12 things to do during Labor Day weekend in Atlanta

As usual, there are cosplayers, football, and books. But if those aren’t your fancy, consider watching a green ogre sing or chowing down on bagels.
Chick-fil-A Kickoff
UGA plays UNC during the Chick-fil-A Kickoff this weekend

Photograph by Rob Foldy/Getty Images

Dragon Con
September 2-5, downtown
Atlanta’s annual celebration of all things geeky takes over downtown Atlanta for the 30th year. If you want to avoid some of the worst crowds, the popular Saturday morning parade will be televised for the first time (on the CW at 10 a.m.). Notable guests include Gillian Anderson (X-Files), Adam Baldwin (Firefly), William Shatner (Star Trek), and Charlie Cox (Daredevil).

Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game
September 3, Georgia Dome
The Georgia Bulldogs take on the North Carolina Tar Heels in the annual battle for the Old Leather Helmet. This year’s game is officially sold out, but if you’re a fan of either team, you’ll surely find fellow diehards downtown before and after the game.

AJC Decatur Book Festival
September 2-4, Decatur
Joshilyn Jackson, Jacqueline Woodson, Dav Pilkey, and Kevin Young are among this year’s 300 authors. The festival also features a tribute to the late Pat Conroy and pop-up performances from Serenbe Playhouse.

Shrek the Musical
September 1-4, Atlanta Lyric Theatre
It’s the last weekend to catch this musical comedy, based on the 2001 hit film starring Mike Myers and Eddie Murphy.

Atlanta Black Pride
September 1-5, various locations
The 20th annual event features a variety of parties and performances—see Remy Ma and Trina on Saturday and Monica on Sunday.

House in the Park
September 4, Grant Park
Dance all day to the beats of DJs Ramon Rawsoul, Kai Alice, DJ Kemit, and Salah Ananse.

Sky High Hot Air Balloon Festival
September 2-4, Callaway Gardens
Take a ride in a hot air balloon or simply watch them float along during this 18th annual festival. There’s also a 5K run and triathlon, live music, disc dogs, a classic car show, and more.

Art in the Park
September 3-5, Marietta Square
Dragon Con isn’t the only event celebrating a 30th anniversary this year—this Marietta tradition features 175 artists, chalk art, a children’s area, live music, and food trucks.

Atlanta Caribbean Jerk Festival
September 4, Georgia International Horse Park, Conyers
The 11th annual event moves this year to Conyers and features a cook-off, live reggae and jazz, a kid’s zone, and of course, plenty of Caribbean food.

Atlanta Dream
September 4, Philips Arena
Watch the Dream take on the Seattle Storm during Pride Night at Philips Arena.

September 4-5, Temple Kol Emeth, East Cobb
The 6th annual event celebrates Jewish food and culture and includes a bagel eating contest, arts vendors, cooking demonstrations, live music, and more.

Labor Day at Stone Mountain Park
September 3-5, Stone Mountain
Climb the SkyHike, ride the cable car, and splash at the Geyser Tower, then stick around for the park’s famous fireworks show, updated with brand-new fire cannon effects.