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Fall activities to enjoy with the whole family

Fall activities to enjoy with the whole family

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Which pumpkin? (copy) Great Pumpkin Farm

Peyton Burrows, 4, shows her parents some tiny pumpkins at the Great Pumpkin Farm.

The return of fall in Buffalo may be marked by pumpkin spice and haunted houses, but there's plenty to do with the kiddos, too. Here's a look at a few fall family events from signature festivals to iconic pumpkin patches.

Out on the farm

Becker Farms, 3724 Quaker Road, Gasport

The annual Fall Fun on the Farm event is open through Oct. 31 with a new mega slide, plus goat races, a corn maze, big hay bales, farm animal exhibits, a playground and apple picking among the many activities. Tickets are required on weekends and start at $9 for kids, $13 for adults. Rain or shine. Kids activities are from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends. Admission is free during the week when you can visit the farm market or pick your own fruit.

Great Pumpkin Farm (copy)

It's opening day of the Great Pumpkin Farm in Clarence, Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021. Ja'Mias Smith, 1, is enchanted by the llamas. 

The Great Pumpkin Farm, 11199 Main St., Clarence

Think of this popular event in two ways. On weekdays (except for Oct. 11), the farm is free for all to shop for Halloween decorations, baked goods, pumpkins, cornstalks and cider or have a bite at the Witches Brew Bar & Cafe. Admission is charged on the weekends for the Fall Festival and includes a wealth of free kiddie activities, including a petting zoo, cow train, hayride, Boo Barn entry and contests. Admission is $12 per person, $10 for seniors (age 65 and older) and free for children under age 2. The farm is open from 10 a.m. to dusk through Oct. 31.

Kelkenberg Farm, 9270 Wolcott Road, Clarence Center

Hayrides, pony rides, a pumpkin patch, giant bounce pad and other barnyard activities are all included in the admission to the farm's annual fall events. It is open from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fridays through Sundays and Columbus Day. Tickets are $11.50 to $14; admission is required for ages 2 and older to enter the barnyard or pick pumpkins.

Kelkenberg Farm hayride (copy)

Kelkenberg Farm in Clarence Center offers many fall activities including a hayride.

Special events

Halloween at the Buffalo Zoo, 300 Parkside Ave.

The zoo's "Celebrate Halloween" family event includes a corn maze, costume parade, daily demonstrations and a pumpkin patch. When kids are not meeting princesses, superheroes or wizards, they can enjoy complimentary rides on the carousel and train. Families can pick their own pumpkins and decorate them with available supplies for an additional fee. "Celebrate Halloween" is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 2-3, 9-11, 16-17 and 23-24. A Trick or Treat trail is open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tickets are $12 for Buffalo Zoo members, $29.95 for adult nonmembers, $27.95 for senior nonmembers, $25.95 for child nonmembers and free for children under 24 months.

Hollowed Harvest at the Niagara County Fairgrounds

More than 7,000 carved jack-o'-lanterns used in displays up to two stories tall will light up this annual event at the Niagara County Fairgrounds (4487 Lake Ave., Lockport). The family friendly activity takes about 35 to 40 minutes to walk through. It is open Thursdays through Sundays through Oct. 31. Timed tickets are sold and cost $20 for adults, $16 for kids.

Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village, 3755 Tonawanda Creek Road, Amherst

Since this organization works to preserve the rural heritage of the Buffalo Niagara region, it makes sense that its Fall Harvest Festival "merges educational demonstrations with fun activities." Held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 25, guests can learn about harvest traditions and enjoy numerous family activities such as pie-eating contests (12:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m.), corn-shucking contests (11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.) and hayrides (offered for a fee). Historic demonstrations include making cider using a 19th century cider press and creating corn husk dolls and dried apple rings. Cider, roasted corn and caramel apples will be sold. Tickets are available online and cost $12 for adults, $10 for military, seniors and children and free for members.

There will also be a "gently spooky" Trick or Treat from 4 to 9 p.m. Oct. 22 and 23 for ages 3 to 12. Kids accompanied by an adult can come in costume and trick or treat through the historic village. Families should bring bags or pumpkins to collect candy. Tickets are $10 for each child who is trick or treating, $8 for adulta and free for Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village members.

Western New York Family Fall Festival, 144 Lake St., Angola

Everhaunt’s Family Fall Festival is a great choice for families, offering a pumpkin selection, face painting, a kids “lights on” haunted house walk-through, a kids costume contest and food trucks. Spots such as the Rosewood County Asylum will be turned into the “Rosewood County Treasure Hunt,” where kids can also look through the old hospital and find hidden treasures. Guests will be able to take part in the “Escape from Frankenstein VR Simulator.” The event is free, but there is a charge for the haunted house ($6) and VR rides ($7). Bring a canned food donation for Operation Good Neighbor to receive $1 off admission. The event is from noon to 4 p.m. Oct. 16, 23 and 30.

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