Why We Celebrate Labor Day

Labor Day 2019: Where to go and what to do outside metro Atlanta

Three beaches and three cities where spending a three-day weekend would be a treat

If you’re looking for one last getaway before the weather cools off, Labor Day weekend is the time to go.

You won’t have to go far, however, to have a good time. Not too far outside Atlanta are three beaches and three cities that would be a great way to spend your upcoming three day weekend.


Edisto Island: You can watch wildlife, ride your bike, enjoy a boat tour or play golf at the Plantation Course at Edisto.  Each Labor Day weekend brings the Edisto Beach Shag Festival, which draws thousands to Bay Creek Park. Check out the arts and crafts vendors, and dance to music from the top shag bands in the country.

Gulf Shores: About 5½ hours west of Atlanta, Gulf Shores and Orange Beach combine for 32 miles of white sandy shoreline in Foley, Alabama. Friday-Monday, you can make a T-shirt, listen to live music and enjoy fireworks, among other activities.

Tybee Island: A quick 4½ drive from Atlanta, this small and friendly barrier island off the coast of Savannah combines history with beach fun. On Sunday, September 1, the band Swingin’ Medallions will perform during the annual Labor Day Beach Bash.

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Tybee Island is near Savannah, a perfect way to spend a three-day weekend. 


Asheville: Drive 3½ hours northeast and explore Asheville’s arts scene. August 31 and September first you can attend the second annual Downtown Asheville Labor Day Weekend Festival of the Arts, featuring painters, potters, jewelers, glass blowers and more.

Chattanooga: Not even two hours north of Atlanta, there is lots to do in Chattanooga. You can drive up to Lookout Mountain, visit Rock City and Ruby Falls, or ride the Incline Railway. Or hang out near the river in Coolidge Park. On Sunday, September 1, head to the First Tennessee Pavilion for the Beast Feast BBQ Festival.

The Tennessee Aquarium is a must see in Chattanooga.
Photo: David Andrews / Special

Columbus: OK, technically Callaway is 30 minutes north of Columbus. But if you missed the hot air balloons at Piedmont Park recently, you’ll want to head to Pine Mountain for the Hot Air Balloon Festival over Labor Day weekend. In addition to tethered balloon rides, you can listen to live music, see a classic car show and enjoy the kids zone. 

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