Whether you're gearing up for the festive season with your first batches of Christmas Shopping, seeking a Halloween thrill, or revving up to sing 'ein prosit' at a beer festival, October is jam-packed with all sorts of exciting events.Here are our top picks, but check out our events page for more.Outdoor and sportGolden Gate Half MarathonWhen: Saturday, 6 October 2012Where: Glen Reenen campsite Entry fee: 21.1km: R60; 10km: R40; 4km Fun Run: R20; Temporary License; 21.1km & 10km: R20Situated just outside Clarens is the beautiful Golden Gate National Park; home to beautiful rock formations and even more beautiful sunsets! If you fancy booking a weekend away and taking part in a half marathon at the same time then entering the Golden Gate Half Marathon might be the one for you.For more information call 082 822-8992.Grahamstown Flower FestivalWhen: Saturday, 6 and Sunday, 7 October 2012Where: Makana Botanical Gardens, GrahamstownEntry fee: R20 - Adults, R10 - Students, R10 - ScholarsThe Grahamstown Flower Festival takes place in the second oldest botanical gardens in the country, which have been successfully redeveloped and upgraded over the past three years.The Makana Botanical Gardens are located below the 1820 Settlers' Monument, home of the National Arts Festival.The gardens will be taken over in their entirety by the Festival organisers for the weekend of the event - from 2pm on Friday 5th to 4pm on Sunday 7th October. Access to the festival grounds will be via the Lucas Avenue gate situated above Rhodes University's Eden Grove building.For more details visit the Grahamstown Flower Festival website.Bloemfontein Rose FestivalWhen: Monday, 22 and Tuesday, 23 October 2012Where: Loch Logan Waterfront, BloemfonteinSince its inception in 1976, the Bloemfontein Rose Festival attracts thousands of visitors and rose lovers from across South Africa and the world to experience and participate in this spectacle of roses and assortment of events taking place throughout the city.For more information, contact Merryl Henning on 082 416 7837Good Health and Wellness ExpoWhen: Saturday 27th OctoberWhere: Protea Hotel EdwardEntry fee: R25 at the doorGood Health and Wellness ExpoYou can join other health fanatics on the day filled with advice and inspiration at Protea Edward Hotel.This event promises to get you healthier with a brand new lifestyle component as part of the show.Expect to interact with health practitioners, lifestyle coaches, image consultants, fitness instructors, health industry bodies.Music and artClover AardklopWhen: Tuesday, 2 October - Sunday, 7 October 2012Where: PotchefstroomEntry fee: Depends on different showsThe Aardklop National Arts Festival in Potchefstroom this year offers an outstanding programme with more than 70 productions, including an opera and dance and brand-new drama productions by award-winning writers. Popular productions from other festivals can also be seen at Aardklop, such as the site-specific Betésda that won numerous awards at the KKNK.Check out the Aardklop website for more details.Shnit! Film festivalWhen: Wednesday, 3 October 2012 to Sunday, 7 October 2012Where: Labia Theatre, Cape Town and Pulp Cinema, StellenboschDim the lights, grab your popcorn and sit back and relax because the shnit! International Short Film Festival hits Cape Town this month.Come and be a part of one of the fastest growing festivals in Europe. Short Film is a fantastic medium and with over 3500 entries from 109 countries you can be sure you will some spectacular stuff.You will see some cutting edge and off the wall work, as well as the best South African short film makers have to offer. There are also late night panel discussions to take part in as well as a part at the Grand Daddy Hotel.Check out the shnit! website for more detailsRocking the DaisiesWhen: Thursday, 4 October - Sunday, 7 October 2012Where: Cloof Wine Estate, DarlingBeing South Africa's premier eco-friendly music and lifestyle festival, Rocking the Daisies raises the bar every year, incorporating innovative environmentally conscious products into the festival and spreading the message of ‘play hard, tread lightly'. Rocking the Daisies has made it its mission not only to educate others on greener lifestyles but also how to take it home and incorporate it into their own lives.From transport initiatives, solar and wind powered electricity, bio-diesel generators and LED lighting to complimentary bio-degradable soaps and shampoos, recycling and tree planting initiatives. Rocking the Daisies explores every avenue to make this the most carbon neutral green event possible.Ticket pricesThursday - Sunday R520 at outlets and online R600 at the gateFriday - Sunday R520 at outlets and online R600 at the gateSaturday - Sunday R480 at outlets and online R550 at the gateVisit the RTD website for more detailsPoetry Africa FestivalWhen: Monday, 15 - Saturday, 20 October 2012Where: Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre, DurbanThe popularity of the spoken word is evident in the powerful performance arc that threads through the 16th edition of Poetry Africa. Music is also a prominent presence in this landmark festival organised by the Centre for Creative Arts (University of KwaZulu-Natal) and made possible through principal funding from the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund. Poetry Africa runs in Durban from 15 to 19 October at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre, with the festival finale at BAT Centre on 20 October. Satellite events take place in Malawi, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Cape Town before culminating at the main event in Durban.Visit the University of KwaZulu-Natal website for more details.Photo & Film expoWhen: Thursday, 18 - Sunday, 21 October 2012Where: Coca-Cola Dome, NorthgateCost: R200 for a full weekend pass, R80 for a day pass, R40 per day for under 16s and pensionersThis year's expo boasts more exhibitors than ever before, showcasing (and selling) photographic and film related products and the best possible show specials. It's the ideal opportunity to upgrade your gear and get those accessories you ‘need'. It's also the only platform available to really compare a full product range and all the brands hands on.If you need more info about the event then mail email@example.com or call Matt/Chanti on 011-7821219.Check out the Photo & Film Expo website.Bosman WeekendWhen: Friday, 19 - Sunday, 21 October 2012Where: Groot MaricoCost: The cost of a weekend package ( all 4 packages included ) is R650 per person.Now in its 19th year, Groot Marico's Bosman Weekend promises to be as magical as always this year. This year the programme for the annual Bosman Weekend will be featuring an interesting variety of performances, lectures, workshops , art exhibitions and music. There will also be time to share at a leisurely pace, the company, the ambience of bush and fireplace - and excellent performances by well known artists included in the weekend package.For more information, visit the Bosman Weekend website or contact Santa on firstname.lastname@example.orgOriental Dance festivalWhen: Thursday, 25 - Sunday, 28th October 2012Where: V&A Waterfront, Cape TownCost: R150Times: 10am - 6pmThis is a charity event in aid of the Saartjie Baartman Centre for (abused) Women and Children in Athlone, Cape Town with performers coming from Germany, Israel, Iraq, Spain, Indonesia, Argentina, Belgium and from all over South Africa.There is also a Bazaar where you can buy dancing accessories, jewellers, costumes, food and many more presented by small businesses from South Africa.Contact: 021 701-2993Wining, dining, beer and whiskyWhisky Live, Cape TownWhen: Wednesday, 3 October 2012 to Friday, 5 October 2012Where: CTICC Cape TownTimes: Daily from 18h00 to 22h00Whisky Live is the international celebration of whisky, bringing all the whiskies of the world together under one roof. Whisky Live prides itself on bringing together the finest whiskies, great food and a range of education and entertainment to make learning about whisky both fun and stimulating.Check out the Whisky Live website for more details and visit Webtickets to find out more about ticket options.Waterblommetjie festivalWhen: Saturday, 6 OctoberWhere: Windmeul Cellar and Rhebokskloof Estate in Agter - Paarl Times: 08:00 - 15:00South Africa's distinctive vegetable will again be celebrated on 6 October, at the fourth annual Waterblommetjie Festival which is presented jointly in Agter-Paarl by Windmeul Cellar and Rhebokskloof Estate. This is a unique opportunity for food and wine lovers because it is the only waterblommetjie culinary festival of its kind in the country. Waterblommetjies dishes predate the arrival of the first Europeans in 1652.Live music, entertainment for children, horse rides, quad bike and a hiking trail all form part of the festival.For more information, contact email@example.com or tel 021 869 8100 (Windmeul), or alternatively firstname.lastname@example.org, or tel 021 869 8386 (Rhebokskloof).Sandton BierfestWhen: Thursday, 11 - Sunday, 14 OctoberWhere: Montecasino, FourwaysEntry fee: Tickets cost R85 per person and you would also need to make sure you exchange yourRands for Crowns, the official currency of Bierfest. A pack of crowns will cost you R100.If you can't quite afford a trip to Munich for the famous Oktoberfest, the good news is, something equally awesome will be happening at Montecasino in Fourways, Sandton this year.Closely resembling the Oktoberfest in Munich, The Bierfest in Sandton promises to be an authentic Bavarian festival complete with limited edition beers brewed exclusively for the event, German food and even Oompah bands!Visit the Bierfest website for more details or like them on Facebook.Gay and Lesbian Film Festival - Out in AfricaWhen: Friday, 19 to Sunday, 28 October 2012Where: Nu Metro V&A Waterfront, Cape Town and Nu Metro Hyde Park, JohannesburgEntry fee: Tickets cost R50The 3rd and final edition of this festival for 2012! Expect a line up of films from SA, Brazil, Morocco/UAE, UK, USA and Kenya and 9 Features from USA, France, Canada, Belgium and Spain. According to the OIA website OIA’s future is uncertain, check out the Out in Africa website to see how you can contribute.RMB WineX, JohannesburgWhen: Wednesday, 24th to Friday, 26th October 2012Where: Pavilion level of the Sandton Convention CentreTimes: 5pm - 9pm dailyEntry fee: R200RMB WineX, the undisputed festival of choice for the discerning wine consumer, takes over the Pavilion level of the Sandton Convention Centre from Wednesday 24th to Friday 26th October in a celebration of all that is good to savour and experience in the world of wine. Now in its 13th successive year, the three night show boasts the greatest selection of South Africa's top cellars under one roof together with an exciting array of newcomers, boutique producers, garagistes - all passionate about what they make and why it is different.Visit the WineX website for further detailsOktoberfest, PE When: Thursday 25 - Sunday, 28 October 2012Where: German Club in Lorraine Entry fee: R70.00 per person. Tickets will be available from 1 October at the German Club.Ein prosit der Gemütlichkeit! Get into the "partylaune" and experience a traditional Oktoberfest!Bring your lederhosen and dancing shoes and enjoy traditional music all the way from Germany in the form of Viva Bavaria. Taste unique German cuisine, along with food specialities from Austria and South Africa...and of course there will be plenty of Carling Black Label, Castle Light, Hansa Pilsener and South Africa's favourite beer, Castle Lager, ‘on tap'.Check out the German Club website for more details.InspirationKamers vol GeskenkeWhen: Sunday, 21 - Saturday, 27 October 2012Where: Lourensford Estate, Somerset WestTimes: Sunday 16:00 - 20:00, Friday 8:30 to 20:00 and daily 8:30 to 17:00Entry fee: R50This year KAMERS celebrates a decade of women, their stories, dreams and growth through creativity, by providing a visual and creative feast of exceptional handmade & crafted products.A selection of the best originally designed wares, from jewellery to gourmet food products, ceramics, soft furnishings, décor accessories, garden gear, designer clothing and accessories will be available from our niche suppliers.Visit the Kamers website for more details.Baba IndabaWhen: Saturday, 26 October 2012 - Sunday, 28 October 2012Where: Sandton Convention CenterEntry fee: R60 for adults, R20 for kids, under 6 years get in free. Online tickets are R45.South Africa's premier baby show is heading to Johannesburg in October.New parents, parents-to-be, grandparents and kids are invited to experience the wide range of baby-related products including everything from prams to feeding bottles, vitamin supplements and vaccinations; from car safety seats to toddler music and nursery furniture; from nutritional and medical products to pool safety and video cameras.For more information, visit the Baba Indaba website.Franschhoek Christmas MarketWhen: Wednesday, 26 October - Thursday, 4 November 2012Where: Town Hall, Huguenot Rd, Franschhoek Time: Daily 9am-6pm. Sundays 10am-4pmSpend a day in Franschhoek and enjoy the 8th Annual Franschhoek Christmas Market - from a handbag for mom and garden furniture for Barbie to chocolates for dad's sweet tooth and you might just find a treat for Fido as well.Contact: Amelia 072 254 7722 / email@example.comFor more info: www.ameliasgiftmarkets.co.zaHalloweenHorrorfest Film FestivalWhen: Wednesday, 24 October - Friday, 2 NovemberWhere: The Labia Theatre, The Book Lounge and Cavendish Square Ster Kinekor (all Cape Town)Rising from the doctor's slab for its 8th blood curdling year, Africa's most prestigious Halloween event is set to deliver another all-encompassing Halloween event unlike any other.This all-encompassing event embraces all aspects of Horror/Chiller entertainment, its serious and lighter sides.For more information visit the Horror Fest websiteHalloween Night at uShaka When: Thursday, 26 October 2012 - Saturday, 28 October 2012Where: uShaka Marine World, DurbanEntry fee: Betwen R85 and R110Celebrating things that go "boo" in the night, uShaka Marine World together with Coca-Cola will once again make Halloween a thrilling family experience.