3 Craven County events named in Top 20 by Southeast Tourism Society

Fireworks from the South Lawn of Tryon Palace illuminate the sky during the Holiday Season. Contributed photo

New Bern and Craven County have long been known for hosting a variety of notable festivals and events throughout the year, but their fall and winter events are what seem to have caught the most attention.

The Southeast Tourism Society (STS) recently named three Craven County events to the STS Top 20 Events in the Southeast for July through December 2021: MumFest and Chili Fest in October and Candlelight Tours in December.

“These awards speak to how dynamic Craven County truly is. Each of these three events is so unique and offers experiences for many different tourists and festival-goers. The similarity is that they are among the BEST events in the south,” said Melissa Riggle, executive director Craven County Tourism Development Authority.

The STS Top 20 Festival and Event Awards have highlighted programs around the Southeast since 1985. Travel Industry experts select 20 events per month, and STS publicizes them throughout the United States. Events considered for the recognition must be at least three years old and have an attendance of at least 1,000.

MumFest is a combination of family fun, entertainment, attractions, exhibitors, and great food nestled in historic Downtown New Bern. MumFest 2021 is scheduled for October 9-10 and promises to be a fabulous fun-filled weekend. https://mumfest.com/

Havelock Chili Festival 2016

The Havelock Chili Festival is a family-friendly event that combines an International Chili Cook-off with a variety of exhibitors, activities, and entertainment.

Mark your calendar for October 15 & 16, 2021, and be sure to come hungry. https://chilifestival.org/

The Candlelight Christmas Celebration at Tryon Palace is a time-honored holiday tradition showcasing beautiful decorations and heartwarming vignettes illuminated by the magical glow of candlelight. The tours are typically held the second and third Saturdays in December. https://www.tryonpalace.org/calendar

The complete listing has not been posted yet. Here is the January-June 2021 list, with North Carolina events in bold face:

January-June 2021

  • January 6-February 16, 2021, Mardi Gras Southwest Louisiana, Lake Charles, LA, www.swlamardigras.com
  • January 16-18, 2021, Martin Luther King Jr. Festival, Lake Charles, LA, https://www.facebook.com/mlkswla/
  • January 30, 2021, 20th Annual African American Cultural Celebration, Raleigh, NC, https://www.ncmuseumofhistory.org/aacc-2021 This year the event will be virtual.
  • February 27, 2021, NHRMC Wilmington, NC Marathon, Wilmington, NC, https://www.wilmingtonncmarathon.com/
  • Select Weekends in March 2021, Shamrock City, Lookout Mountain, GA, www.seerockcity.com/shamrock
  • Fridays, March-September, 2021, Main Street Fridays, Greenville, SC, https://www.greenvillesc.gov/1322/Greenville-Heritage-Main-Street-Fridays
  • March 4-7, 2021, Bridge Crossing Jubilee, Selma, AL, https://www.selma50.com/ This year the event will be virtual.
  • March 13-14, 2021, Art in the Park: Art, Crafts & Music Festival, Brooksville, FL, https://www.hernandoarts.org/art-in-the-park
  • March 25-28, 2021, Festival of Flowers, Mobile, AL, https://festivalofflowers.com/
  • March 26-27, 2021, Springtime Tallahassee Festival, Tallahassee, FL, http://www.springtimetallahassee.com/
  • March 27-28, 2021, Conyers Cherry Blossom Festival, Conyers, GA, https://www.georgiahorsepark.com/p/calendar-of-events/conyers-cherry-blossom-festival
  • Select Weekends in April, EarthDayz, Lookout Mountain, GA, www.seerockcity.com/earthdayz
  • April 7-11, 2021, North Carolina Azalea Festival at Wilmington, Inc., Wilmington, NC, https://ncazaleafestival.org/
  • April 21-25, 2021, Beaufort Wine and Food Weekend, Beaufort, NC, www.beaufortwineandfood.com
  • April 22-25, 2021, Vidalia Onion Festival, Vidalia, GA, https://www.vidaliaonionfestival.com
  • April 30-May 9, 2021, Louisiana Pirate Festival, Lake Charles, LA, https://www.louisianapiratefestival.com/
  • Saturdays, May-October, 2021, Saturday Market, Greenville, SC, https://www.saturdaymarketlive.com/
  • Select Weekends in May 2021, Southern Blooms Festival, Lookout Mountain, GA, www.seerockcity.com/southernblooms
  • May 5-8, 2021, Pigeon Forge’s A Mountain Quiltfest, Pigeon Forge, TN, www.MyPigeonForge.com
  • May 7-8, 2021, Market Street Festival, Columbus, MS, www.marketstreetfestival.com
  • May 14, 21, 28 and June 4, 2021, Downtown at Sundown – Outdoor Concert Series, Lake Charles, LA, https://www.visitlakecharles.org
  • Weekends, Memorial Day-Labor Day, 2021, Summer Music Weekends, Lookout Mountain, GA, www.seerockcity.com/summermusic
  • June 4-6, 2021, Chennault International Airshow, Lake Charles, LA, https://chennaultairshow.com/
  • June 5-7, 2021, North Georgia Highlands Seafood and Wine Festival, Young Harris, GA, http://www.northgeorgiahighlandsseafoodfestival.com/
  • June 10, 24 and July 8, 22, 2021, Sounds of Summer, Columbus, MS, www.columbusmainstreet.com
  • June 11-13, 2021, Ferguson North American Sand Soccer Championships, Virginia Beach, VA, www.sandsoccer.com
  • June 25, 2021, Gulf Coast Shrimp & Jazz Festival, Lake Charles, LA, www.visitlakecharles.org