shrimp fest, gulf shores

Top Four Annual Fall Events

Find fall fun at these top four annual events.

If you love fall, you’re really going to love fall in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach! It’s the perfect time of year to visit the beach. Get some sun, enjoy the sand and dip your toes in our warm Gulf waters. While you’re here, take part in some of the most happening events along the Alabama Gulf Coast!

Here are four fabulous annual events you won’t want to miss!

Annual National Shrimp Festival at Gulf Place

  • Shrimp Fest is an outdoor festival where you can eat, dance and start your Christmas shopping early! Go early on Thursday and meet some locals as the event gets underway.
  • The festival is at Gulf Place, the main public beach in Gulf Shores.
  • It’s always the first full weekend in October.
  • The first Annual National Shrimp Festival was in 1971, and it’s still going strong. Need we say more? Well, how about Cajun pistols… Try this delicious snack while you’re there. They’re a crowd favorite, and you can’t have just one! 
oyster fest, gulf shores

Oyster Cook-Off at The Hangout

  • The Oyster Cook-off is a hub of fresh and prepared oysters from all over the United States with celebrity chefs, cooking demos and big prizes in store for competing teams.
  • The cook-off takes place at The Hangout Restaurant and Gulf Place, “where 59 ends and the fun begins.”
  • The event is the first Saturday in November. It begins with a craft beer festival leading into the weekend on Friday.
  • This is your chance to try dozens of raw oysters from all over the country and hundreds of mouth-watering preparations by Southern chefs.


Frank Brown International Songwriters Festival at Flora-Bama and various locations

  • This is an authentic songwriters’ festival. It’s named after a former Flora-Bama watchman of 28 years. His enduring character remains and is honored by this event as renowned singer-songwriters travel to the Alabama Gulf Coast to play their songs to appreciative ears at local roadhouses.
  • The festival is held at the Flora-Bama and other participating locations throughout Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.
  • The festival lasts two full weeks beginning on a Thursday leading into the second weekend in November.
  • Listen to songwriters play their own songs; see, feel and hear the heart that went into writing them.

Kaiser Realty by Wyndham Vacation Rentals Coastal Half Marathon, 5K and 1-Mile Fun Run

  • This is one of three half marathon races in the Run the Beach series that takes place in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach.
  • The course begins at the Orange Beach Sportsplex; participants will run the paved trails into moderate hills and throughout distinct ecosystems at Gulf State Park.
  • This event is in November – the Saturday after Thanksgiving. The other two Run the Beach races are in January and February.
  • Set aside extra time this holiday season to enjoy the solitude of running and the benefits it brings you. Bring your loved ones in on the fun. If you complete all three Run the Beach races, you get an extra medal, discount eligibility and other cool swag! 

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