14 Things To Do in Cincinnati This Weekend (Oct. 15-17)

From a Bluegrass & BBQ festival to HallZOOween, a wizard-themed pub crawl to Charm at the Farm vintage market, here are 14 things to do this weekend.

Oct 14, 2021 at 3:10 pm
click to enlarge Charm at the Farm - Photo: Provided by Charm at the Farm
Photo: Provided by Charm at the Farm
Charm at the Farm

Cincinnati is in the spooky spirit this weekend with free horror movie screenings, a wizard-themed pub crawl and HallZOOween at the Cincinnati Zoo. There are also several shopping opportunities, including a special pop-up on a former horse farm in Lebanon, plus a Fall Food Fest at Findlay Market. 

Need more ideas for things to do this weekend? Check out our Fall Guide for a collection of autumnal fun, like where to find U-pick pumpkin patches and 10 haunted houses.

Friday, Oct. 15

A still from 1977 horror movie House - Photo: Provided by the Cincinnati Art Museum
Photo: Provided by the Cincinnati Art Museum
A still from 1977 horror movie House

Horror Film Fest at the Cincinnati Art Museum

UPDATE: This event has been postponed due to weather. The CAM says, "We will reschedule an indoor screening in 2022, so stay tuned for future updates."

If you're looking for a more high-brow horror experience this Halloween, the Cincinnati Art Museum is screening two bizarrely wonderful freaky films in its parking lot. During its Horror Film Fest: Haunted, the CAM will present a double feature of 1977's House and 1962's Carnival of Souls. Films are free to watch and will be screened near the top of the Art Climb. If it rains or there is severe weather, the event will be canceled, so check the CAM's social media. 7:30 p.m. Oct. 15. Free admission. Cincinnati Art Museum, 953 Eden Park Drive, Mount Adams, cincinnatiartmuseum.org.

Bluegrass & BBQ at Alms Park

Alms Park in Columbia Tusculum is hosting a cozy little fall event this Friday. During Bluegrass & BBQ, guests can enjoy both titular items. Vernon McIntyre's Appalachian Grass will play a free concert, and Eli's BBQ and Rollin' Bowls will be offering up eats. There will also be free pumpkins and draft beer. 6-9 p.m. Oct. 15. Free admission. 710 Tusculum Ave., Columbia Tusculum, facebook.com.

Cincinnati Taco Week

What's better than Taco Tuesday? A whole week of cheap tacos. During the fourth-annual Cincinnati Taco Week, participating eateries are offering $2 specialty tacos. Some restaurants are even serving up three different unique tacos. Select locations are offering Karrikin Blaze Agave Spirit margaritas, as well. To held guide your taco quest, grab an official Cincinnati Taco Week passport. Get a stamp at each restaurant for each order of tacos (minimum three tacos per order) and an extra stamp for each Karrikin cocktail. Through Oct. 17. Find more info, participating restaurants and menus at cincytacoweek.com.

Saturday, Oct. 16

click to enlarge Fiona the hippo enjoying a pumpkin during HallZOOween at the Cincinnati Zoo - Photo: Lisa Hubbard/Cincinnati Zoo
Photo: Lisa Hubbard/Cincinnati Zoo
Fiona the hippo enjoying a pumpkin during HallZOOween at the Cincinnati Zoo

HallZOOween at the Cincinnati Zoo

For the remaining weekends in October, the Cincinnati Zoo is undergoing a transformation for HallZOOween. Guests can enjoy special themed activities, including a Hogwarts Express Train Ride and Scare-ousel. Kids can bring their own bags and visit trick-or-treat stations set up throughout the grounds, or check out Phil Dalton's Theater of Illusion magic show. There will also be fall treats, three hidden — and costumed — Fiona statues to find and pumpkin fun for the animals. Family-friendly costumes are encouraged. Noon-5 p.m. Oct. 16-17, 23-24, 30-31. Included with zoo admission (except rides). 3400 Vine St., Avondale, cincinnatizoo.org.

Wizard Pub Crawl

The fifth-annual Cincinnati Wizard Pub Crawl is taking off — not from platform 9¾, but perhaps from a more magical place: a bar. This Saturday, all wizards, witches and muggles are invited to "celebrate wizardry, drink potions and party all night long," says event producer Bar Crawl USA — aka get drunk in Harry Potter-themed costumes. Tickets include a wand, costume contest, trivia and access to drink specials at participating bars, including a sparkling Felix Felicis cocktail at Revel OTR; Slytherin Lemonade shots at The Drinkery; and Butterbeers at Pins. 2-10 p.m. Oct. 16. $25. Check-in at Below Zero Lounge, 1120 Walnut St., Over-the-Rhine from 2-5 p.m. Tickets and info at barcrawlusa.com.

Charm at the Farm

Held on the grounds of a 56-acre former horse farm in Lebanon, Ohio, the Charm at the Farm weekend pop-up features everything from vintage furniture and farmhouse-style gifts to clothing and jewelry from more than 115 vendors. There will also be a special "harvest-centric" photobooth, commemorative Charm at the Farm swag, a lounge styled by The Pop Up BNB and fall-themed food and drinks (apple cider, caramel apples, etc.). Entry is ticketed and must be purchased online in advance for all dates and times except Sunday, when tickets will be available at the gate. 3:30-7 p.m. VIP Oct. 15; 9 a.m.-11:30 a.m. early bird Oct. 16; noon-4 p.m. general admission Oct. 16; 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Oct. 17. $15 early bird; $10 Saturday; $8 Sunday; VIP sold out; free for 12 and younger. 4953 Bunnell Hill Road, Lebanon, charmatthefarm.com.

Fall Food Fest at Findlay Market

Findlay Market is celebrating the season with a weekend-long Fall Food Fest. Vendors, merchants and farmers will be offering fall dishes for guests to sample, including pumpkin spice chai black tea from Churchill's, pumpkin hummus and cinnamon pita from Dean's Mediterranean Imports and a pumpkin bagel with cream cheese from OTR Bagel Bar. There will also be drink specials and live music all weekend. Tickets are required and one ticket equals one sample. Purchase them online at eventbrite.com or in person at the Market Center in the market house. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 16 and 17. Tickets are $10 for five samples or $20 for 12. Findlay Market, 1801 Race St., Over-the-Rhine, findlaymarket.org.

Fall on Fourth

Downtown Cincinnati's Historic West Fourth Street district is transforming into one of the city's newest shopping destinations. And 3CDC is helping boost its profile with participating retailers during "Fall on Fourth." On Saturday, merchants will be offering special deals or discounts, along with a special passport. Complete the passport and return it to Rebel Mettle Brewery for a chance to win a grand prize. Passports are available at all participating shops, including Forage, Koko, Handzy. Gumdrop and more. 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 16. West Fourth St., Downtown. For more info, visit the  Fall on Fourth Facebook event page.

Elvis Costello & The Imposters at the ICON

Elvis Costello & The Imposters are on their first U.S. tour in more than a year and are stopping by the ICON Music Center at The Banks. Costello will be performing songs from his entire oeuvre, so fans can hope for hits like "Alison," "Everyday I Write the Book" and "She." Fans are required to show a negative COVID test from the past 72 hours or proof of vaccination for entry. 7 p.m. doors Oct. 16. Tickets start at $20. 25 Race St., Downtown, iconmusiccenter.com.

Sunday, Oct. 17

Burlington Antique Show - Photo: facebook.com/burlingtonantiqueshow
Photo: facebook.com/burlingtonantiqueshow
Burlington Antique Show

Burlington Antique Show

Your final opportunity to shop the Burlington Antique Show this year takes place Sunday. As the Midwest’s premier antique market, more than 200 dealers converged to exhibit and sell their authentic wares — Midcentury Modern, Art Deco, pre-war, Industrial and more. The fall edition of the market is a great opportunity to stock up on unique holiday gifts. 6 a.m.-3 p.m. Oct. 17. $4 starting at 8 a.m.; $6 early bird from 6-8 a.m. Boone County Fairgrounds, 5819 Idlewild Road, Burlington, burlingtonantiqueshow.com.       

Hocus Pocus Halloween: Sanderson Sisters Radio Hour

The Sanderson sisters are back from the dead and heading to Woodburn Brewery for a special Hocus Pocus-themed radio hour. This "socially distanced, song, dance, and scary storytelling spectacular" features actors portraying Winifred, Mary and Sarah Sanderson from the beloved Disney film. The trio has commandeered WBOO Salem Radio and are ready to put a spell on you. 7 p.m. Oct. 17. $15 presale; $20 at the door (if tickets remain); $5 kids. 2800 Woodburn Ave., East Walnut Hills, eventbrite.com. 

Romeo and Juliet at the Cincinnati Shakespeare Company

The Cincinnati Shakespeare Company (CSC) is back after a 580-day hiatus — and what better way to return than with one of the Bard’s most performed plays: Romeo and Juliet, the tragic tale of star-crossed lovers who hail from long feuding families, the Montagues and Capulets. Set in sun-dappled Verona, Italy during the Renaissance, CSC’s staging — the seventh in company history — creates the perfect mood for a doomed, tender, lusty romance. It leans furthest into the latter, however, as it is ripe with filthy innuendos and horny one-liners. Through Nov. 13. Tickets start at $14. 1195 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine, cincyshakes.com. Read CityBeat's review at citybeat.com

Mounds of Mums at the Krohn Conservatory

Enjoy a stroll through rows of beautiful and aromatic flowers this fall at the Krohn Conservatory. Guests can enjoy lavender, rosemary, asters, succulents and, of course, mums at the Mounds of Mums floral show. Miniature crevice gardens will also be on display in the showroom and are in hypertufa (lightweight concrete) planters. Some will be planted with hardy succulents and others with indoor succulents. Through Oct. 17. $10 adults; $7 ages 5-17; free for children ages 4 and under. 1501 Eden Park Drive, Mount Adams, cincinnatiparks.com/krohn.

Urban Pumpkin Patch

Can't make it out to a farm to pick a pumpkin? Well, in Covington, the pumpkins are coming to you. The Kenton County Library is hosting a special "urban pumpkin patch" on Sunday. Pick the perfect pumpkin to take home to carve or, the library says, you can decorate it at the Covington branch. 2-4 p.m. Oct. 17. 502 Scott Blvd., Covington, facebook.com.

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