Annual Events

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Always the Saturday of Labor Day Weekend, this celebration of labor lets little ones climb in an explore their favorite machines: Trucks, diggers and so much more. No admission is charged but non-perishable food items are collected for Harvesters: The Community Food Bank. 

Huff ‘n Puff Hot Air Balloon Festival
Watch more than 30 colorful hot air balloons launch over Mt. Hope Cemetery at 7 a.m. Beginning at 6 p.m., watch them tether and glow or experience a tethered balloon ride. Every September in the Capitol City.

Jazz & Food Truck Festival
Join Visit Topeka, Downtown Topeka, Inc. and thousands of your friends for an evening of nationally-renowned jazz and dozens of food trucks from across the region at 9th and S. Kansas Ave.

Cider Days
Northeast Kansas’ largest arts and crafts festival also features food, a petting zoo, entertainment, live history re-enactments and more at the Kansas Expocentre annually in September.

Kansas Chocolate Festival
If you love chocolate, you can't miss this epic day. Learn how to cook with chocolate through a variety of stage demonstrations. Try the regions best chocolates as chocolatiers travel to Topeka to sell product and vendors have chocolate-themed items as well. New for 2017: A children's play zone and Chocolate After Dark, a ticketed event for a VIP experience. 

Apple Festival
Experience the life of a pioneer at Old Prairie Town. This local favorite event includes living history demonstrations, musicians, an arts and crafts festival and a variety of culinary delights, including a sampling of all things apple- in caramel, pie, fritters and cider. Don’t miss out the first weekend in October at Old Prairie Town.

Ribs & Bibs Music Festival
Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the first weekend in October, head to Heartland Park for barbeque and some of the best country artists touring now. Tickets are required.

Topeka Science & Tech Fest
Explore science, technology, engineering and math with Visit Topeka, 712innovations and our partners at this Science Festival Alliance festival. Free admission and tons of hands-on fun for toddlers through eighth-graders on Kansas Avenue.

Mother Earth News Fair
This fun-filled, family-oriented sustainable lifestyle event that features 150-plus practical, hands-on demonstrations and workshops from the leading authorities on gardening, cooking and food preservation, renewable energy, small-scale agriculture, green building, green transportation and natural health. Learn practical ways to save money and become more self-sufficient and sustainable.

Salute our Heroes Festival & Veterans Parade
Organized by the Military Veteran Project, this festival carries on the traditions of honoring the service and sacrifice of veterans, offering the public the opportunity to show its support for those who serve on our nation's most visible stage, at the State Capitol of Kansas and along Kansas Avenue.



Miracle on Kansas Avenue
If you love parades you won't want to miss this one, Thanksgiving Weekend, in Downtown Topeka. This annual favorite follows the lighting of the City of Topeka Christmas tree. 

Carriage rides, holiday characters, live reindeer and other surprises create a special shopping experience downtown in early December. 

Winter Wonderland
Enjoy a spectacle of holiday lights as you drive a two-mile loop at Lake Shawnee. This is a fundraiser event that charges per car-load and runs nightly from late November through December.

Kansas Day
Commemorate Kansas’ statehood by visiting the Kansas Museum of History, the State Capitol and other historic sites throughout the state. January 29.

Kansas Silent Film Festival
Enjoy silent comedy and dramatic films with live musical accompaniment at the annual festival located at Washburn University’s White Concert Hall.



St. Patrick's Day Celebration
A Topeka tradition featuring the Great Topeka Bed Race, followed by the St. Patrick’s Day Parade at noon and additional festivities through the day in downtown Topeka.

Tulip Time
Spring is breathtaking in Topeka! See thousands of tulips and daffodils in picturesque gardens around town, including Ted Ensley Gardens at Lake Shawnee, Old Prairie Town and Gage Park’s Reinisch Rose Garden and Doran Rock Garden. Takes place every year in April.

Combat Air Museum Annual Pancake Feed
Feast on all-you-can-eat pancakes prepared by local celebrities and enjoy a variety of entertainment. Tour the museum’s extensive display of aircraft, artifacts and military aviation art. Located at Forbes Field every spring.

Designer’s Showhouse
Tour an elegant home that has been completely redecorated by local designers. Have lunch and stroll through the unique gift shop, with proceeds benefiting Child Care Aware of Northeast and North Central Kansas. Every year in May.

Country & Food Trucks
Join Visit Topeka, Downtown Topeka, Inc. and thousands of your friends for an evening of country music and dozens of food trucks from across the region at 9th and S. Kansas Ave.



Mulvane Art Fair
Art comes alive at the Mulvane Mountain/Plains Art Fair held on Washburn University’s campus. View stunning works from more than 90 artists. Enjoy hands-on art-making activities, live music, and a food court. The first weekend in June.

Capital City Family and Food Truck Festival
Visit Topeka gathers more food trucks than anyone for this annual favorite. You'll find something for every palate and family member. Plus games, magicians and more!

Sunflower Music Festival
An annual series of donation-only orchestra concerts, chamber music, and jazz at White Concert Hall on the Washburn University campus. World-renowned musicians from across the North and South America perform. 2018: June 22-30.

Heartland Military Day
Start your day with a pancake feed, followed by Civil War and WWII battle re-enactments, special exhibits, Big Band and Swing concerts and more at the Museum of the Kansas National Guard at Forbes Field. Check it out in June.

Rotary Freedom Festival
This day-long festival includes historical reenactments with cannon -- commemorating the disbanding of the Free State Legislature by federal soldiers in 1856 at Constitution Hall, music, food, art and so much more, on both sides of the Kansas River. Always held the last Saturday in June, from 4th to 6th, and at the river. No admission, but food trucks and vendors will charge. 

Spirit of Kansas Blues Festival
Sing the blues with musicians from all over the United States at the Spirit of Kansas Blues Festival at Lake Shawnee. Enjoy food and arts and craft alongside live rhythm and blues. July 4th.

Fiesta Mexicana
Celebrate Topeka’s Mexican culture during this annual event that includes a parade downtown and five nights of traditional Mexican food, music, and dancing in the Oakland neighborhood every July- near Our Lady of Guadalupe Church.

Rock & Food Trucks
Join Visit Topeka, Downtown Topeka, Inc. and thousands of your friends for an evening of rock music and dozens of food trucks from across the region at 9th and S. Kansas Ave.

Cruisin The Capitol
This car show at the Kansas Statehouse is one of a kind. Registration is open to all makes, models, years and styles. Free and open to the public. Food trucks, beer gardens and more on-site plus the August Second Saturday Concert Series follows at Celtic Fox. Rain or shine.