First of all, I have to say that these are by no means all the events that take place in Jefferson, Texas. It seems like every few weeks something is going on in town. These are simply the ones that have a legacy - they've been taking place for a number of years. My advice is that any time you're thinking of coming to Jefferson for a visit, call your preferred lodging several weeks in advance, because during these events, rooms sell out quickly - even a year in advance! That said, we'd love to have you come to Jefferson to celebrate any of these events; they're listed here in relatively chronological order...

Quilts on the Bayou

The Jefferson Quilt Show is becoming one of the largest in East Texas, and attracts over a thousand visitor every year. The show is spectacular, with over a hundred quilts on display. In addition, there are vendor booths, lectures, and seminars for everyone to enjoy. Click on this link to see photos from Quilts on the Bayou. For current info on the upcoming quilt show, click here to visit

Pulpwood Queens Girlfriend Weekend

The Pulpwood Queens may be the world's largest book club, and it was all started right here in Jefferson by Kathy Murphy over twenty years ago. Every year the queens gather in Jefferson from around the country (and even the globe) to celebrate literacy and their queendom. There are parties, celebrations, costumes, and just general fun. National authors come to speak to the queens, and it is a weekend that is long remembered and cherished by the attendees. For some fun photos of one Girlfriends Weekend, just click on this link, but for actual information about the next event visit their official website.

Mardi Gras Upriver

Mardi Gras is one of the most festive seasons in Jefferson. The tradition started many years ago, when steamships came up Big Cypress Bayou from New Orleans, bringing with them the celebrations of the City of the Crescent Moon. Mardi Gras celebrations were popular a hundred years ago, and they are carried on today! Click on this link to see the Mardi Gras Upriver celebration.

History, Haunts & Legends
Paranormal Conference

The History, Haunts & Legends Paranormal Conference is held twice a year - in the Spring and in the Fall. It's a wonderful time - there is a slate of speakers on various paranormal topics throughout the day, a vendor room that you will love browsing, all culminating in a nighttime investigation at several notably haunted locations around Jefferson. You can get current information on the event's Facebook page by clicking here.

Jefferson's Historical Pilgrimage Tour of Homes

The first weekend in May every year the Jessie Allen Wise Garden Club puts on the annual Pilgrimage Tour of Homes. Each year four of the city's historic properties are opened for weekend tours, guided by docents in period costume. It is a chance to get a rare peek inside some of the city's most elegant and historic homes, and see furnishings dating back to the 1800s. Get information on upcoming Pilgrimage weekends by clicking on this link.

Diamond Bessie Murder Trial Play

Another part of Jefferson's annual Pilgrimage is the Diamond Bessie Murder Trial Play. Back in 1877, a well-dressed couple arrived in Jefferson. They were seen all around town for the next two days flashing their expensive clothing and jewelry and acting like a happily married couple that didn't have a care in the world. The woman was introduced only as "Bessie." The husband departed alone unexpectedly, and two weeks later the wife's body was found in the woods south of Jefferson. This set into motion a series of events that would become the trial of the century, which is re-enacted in a play every year, and has been since 1955. Read all about it - and get ticket information - by clicking here.

The Battle for Port Jefferson

Also associated with the Jefferson Pilgrimage is a Civil War re-enactment of the "Battle that Never Was." During the Red River Campaign, Union troops were coming up the Red River to burn Shreveport, Jefferson, and to seize the munition-works at Marshall. They were repelled by Confederate forces at Mansfield, Louisiana, but had the tide turned that day this is the battle that would have taken place in Jefferson, Texas. The re-enactment features a full battlefield conflict, street skirmishes downtown, and the soldiers from "both sides" participate in the Pilgrimage parade. Click on this link to see photos from the re-enactment.

July 4th - Jefferson Salutes America

For the most patriotic, enjoyable, family-fun fourth of July, spend the holiday in Jefferson! There are contests and games for the kids, a cake auction where the bidding gets fast and furious, an orchestra in the gazebo playing American themes, and a fireworks display that will take your breath away. Oh, and of course, there are hot dogs, snow cones, soda pops and many other goodies to make your mouth water. You've never seen a July 4th celebration and a slice of Americana like this! Want to see some photos from the celebration? Click on this link.

A Taste of Jefferson

Grab your plate, loosen your belt a notch or two, and get ready for a festival of food like you've never seen before! The third Sunday in October is a date that you'll want to mark on your calendar. Restaurants from all around Jefferson bring their finest wares for the public. Click on this link to see photos from the Taste of Jefferson.

Port of Jefferson Rod Run & Car Show

For all you car enthusiasts, the Rod Run and Car Show every Spring is worth attending. The cars are packed with power, and fully detailed. You can easily spend the day taking in all the cars and talking to their owners. Click here to see some photos.

Jefferson Museum Civil War Symposium

Every year the Jefferson Historical Museum hosts the Jefferson Civil War Symposium. It is not only a fundraiser for the museum, but an academic exploration of all aspects of the Trans-Mississippi Department of the Civil War. Four expert speakers give their presentations over the course of a Saturday, and it also includes a delicious lunch, displays of historic artifacts on exhibit, and a vendor room that attendees love to explore. Information about the upcoming symposium can be found on the Jefferson museum's website.

Jefferson Burn Benefit Motorcycle Rally

Started by Charles "Boo" Chaler in 1998, this motorcycle rally has seen tens of thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts ride to benefit children burn victims each fall. Funds help young burn survivors attend Camp "I'm Still Me" in Scottsville through the Percy R. Johnson Burn Foundation in Shreveport, and Shriner's Burns Hospital for Children in Galveston. It's a full weekend of celebration of bikes and bikers, music, and entertainment. Click on this link to get current information.

Texas Bigfoot Conference

There have been bigfoot sightings in the woods of Marion County and around Caddo Lake since 1924, and as recent as 2005 - and those are just the ones that have been reported. There have even been several bigfoot-themed movies filmed in the area: Something in the Woods (2015), Boggy Creek (2010), Skookum: The Hunt for Bigfoot (2016), and Southern Fried Bigfoot (2007), Jefferson is therefore a very appropriate place to have the annual Texas Bigfoot Conference, which happens every October. Check the Facebook page of the Texas Bigfoot Research Center for more info by clicking on this link.

Candlelight Tour of Homes

The first two weekends in December, the Historic Jefferson Foundation offers a tour of homes by candlelight. Four homes are selected, elegantly and elaborately decorated for Christmas, and put on tour. Docents in period attire guide you through each home, and all of the greenery and Christmas trees are real. You will hear the history of each home, and view period antiques and family heirlooms all decked in the beauty and majesty of the Christmas season. Click on this link for more information, tour dates, and even a video.

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