McAlester, Oklahoma is Your Destination for Great Festivals

Visit McAlester for Comic Con & Other Festivals

McAlester, Oklahoma is set to host Comic Con on October 22nd and 23rd. Held at the Southeast Expo Center, Comic Con will attract comic lovers from across the midwest and southeastern United States. “We expect a big crowd as people come to meet the actors who have given voice to popular shows, movies and anime,” said Billy Sumner, Tourism Manager for the City of McAlester. “Plus, Comic Con is a ton of fun with activities, collectables for sale, and costume competitions.”

Comic Con isn’t the only event coming to McAlester this fall. “We’ve had a lot of really unique and new events come to McAlester recently, which has paired nicely with our already established festivals and events. Even on a regular weekday, our locally owned restaurants and shops are fun to visit, and you can find live music downtown, most weekends. With so many new events happening, it’s easy to make a weekend trip to McAlester and experience it all,” said Sumner.

8 Upcoming “Must-See” Events in McAlester

Head to McAlester, Oklahoma for a good time this fall. Here are just a few of the events you should add to your calendar. For help planning your trip, click here

#1 - Simply Country Music Festival
September 30 - October 2, 2022 at Simply Country Ranch (7838 Krebs Lake Road, McAlester, OK).

Simply Country Ranch

Simply Country Ranch has won awards for agritourism. If you’re in the mood to kick off fall with a trip to the farm, attending their Simply Country Music Festival is the best way to do it. See musical performances by Jim Calhoun, Landon Walker, Justin Adams, Country Junction, Kinlock, Derek Jones and others. In addition to live music, they have a zip line, pumpkin launching, a mechanical bull, train and jumbo slide - events perfect for the entire family. Farm animals, a pumpkin patch, pie eating contest, a saloon and great food round out the event.  Grab your tickets HERE... then book your trip today for the best music festival of the fall!

#2 - McAlester Comic Con
October 22 - 23, 2022 at the Southeast Expo Center in McAlester. 

Comic Con2

Come to McAlester Comic Con for events, costume competitions, to meet actors, buy comic books and collectables, spend time with other fans or show off your best cosplay! With over 60 vendors attending Comic Con so there will be something for everyone. Ardmore-based World Class Revolution in partnership with McAlester’s own New Class Wrestling Organization (NCWO) will hold a wrestling event immediately after the comic con, at 4pm on that Sunday. For a full list of events, celebrities and more, follow McAlester Comic Con on Facebook or visit for tickets and more. 

Unfortunately, the McAlester Comic Con was cancelled. The following annoucement was made by the organizers through their Facebook page:

"It is with deep regret that we will be forced to cancel the show. One thing I will not do is deliver a sub-par event, and as we reach closer to the show date it has become apparent that I cannot deliver the caliber of show McAlester deserves. All refunds on tickets will be processed today, so you should receive your refund by Monday. We will reschedule for next summer in order to give ourselves time to build a show that McAlester deserves."

#3 - Grillmarks Ribtoberfest Competition 
November 5, 2022 near Spaceship Earth Coffee located at 345 E. Choctaw Avenue in Downtown McAlester.


McAlester’s Grillmarks Ribtoberfest Competition is a destination food event that draws people from throughout Oklahoma and Texas. Competition is fierce as 30 grillmasters fight to see who will take home the $2,000 grand prize. For foodies - Ribtoberfest is straight heaven. If you like ribs that are perfectly seasoned and charred, if you like your meat tender and juicy, if just thinking about ribs is making your mouth water - it’s time to plan your trip to McAlester. Oh… and there’s a best bite, slider competition too, sponsored by Simply Country Ranch, just in case ribs weren’t enough to get you here! With over $4,000 in prize money, free samples, live music, fun, games, beer and football on the big screen, McAlester’s the place to be Nov. 5th, for Grillmark’s Ribtoberfest!

#4 - Sam Wampler Freedom Ford, Hi-Lo Pro Rodeo
presented by Big V Feeds

March, 2023 (date TBD) at the Southeast Expo Center.


McAlester is no stranger to rodeos, playing host to the Prison Rodeo for nearly 70 years. Although the Prison Rodeo remains a distant memory for now, a new generation of cowboys and cowgirls are still finding success in McAlester. For the past 6 years, the Hi-Lo Pro Rodeo has offered endless entertainment. You can expect non-stop action with some of the best professional rodeo performers in McAlester for the Sam Wampler’s Freedom Ford PRCA Hi Lo Pro Rodeo, presented by Big V Feeds. This two-day event draws hundreds of contestants for bull riding, barrel racing, steer wrestling and much more. Book your trip today so you don’t miss it!

#5 - Kulture Kings Tattoo Convention
April 14 - 16th, 2023 at the Southeast Expo Center

Kulture Kings

Mark your calendar now for the 2nd Annual, Kulture Kings Tattoo Convention. Last year, more than 35 talented and successful tattoo artists converged on McAlester to test their skills, bring a new and unique convention to the McAlester area and throw one amazing VIP afterparty! This year, Kulture Kings is back and they’re looking to make things bigger and better. More activities, more artists (room for 50+) and more entertainment. Fun for all ages. You won’t want to miss this event, as it returns to the Southeast Expo Center. Follow Kulture Kings Tattoo Convention on Facebook and Instagram for updates and details as they’re released, or visit Artists book up fast, so be the first to know and book your tattoos ahead of time to guarantee your spot.  

#6 - McAlester Armed Forces Day Parade 
First Saturday in May (every year) in downtown McAlester. 

Did you know that the third Saturday of May is National Armed Forces Day? It’s something we don’t forget in McAlester. To thank the men and women of our Armed Forces, we have hosted a parade for the past 75 years on the first Saturday in May! Why early? Some say we’re just really excited. But really, it’s a great way to show our love and support for active duty, retired and veteran service members. You can really see the community come together and the pride everyone feels to have served and to support those who have. 

#7 - The McAlester Italian Festival
May 12th & 13th, 2023 at the Southeast Expo Center.


For over 50 years, people have traveled to McAlester for some of the best Italian food you’ll ever eat outside of Italy. During the Italian Festival, thousands of people descend upon the Southeast Expo Center for two days of food, wine, live entertainment, crafts, art, carnival rides and vendors. And of course, there’s the spaghetti eating contest for the bravest among us! May might seem far off, but it will be here faster than you realize. Book your hotel today so you won’t forget to come to McAlester for the best food weekend of your life! 

#8- Dancing Rabbit Music Festival
May 13th, June 17th & July 15th, 2023 - 3 FREE Performances 


McAlester is an awesome place to listen to live music year round. But, for a couple of days each summer, McAlester really comes alive. The Dancing Rabbit Music Festival is completely free - yes, FREE! People come from throughout the country to hear incredible bands perform live on outdoor stages several times during the summer. Artists such as Charlie Parr, John Fullbright, Band of Heathens, John Moreland, Flobots, Stroke 9, Josie Dunne, Shawn James, Quaker City Night Hawks and more, have graced the stage of this award-winning festival. The Dancing Rabbit Music Festival has gotten so popular that the organization has started bringing bands to McAlester throughout the year as well. Click here for the full lineup and here to plan your trip. 

McAlester, Oklahoma is Your Destination for the Best Festivals 

Have we convinced you yet? If not, plan your trip to The McAlester Comic Con, Ribtoberfest, The McAlester Italian Festival, The Dancing Rabbit Music Festival or one of our other incredible events and experience McAlester for yourself. You’ll make some good memories and have a weekend to remember. If you need help planning your trip, reach out. We would be happy to assist you. While here, don’t forget to check out our two historic downtown areas. Grab some food at one of our many local favorites and then browse our eclectic shops, boutiques and antique stores for the perfect souvenir, hidden treasure or more! Come see us.