Cheekwood Harvest opens for the season – The Vanderbilt Hustler

Nashville’s favorite annual fall festival is now open to visitors, with attractions including pumpkin houses, the Halloween Pooch Parade, and a celebration for El Día de los Muertos.

Is it possible to decorate everything with pumpkins? Cheekwood Harvest responds with a resounding “yes”. (Photo from

It’s finally fall in Nashville, and a favorite annual celebration reopens just in time for the season. If the change of leaves, pumpkin spice, and Halloween make you all smile, then Cheekwood Harvest is for you.

Cheekwood Harvest, held annually at the Cheekwood Estate and Botanical Gardens as one of their four seasonal festivals, offers plenty of fall attractions. The six-week celebration began last weekend September 18 and remains open until Halloween.

The Pumpkin Houses are a perfect fall photoshoot at Cheekwood Harvest. (Photo from

The number and diversity of trees, including oaks, maples and dogwoods, create an ethereal fall experience as they shed their colorful leaves. And of course, the festival offers activities and experiences for all age groups. Some highlights include not one, but two life-size pumpkin houses in Pumpkin Village, an explosion of chrysanthemums in the gardens, and Cheekwood Beer Garden events.

Children, teens and adults can also look forward to the Season’s Dog Parade, which this year takes place on October 23. In this special eight-hour parade, costumed dogs parade around the estate, competing for awards like “Best Adult Owner and Dog Combo,” “Scariest Costume” and the estimated grand prize. Local vendors such as Painted Paw Studio, Proverbs 12:10, Doggie Joggers and Poodoo Leash will be giving away prizes to the winners.

Not only that, but food trucks will also be arriving on site for human friends, including Daddy’s Dogs, 4 Paws Pastries, and Nashville Chicken and Waffles. Whether you are attending the Pooch Parade as a participant or just taking pictures of well dressed doggies, there is sure to be something for everyone. Cheekwood requires advance reservations for this special event, but it’s well worth it. Check them here.

Thursday Nights Out is just one of many series of special events being held as part of this year’s festival. (Photo from

Customers can also look forward to a celebration for El Día de los Muertos on October 30. This significant celebration in Mexico and the countries of Latin America involves lively decor and exciting music, and Cheekwood will bring these traditions to life with traditional music and dance, as well as authentic art and food. Again, these tickets require advance reservation.

Even if you don’t stop by Cheekwood Harvest for the parade or the Día de los Muertos festival, be sure to visit this season’s pumpkin village and beer garden (if you’re over 18, duh). Personally, I can’t think of a better start to fall.

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