If you're a fall season traveler and heading out in October, you may want to drop in on one of these festivals in the West and beyond.
Minot, North Dakota
September 30-October 4
Nong Khai, Thailand
The Naga fireballs
An annual natural phenomenon during which hundreds of small, colorful fireballs rise out of the Mekong River and disappear into the air. Also: light-and-sound shows and a long-boat race.
Niagara Falls, New York
Niagara International Kite Festival
Kites from around the world fly over the Canadian and American sides of Niagara Falls while 30,000 spectators watch in awe. www.niagarakite.com
Albuquerque, New Mexico
The International Balloon Fiesta
Myriad colorful balloons in a renowned mass ascension. www.balloonfiesta.com
Great American Beer Festival
Mid-October to mid-November
National Gastronomy Festival. The country's main fair showcases the flavors of the nation's different regions. Go to the website for more information.
Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts
Martha's Vineyard Food & Wine Festival
A celebration of local, organic and eco-friendly foods; chefs, sommeliers and artisan food producers lead classes, demonstrations and tastings. www.mvfoodandwine.com
Half Moon Bay, California
Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival
The 38th annual fall harvest celebration will include live music, a pumpkin parade, a haunted house, autumn crafts, home-style foods, pie-eating, carving and costume contests, a 5K and 10K run - and massive pumpkins. www.miramarevents.com/pumpkinfest
October 27-November 4
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
October 30-November 3
What's said to be the largest boat show in the world is in its 49th year. The event will feature more than 1,600 vessels with 160 super yachts, marine supplies, accessories, electronics. Go to the boat show's website for more information.
Los Angeles, California
October 30-November 9
The American Film Institute's event showcases the works of new and established filmmakers. www.afi.com/afifest
West Hollywood, California
Halloween and Costume Carnaval
A huge, gay-friendly Halloween street party along Santa Monica Boulevard draws about 300,000 people, many of them outrageously costumed. www.visitwesthollywood.com/things-to-do/calendar