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Butler Fall Festival: Western Pennsylvania's Premier Fall Family Event

Butler, Pennsylvania, is a getaway destination that embraces its historical significance while offering a multitude of outdoor activities and events to enjoy. Make the trip and find out why Smithsonian Magazine listed it as one of America's Best Small Towns.


Founded in the early 19th Century, settlers quickly recognized the area for its wealth of natural resources. Butler established itself as a hub for the steel, oil, and automotive industries by the beginning of the 20th Century. The people of the town take great pride in their blue collar roots and you’ll find plenty of opportunities to learn about Butler's past. Let the Butler County Historical Society set the tone for your historical adventure. You’ll find all the general information about the city's history along with the historical sites and buildings scattered around town. The Senator Walter Lowrie House is a location listed on the National Registery of Historic Places that you won’t want to miss. The home has been beautifully maintained and features a large collection of furnishings and architecture from the early 1800’s. The Little Red Schoolhouse is a great historical attraction featuring living history classes, allowing visitors of all ages to experience a day in the life of a student in the 1800’s.


Although Butler’s history is on display at various locations, that’s not the only reason to travel here. The town lays claim to a variety of fun outdoor activities for you to sink your teeth into. Golf is popular in the area and you’ll encounter a variety course layouts like Aubrey's Dubbs Dred, Conley Resort, and Lake Arthur Golf Club. The courses provide you with the ideal opportunity to enjoy a challenging round, while getting to see some of town's scenic natural surroundings. Local parks provide you with another outlet to enjoy nature and fun outdoor activities. You’ll find everything from bird watching to kayaking at locations such as Alameda Park, Succop Nature Park, and Moraine State Park.


The ideal way to experience this unique community is during one of its big community events. The Butler Fall Festival is a family friendly spectacular heading into its 38th year. This impressive event is one of the largest in the county with over 10,000 people expected in attendance. This event truly has something for everyone. You can spend your time drooling over the cars at the antique auto show or relax and listen to some great live jazz music. If you plan on attending with children, make sure to check out the speciality children’s area. Between the food vendors and restaurants in town, you’ll find just about any meal you’re looking for. got the chance to interview Dahn Kilroy, Vice President of the Butler Fall Festival, to talk about this great family expierece.


RAL: Tell me a little bit about the event.

DK: This is the 38th annual Butler Fall Festival. The festival hosts 10,000-30,000 people each year and has information, entertainment and shopping. The event is a fall street festival with unique bands, martial arts performances, a car cruise, as well as a wide and delicious variety of festival foods.


RAL: Take me through a day at the event.

DK: As a guest of the event, you will stroll down our beautiful Main Street and delight in an antique car show, while indulging in an ice cream cone. As you approach New Castle Street, you can enjoy the sounds of a Jazz band, or the expertise of a martial arts demonstration. Further down the street you’ll see dozens of crafters at work and have the chance to procure a treasure for your very own. Only a block or two more to travel and the smells of wonderful festival foods waft through the air, tempting your taste buds. The most difficult part of this tranquil day is determining which of the delicious fare to consume! The children’s area is located at the end of the street in Diamond Park. Watch out for the kiddie train! It is circling the children’s area and provides an electrifying view of all of the fun. While you are visiting our striking city, be sure to stop in at our fine restaurants and gift shops, open on either side of the festival booths.


RAL: What can an attendee expect to find for local lodging?

DK: Butler has five conveniently located hotels, plus a brand new one downtown set to open by 2017. Several bed and breakfasts are available in the area for a more unique stay including Heather Hill Inn, Inn at Mount Chestnut B&B, and Locust Brook Lodge.


RAL: What does the event mean to the community?

DK: The Butler Fall Festival has become a part of the fiber of our community. It draws people from far away to experience the atmosphere and talents of our small city. In addition to being a relaxing, peaceful day for guests, we are driving business for the local economy.  We are thrilled to have guests take advantage of the many other local attractions, as well as stay for the weekend, dine, shop, and frolic in our lovely parks.


RAL: Why should people come to your event?

DK: In addition to the festival, downtown Butler has great restaurants and shops, including two new microbreweries. The city of Butler is in the heart of Butler County which has an amazing state park, golf courses, wineries, museums, historical sites and much more. It is an affordable getaway that visitors of all ages can enjoy.

For more information about the Butler Fall Festival, please visit their website.