I think the other thing is to plan for different events like cheese and beer and stuff.
It's also pretty important to book the more exclusive events as soon as possible. The special dinners and cooking schools tend to book really early. The cooking schools, in particular, fill up very fast because they have very limited spots available. Pretty much, the more recognizable the name, the quicker the session will fill up.
Like others, I would also recommend the Sam Adams "History of Beer in America" demonstration in the American Adventure Pavilion. I'm surprised Sam is not participating in a Brewer's Dinner as they have in the past--it was an incredible experience.
We've been able to make F&WF part of my daughter's birthday celebration weekend for the last couple of years. Her birthday is Oct 9 and we always go to MNSSHP and now F&WF every year. Something for everyone! :-)