Enjoy the Best Gulf Shores and Orange Beach Events in the Fall

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Gulf Shores and Orange Beach is an awesome destination to visit year-round but having spent some time along this stretch of Alabama coastline during the fall season, we can well and truly attest that we consider this to be the best time to visit. Gorgeous weather, perfectly pristine white-sand beaches and a myriad of annual festivals that are scheduled make this the ideal time to book a trip to Alabama. We want to share some of the best Gulf Shores Orange Beach events that you should consider experiencing as they offer an iconic representation of this destination.

Whether you are a wine connoisseur or perhaps love the taste of local seafood, Gulf Shores and Orange Beach hosts a number of events that will quickly make you realize that this is a location you need to visit in the fall season. But that’s not all…a craft beer festival for your next guys getaway, an oyster cook-off and much more are all experiences you can enjoy in the latter part of the year as Gulf Shores and Orange Beach plans for an action-packed fall schedule.

gulf shores orange beach events

So, why exactly should you visit Gulf Shores and Orange Beach? Let’s take a look at five events scheduled annually during the fall season that may convince you to book a trip in the not too distant future.

gulf shores orange beach events

National Shrimp Festival

Event Schedule – October
Location: Gulf Shores Public Beach – 101 Gulf Shores Pkwy. Gulf Shores, AL 36542
Website: National Shrimp Festival

Ready to enjoy a weekend full of music, fun, culture and of course, DELICIOUS cuisine? The annual National Shrimp Festival in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach gives visitors the opportunity to sample the finest fresh seafood caught in the Gulf.

gulf shores orange beach national shrimp festival
Photo: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism.

The four-day event held annually in October frequently attracts over 300,000 visitors from across the globe. And we think that this number will only continue to grow in the future as more people learn about how amazing this experience is.

Did you know that 200lbs of shrimp are prepared fresh EVERY DAY of the event? Local chefs that specialize in preparing the finest shrimp will showcase their best dishes and give attendees the opportunity to sample these award-winning recipes. Perhaps you will be inspired to visit this October and leave with a new recipe that you can create when you head home!

Shrimp just about any way you want it, plus a great variety of seafood and non-seafood favorites. And don’t forget to try a Cajun pistol!

gulf shores and orange beach national shrimp festival
Photo: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism.

Delicious seafood isn’t the only attraction at the National Shrimp Festival. National, regional and local musicians perform for the visiting crowds while a number of activities including fishing and boating excursions are organized by local vendors for visitors to enjoy the best the Gulf has to offer.

If you read our recent post on why fall is the best time for a Gulf Shores Orange Beach getaway, you will know that there are plenty of reasons to enjoy this stretch of Alabama coastline in addition to the National Shrimp Festival.

national shrimp festival

Oyster Cook-Off and Craft Beer Weekend

Event Schedule – November
Location: The Hangout – 101 E. Beach Blvd. Gulf Shores, AL 36542
Website: Oyster Cook-Off and Craft Beer Weekend at The Hangout

Described as a “decadent afternoon of oysters and spirits,” the Oyster Cook-Off and Craft Beer experience is certainly one that everyone should be raring to attend…I know we are!! Held at the perfectly named “Hangout” in Gulf Shores, this event is one for all the family to enjoy.

oyster cook-off

Whether you are intrigued by the opportunity to sample the delicious oysters caught in the Gulf or prefer to sample a myriad of craft beers from local breweries, this weekend long event is sure to intrigue everyone. Stop by the North American Oyster Showcase to enjoy oysters not only from the Gulf but also from locations around the United States.

Which area has the best oysters is always up for debate but I’m sure you will agree that there is a reason Gulf Shores is picked as the location for this showcase! The annual festival not only gives local chefs the opportunity to demonstrate their talents in creating delicious oyster based dishes, it also gives experts in the art of “shucking” the chance to reveal which restaurant can lay claim to being the “King of Oyster Shucking!”

gulf shores orange beach events

Don’t be late for this annual event that starts each year on Friday because you won’t want to miss the craft beer festival. As I mentioned, local breweries showcase their finest beer selections and guests are given a souvenir cup along with unlimited (that’s right, UNLIMITED!) craft beer tastings.

If you have read this section thinking that you need to love oysters in order to enjoy this festival, don’t worry, there is plenty to experience away from the oysters. In fact, several of the local Gulf Shores and Orange Beach restaurants participating in this event are always preparing signature dishes for visitors to sample so you can be assured that there will be something for everyone to salivate over.

I didn’t even have time to mention the desserts on display…but I don’t want to give away too much information as you will just have to attend for yourselves!

The Wharf Uncorked Wine and Culinary Event

Event Schedule – September
Location: The Wharf in Orange Beach, 4830 Main St. Orange Beach, AL 36561
Website: The Wharf Uncorked Wine and Culinary Event

Get ready to sample some of the finest wines local to Alabama along with a myriad of other domestic and imported flavors at the annual Wharf Uncorked Wine and Culinary Event.

combines tastings of delicious food and tantalizing wines, live entertainment, a pinch of southern flare and a dash of Gulf Coast hospitality. (The Wharf Uncorked)

The beauty of this event for wine connoisseurs is that you can spend all day sampling these delicious flavors before deciding which ones you want to purchase and take home after your experience in Orange Beach. But it’s not just wine that you can enjoy…instead, a selection of local top chefs will be on hand to offer a plethora of dishes that are the perfect accompaniment to your favorite wine.

wharf uncorked wine and culinary event

Food demos, tasting stations, cookbook signings and even cooking competitions are all scheduled throughout the three-day event at the Wharf. The location of this event also enables visitors the opportunity to experience one of the highlight attractions in Orange Beach.

the wharf orange beach
Photo: Gulf Shores & Orange Beach Tourism.

The Wharf is renowned as being a boating destination unlike anywhere else you have likely ever experienced before. Dining, entertainment, and fun attractions can all be found here and I cannot think of any better location to hold the annual Uncorked Wine and Culinary Event.

World Food Championships

Event Schedule – November
Location: The Wharf in Orange Beach, 4830 Main St. Orange Beach, AL 36561
Website: World Food Championships

Renowned as the largest food competition in the world, Orange Beach is proud to be the home of the World Food Championships that have been held here since 2015 (prior to that it was held in Las Vegas but the organizers soon realized where the home of food really is!)

world food championships

Culinary experts from across the globe attend the World Food Championships with aspirations of taking home the ultimate food crown. A share of $300,000 is understandably an attraction for food experts and since its debut in 2012, 30 TV food stars have been found at this event.

Orange Beach is the perfect location for this event given the proud seafood heritage this destination possesses. From delicious oysters celebrated at the Oyster Cook-Off to the National Shrimp Festival, the World Food Championships are the perfect culmination to a variety of food-related events this destination offers. Here is a quick breakdown of the various World Food Championship titles on offer each year:

  • Barbecue
  • Burger
  • Chili
  • Seafood
  • Dessert
  • Sandwich
  • Bacon
  • Recipe (Chicken)
  • Steak
  • World Chef Challenge

There are numerous ways to eat, compete and enjoy the World Food Championships regardless of your culinary background. The beauty of this event for attendees is that it is 100% FREE so you can gain plenty of culinary inspiration without any admission fees. I don’t know about you but I’m getting hungry just reading this list of amazing titles on offer!

Brett Robinson Annual Coastal Triathlon

Event Schedule – September
Location: Gulf Shores Public Beach – 101 Gulf Shores Pkwy. Gulf Shores, AL 36542
Website: Brett Robinson Annual Coastal Triathlon

After reading about all this amazing food that Gulf Shores and Orange Beach has to offer and celebrate, why not burn a few calories at the Brett Robinson Annual Coastal Triathlon that is held in September?

coastal triathlon alabama

A 1.5km swim in the Gulf of Mexico (I bet there are not too many triathlons around the globe that start with a swim in a better location!), a 40km bike ride through the state park and finally, a 10km scenic run.

gulf shores orange beach triathlon

For those of you that perhaps thinks this event sounds a little overwhelming, why not consider opting for the “Try-it-on” event which is a little shorter – a 300-yard swim, 9-mile bike ride and 2-mile run.

Regardless of which event you choose to participate in, this is a great way to exercise, show your competitive instinct and most importantly, explore some of Gulf Shores and Orange Beach’s breathtaking landscapes.

gulf shores orange beach events

Summary

Fall is definitely the best time to be in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach! Whether you are looking for the perfect excuse for a guys getaway (or girls getaway even!) or you have a strong passion for one of the amazing events on offer, this is undoubtedly a destination that should be on your radar. For the foodies out there, I can’t think of any better place than Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.

Which Gulf Shores Orange Beach events are you inspired to visit? For us, the World Food Championships would definitely be a cool event to attend simply because of the prestige and opportunity to see so many amazing culinary experts in action. But the Oyster Cook-Off and Craft Beer Weekend sounds like the perfect way to relax and enjoy a combination that epitomizes Gulf Shores and Orange Beach!

3 COMMENTS

  1. Being from New Orleans, Orange Beach is a great spot for us to get a quick getaway (about 2 hours or so) to the beach without having the swampiness of the mississippi river dumping into the gulf. Though I havent been there for any of these great food festivals. I will have to make a trip over to the Oyster or Shrimp festival.
    I didnt remember a ferris wheel there either. Going to have to tell Darcee cause she loves them.
    Eric || The Bucket List Project recently posted…My Anti-Bucket List: Things I don’t want to do before I dieMy Profile

    • Agree with you completely Samantha! Not that we need any more excuses to return to GSOB but these are definitely events worth making return trips for!

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