With at least a little bit of sunshine expected in the forecast, why not head out this weekend to one of the three local fall festivals taking place around North Marion County?
Baumans Farm & Gardens near Gervais, French Prairie Gardens in St. Paul and Woodburn Shoe Tulip Farm east of Woodburn will each be hosting fall activities through the end of October.
Activities range from pig barrel train rides to zombie hunts. Of course, there will be pumpkin patches, corn mazes and hay tractor rides for all.
The events are great for the family, so bring the kids and have fun at the farm.
Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm
The farm best known for its springtime tulip festival will offer many hands-on activities that explore some of the different crops grown on the farm, including a wheat grinder, haunted corn maze, tulip planting and roping station.
Two new developments at Wooden Shoe include archery tag, which is a daytime activity where players on teams shoot marshmallow-tipped arrows at each other. A zombie hunt takes place at night.
We will load riders onto our zombie hunter where they will try to eliminate the zombie population we have out here on the farm, said Barb Iverson, co-owner of the farm.
Sounds like a scary time for all.
Where: 33814 S. Meridian Road, east of Woodburn
When: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. all days
Cost: Ages 4 and under are free; ages 5-12, $6; ages 13 and up, $7.
More information: Visit www.woodenshoe.com/pumpkin-fest/events.
Baumans Farm & Garden
Perhaps the biggest and best-known fall festival is held at Bauman Farms, which draws thousands of people every year. The farm is transformed into an activity center with mazes, slides, obstacle courses and other farm-related features.
This year, Bauman is offering new activities, including the haunted farm house, gem mining and a pumpkin pyramid.
We are always looking for better ways to entertain our guests each year, and we are excited to introduce these new features, said Brian Bauman, director of marketing.
There is a mix of free and ticketed activities at the farm.
Where: 12989 Howell Prairie Road N.E., Gervais
When: Monday-Saturday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m., Sunday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m
Cost: Wrist band costs $14 on weekends, or $52 for a family of four
More information: Visit www.BaumanFarms.com or call 503-792-3524.
French Prairie Gardens
We give organizers props for originality. Special events this year include the Pigtucky Derby and hay wagon rides on the weekends. They also have pig barrel train rides. No actual pigs are believed to be used. Where: 7673 French Prairie Road, St. Paul
When: Tuesday-Saturday 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Closed Mondays
Cost: $6 during the week, free admission and parking on the weekends
More information: Visit www.fpgardens.com or call 503-633-8445.