The East Texas Piney Woods region has a unique culture to go along with its amazing natural setting. Amidst the deep woods, towering pine trees and sprawling lakes, visitors will find a number of festivals and events staged throughout the year. Many of these festivals and events highlight the region's historic charm. From catfish to azaleas, holiday lights to roses, there is a myriad of different celebrations taking place throughout the year in the East Texas Piney Woods region.
The Tyler Azalea Trail, which has been staged annually for more than five decades, is one of the oldest and largest flower trails in Texas. The Tyler Azalea Trail actually consists of two trails: the Dobbs Trail and the Lindsey Trail. Both trails begin at the intersection of South Broadway and Houston in Tyler. The Dobbs Trail splits at the first intersection on Broadway south of the starting point, while the Lindsey Trail branches off one block further south. The Lindsey Trail is the original trail. Due to the popularity of the event, a second trail was added. The combined distance of the two trail is about 8 miles.
Staged annually since the late 1980s, the Jasper Azalea Festival is one of Texas' more popular spring flower festivals. Set around the historic Jasper County Courthouse, the Jasper Azalea Festival has an old-time charm and small town feel. In addition to seeing plenty of blooming azaleas, visitors can view an arts and crafts show, quilt show, classic car contest and cake decorating contest. There is also a kiddie carnival, live music, food and more.
Billed as "An East Texas Celebration of the Arts," Longview's Alley Fest has something for everyone. This annual East Texas arts festival includes an art show, live music, a chili cookoff, and 10k, 5k and 1-mile races.
Started in 1933, the Texas Rose Festival has become part of the fabric of life in Tyler. The Rose Parade is just part of the fun, that includes the Coronation Ball and the East Texas Symphony Orchestra’s “Concert in the Park.” Don’t forget to visit the Rose Museum while visiting the “Rose Capital of the Nation.”
Held annual for more than two decades, the Conroe Cajun Catfish Festival is one of the largest events of its type in Texas. Events associated with the Conroe Cajun Catfish Festival include a catfishing contest on Lake Conroe, wine and food tastings, arts and crafts exhibits, and live music on four stages.
Founded in 1997, the Nine Flags Festival has become one of the most popular holiday celebrations in Texas. Held in Nacogdoches, the state's oldest town, the Nine Flags Festival celebrates all of the various cultures that have influenced Texas through time.
Texarkana's annual Twice As Bright Festival begins the day after Thanksgiving and runs through January 2. Throughouth the month of December, other events such as a Christmas parade, lighting of the commmunity Christmas tree, and more compliment the Twice As Bright Festival.
Jefferson's Holiday Trail of Lights is actually one leg of a larger Holiday Trail of Lights that includes Natchitoches, Shreveport-Bossier City, Louisiana and Marshall, Jefferson, and Kilgore, Texas. These cities all lie within a short drive of each other on Interstates 20 & 49. In addition to season-long light displays, each city stages a variety of parades and holiday events during the month of December.