Whether you're visiting the Columbia area for USC Parent's Weekend, ESPN College GameDay or one of our top-rated famously hot attractions, this weekend is full of events that cater to nearly every type of visitor. Find your fit in our 8 categories of things to do listed below and don't forget to check out our calendar of events for even more information on everything happening in "The New Southern Hot Spot!"
calling all sports enthusiasts
The traveling road show, ESPN College Gameday, will air nationally on USC's stunning Horseshoe Saturday morning for its seventh time on campus. Join the excitement and cheer on the Gamecocks against the Missouri Tigers. Then, all women with a passion for the outdoors should head over to Mast General Store to spiff up your backpacking expertise.
USC Gamecocks Football vs. Missouri at Williams-Brice Stadium Saturday 7 p.m.
Backpacker Magazine's Get Out More Women's Tour at Mast General Store Friday 6 p.m.; free admission
calling all thrill seekers
Marvel fans - come on out to a mind-blowing arena extravaganza with cutting-edge special effects, pyrotechnics, aerial stunts and all your favorite superheroes and villains. Then, test your bravery at the Midland's premiere haunted house and maze. Warning: This intense attraction isn't for the faint of heart!
Marvel Universe Live! at Colonial Life Arena Thursday - Friday 7 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m., 3 p.m. & 7 p.m., Sunday 1 p.m. & 5 p.m.; $102, $52, $42
Deceased Farm's Madness Murder & Maize at Clinton Sease Farm and Corn Maze Thursday - Saturday 7:30 p.m. tickets, tours begin when dark; $13 - $35
calling all kids & kids at heart
Explore the magical world of two popular children's plays put on by local actors. Afterwards, get lost in an 8-acre corn maze filled with clues, pictures and games. If you can find your way out, catch a bouncy hayride and treat yourself to a few autumn treats.
2014 Corn Maze - Down on the Farm at Clinton Sease Farm and Corn Maze Friday 6 p.m. - 11 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. - 11 p.m., Sunday 2 p.m. - 7 p.m.; $10, 2 & under free admission
"Puss in Boots" at Columbia Marionette Theatre Saturday 11 a.m. & 3 p.m.; $5.75
Columbia Children's Theatre presents "How I Became a Pirate" at Columbia Children's Theater Friday 7 p.m., Saturday 10:30 a.m., 2 p.m. & 7 p.m., Sunday 3 p.m.; $10
calling all nature aficionados
Don't miss the wildest event in town! Savor some tasty cuisine while taking an evening stroll among the creatures of the zoo. Then, improve your green thumb with a festival featuring yard decor, outdoor furniture, specialty food and master gardeners to answer all of your burning questions.
Midlands Fall Plant and Flower Festival at South Carolina State Farmer's Market Thursday - Saturday 6 a.m. - 9 p.m., Sunday 12 p.m.- 6 p.m.; free admission
Riverbanks ZOOfari at Riverbanks Zoo & Garden Friday 7 p.m.; $50 Riverbanks members, $60 general public, $70 day of event
Scarecrows in the Garden Contest at Robert Mills House & Gardens Thursday - Saturday; Businesses: $20 | Families & classes: $10
calling all music supporters
Join the nation's original celebration of okra, one of SC's signature southern vegetables, with a parade and music by Mother's Finest. IF you prefer to tap your toes to other beats, come on out to a bluegrass festival, an innovative classical series or some chamber music for a good cause.
Irmo Okra Strut Festival at Irmo Community Park Friday 6 p.m. - 11 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
8th Annual All Day Haynes Bluegrass Festival at Leesville Park Saturday 4 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.; free admission
Southern Exposure New Music: Brooklyn Rider at USC School of Music Friday 7:30 p.m.; free admission
USC Conelia Freeman Concert at USC School of Music Sunday 3 p.m.; $12 adults, $10 seniors citizens & USC faculty and staff, $5 students
calling all food followers
Imagine the heavenly smell of salty boiled peanuts, homemade beeswax candles and sweet Diggity Donuts wafting through the air. Our local farmers markets create this delicious atmosphere every week for anyone in the Columbia area who appreciates all of the yummy things in life.
Soda City Market at 1500 Block of Main Street Saturday 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.; free admission
Town of Lexington's Farmers Market at Lexington Square Park Saturday 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.; free admission
Vista Marketplace at Whaley Farmer's and Craft Market at 701 Whaley Saturday 9 a.m. - 1 p.m.; free admission
calling all art admirers
Psst, we have a useful tip for all of the artistic souls out there. Admission to the Columbia Museum of Art is free this weekend, so take this chance to see all of its remarkable displays. Are the theatrical arts more your thing? Catch the last weekend of Trustus' hilarious modern comedy.
Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike at Trustus Theatre Thursday 7:30 p.m., Friday - Saturday 8 p.m.; $15 - $22
Operatic Threads at Vista Studio/Gallery 80808 Thursday - Friday 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.; Saturday - Sunday 1 - 4 p.m.; free admission
Tabletop Art History: Still Life from the Collection at Columbia Museum of Art Thursday and Friday 11 a.m. - 5 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sunday 12 - 5 p.m.; $12
calling all history buffs
Generations of Native American culture, breath-taking antiques and life-sized, ferocious dinosaurs can all be found here if you know where to look! Find out how exciting history can be at all of Columbia's rotating exhibits.
Traditions, Change, and Celebration: Native Artists of the Southeast at McKissick Museum Thursday and Friday 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.; Free admission
From Landrum to Leeds: Common Ceramics in 19th Century Columbia & Prideful Possessions: A South Carolina Silver Sampler at Robert Mills House & Gardens Thursday - Sunday 12 - 4 p.m.; $4 - $8
Variety of on-going exhibits at South Carolina State Museum Thursday - Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., Sunday 1 - 5 p.m.; $5 - $7
- Chapman's Charleston, 1863 - 1864
- Dinosaurs: A Bite Out of Time
- South Carolina Unearthed
- The Art and Life of Addie Sims: A Look Into Her World
- Building a Universe
For more things to do in Columbia, SC browse our calendar of events and listings of attractions, outdoor things to do, restaurants and more. Book your hotel room and attractions tickets at columbiacvb.com/hotels/.