 25–27, 2020 • event

A fun-filled fall weekend in a historic village

Ramble Jam

Ramble Jam

on hold2020 • event

Two days of the best country music in Minnesota

KC Restaurant Week

KC Restaurant Week

out of rangeJanuary 8–17, 2021 • event

A favorite time of the year for foodies

Kansas City Renaissance Festival

Kansas City Renaissance Festival

out of rangeSeptember 5–October 18, 2020 • event

Go back in time to the 16th century and meet King Henry VIII and his royal court

Kansas City Irish Fest

Kansas City Irish Fest

unconfirmedearly September 2021 • event

One of the best Irish Festivals of the Midwest

Kansas City FilmFest International

Kansas City FilmFest International

out of rangeApril 12–18, 2021 • event

The oldest and largest festivals in the Kansas City metro area

Western Farm Show

Western Farm Show

out of rangeFebruary 19–21, 2021 • event

The best event for dairy farmers and cattle ranchers in Kansas City

KC Beer Fest

KC Beer Fest

out of rangeSeptember 12, 2020 • event

A popular craft beer festival at The Kansas City Power & Light District

Pirate Family Daze

Pirate Family Daze

unconfirmedearly June 2021 • event

A family-friendly event with a nautical and pirate theme in Port Washington

Brickyard 400

Brickyard 400

out of rangeAugust 15, 2021 • event

One of NASCAR's most iconic races at an iconic location

Japanese Festival

Japanese Festival

canceledSeptember 5–7, 2020 • event

One of the largest and oldest Japanese festivals in the United States

Kings Island WinterFest

Kings Island WinterFest

unconfirmedlate November–December 2021 • event

One of the best Christmas festivals in the Cincinnati area

Allstate Hot Chocolate Run

Allstate Hot Chocolate Run

out of rangeNovember 08, 2020 (virtual event) • event

The sweetest run in the world takes over the United States from coast to coast

The Great Forest Park Balloon Race

The Great Forest Park Balloon Race

out of rangeSeptember 17–20, 2020 (tribute balloon flight; festival canceled) • event

The second oldest hot-air balloon race in the United States

Kansas City Christmas Lights

Kansas City Christmas Lights

out of rangeearly November–early January  • event

Downtown KC looks the best during the holiday season

Beaverdale Fall Festival

Beaverdale Fall Festival

out of rangeSeptember 17–18, 2021 • event

One of the most popular community festivals in Des Moines, Iowa

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