8 August festivals in Alabama—okra, watermelon, BBQ and more

Hog Days Of Summer Bbq &Amp; Music Festival
This is going to be a good time. (Hog Days of Summer BBQ & Music Festival / Facebook)

Welcome to August, Alabama! Get ready for some fun (and out-of-the-box) celebrations this month. Here are 8 festivals you need to know about—make sure to have your calendar handy.

1. Smoke in the Outfield BBQ Festival in Madison

What’s more summery than barbecue on a baseball field? Toyota Field (home of the Rocket City Trash Pandas) is hosting a a two-day festival, Smoke in the Outfield, with music, mechanical bull rides, games, activities for the kids and, of course, barbecue.

2. Clay County Yellow-Meated Watermelon Festival in Ashland

Watermelon Festival
Have you ever tried this unusual melon? (Clay County Alabama Yellow Meated Watermelon Festival / Facebook)

Summertime in Alabama certainly calls for watermelon. But in Clay County, summertime means yellow-meated watermelon. The Clay County Alabama Yellow Meated Watermelon Festival is an annual celebration of the unique melon species, complete with antique cars, music, historic exhibits and activities for kids.

3. 3rd Annual Mitchell’s Place Dragon Boat Race + Festival

Dragon Boat Race
Who’s ready to race? (Jacob Blankenship / Bham Now)

At this year’s Mitchell Place Dragon Boat Race + Festival, 25 teams will compete for titles like Best Drummer and Most Team Spirit—and 1st, 2nd and 3rd place, of course. Each 46-foot-long dragon boat holds 20 paddlers and one drummer (in costume!). There will also be a Bloody Mary contest and local vendors for a fun-filled day benefiting an impactful local nonprofit, Mitchell’s Place.

4. Franklin County Watermelon Festival

A long-time favorite is back again this year—the 42nd Annual (yes, 42nd) Franklin County Watermelon Festival! It’s a celebration in Downtown Russellville that goes all-out to celebrate watermelon, with live music, a 5k, watermelon contests, free watermelon and a presentation of the Watermelon Pageant Queens.

5. Dauphin Street Beer Fest in Mobile

The 25th Annual Dauphin Street Beer Festival is happening at the end of this month, featuring 42 beers from all over the world. This festival brings together 14 different Mobile venues—from saloons to Irish pubs—for one incredible evening

6. UFO Days Festival in Fyffe

Ufo Days Fyffe Festival
They’re not actual UFOs. (Fyffe UFO Days / Facebook)

With all the talk about UFOs these days, this festival’s name sure does garner some attention. Don’t worry—there won’t be any actual UFOs. Instead, the 18th Annual UFO Days Festival will feature vendors, local entertainment, antique cars and tractors, kids’ activities and hot air balloons—the main event.

7. Hog Days of Summer BBQ + Music Festival in Montgomery

Hog Days Of Summer Festival
There’s plenty for everyone. (Hog Days of Summer BBQ & Music Festival / Facebook)

Not only does this festival feature incredible barbecue, it also brings together some show-stopping musicians. This year, Daniel Donato, Delvon Lamarr, Drivin’ n’ Cryin’ and Souther Avenue will take the stage while the crowd enjoy all kinds of barbecue and the exciting atmosphere inside Union Station.

8. Okra Festival in Lowndes County

Every year in the little town of Lowndesboro, okra lovers from around the state come to enjoy both the art and okra of the Okra Festival. This annual event was founded to celebrate the history and culture of Lowndes County, and it has grown to become a significant event featuring area artists and farmers.

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Sarah Gronberg
Sarah Gronberg
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