A celebration of horses and the fall season takes place from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 8-9 at the DuPage County Forest Preserve District Fall Festival in Danada at Danada Equestrian Center, 3S507 Naperville Road in Wheaton.

During the free two-day event, the main outdoor arena will feature riding tricks, jumping, carriage driving, a drill team and equine therapy demonstrations. Performers include the Midwest Renegades, Chicago Vaulting and the Stateline Hotshots rodeo drill team, according to a press release.

Breaks from the equestrian program will include live music from local bluegrass artist Ashley Lewis on Saturday and dulcimer player Sherri Farley on Sunday. The full entertainment program is on dupageforest.org/autumn-festival.

Visitors can meet Danada’s Nick the Painting Horse and purchase his artwork in the gift shop, tour the barn that once housed Kentucky Derby winner Lucky Debonair, and learn about care, grooming and equipment horses. Visitors can also take horse-drawn wagon rides through the fall woods, watch artistic pumpkin carving demonstrations, and meet representatives from DuPage Animal Services, who will be on-site with adoptable animals and the clinic. organization’s mobile veterinarian.

Kids can go on pony rides, decorate paper horses, explore an interactive nature exhibit, and participate in activities offered by the DuPage Children’s Museum and the Wheaton Park District’s Sensory Garden Playground. From noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, kids can meet and have their picture taken with PBS Kids’ “Nature Cat.”

“We look forward to welcoming thousands of visitors back to our annual celebration of the horse,” Center Director Wayne Zaininger said in the statement. “We are thrilled to offer two full days of horse shows and fall activities for the first time. The Danada Fall Festival is one of the only free horse shows of its kind in DuPage County.

Visitors are invited to stop by Danada House, the former home of Dan and Ada Rice, for the Friends of Danada Nature Photo and Art Exhibit, a juried competition featuring artists local.

Food and beverages will be available for purchase from local food truck vendors including MotoChef (Lord of the FryZ), BoJo’s Concessions and Catering, and Windy City Ice Cream.

The fall festival in Danada takes place rain or shine. Admission and parking are free, but some activities are chargeable (cash and check only).

For more information, call 630-933-7200 or visit dupageforest.org.