Awe, the turning of the leaves and the arrival of the Pumpkins. As the apple season passes, October arrives highlighting two of the most popular events of the year here in the Shenandoah Valley – ‘Pumpkins’ and the ‘Changing of the Leaves’ in the mountains.
Looking out at the trees and our mountain ranges, locales hold one’s breath to see what kind of color will come this year with the ‘turning of the leaves or what is called “Fall Foliage.” According to the US Forestry it is the weather that determines the brilliance of the color. So far it has been very dry but now an extended rain period is expected which could make for a beautiful fall landscape.
The Kids Trail is delighted to pick six great events for October.
Kicking off the first weekend is Great Country’s Farm 23rd annual fall festival which includes meeting P-Rex the pumpkin eating dinosaur and the lovely Pumpkin princess. Of course there will be cider donuts. And for an adult experience enjoy Bluemont Vineyard and Dirt Farm Brewery right next door both family friendly.
Just for Mom or Dad depending who loves to wear the apron in the kitchen – time to get serious about one’s love of cooking. Right here in the Winchester, Nibblins of Rutherford Crossing is offering its annual Le Creuset food demonstration on October 8th with Le Creuset Sales Representative Boyd Beasely here to answer any questions. “One can involve the kids from eights years to twelve in Heir and a Parent Halloween Treats’ offered on October 17th. Check out the class schedule this month.
October 10th finds the Kids Trail traveling to Massanutten Resort with five other partners to attend the Fall Fest. Meet The Family Drive In Theater, Explore More Discovery, Visit Harrisonburg, Back Home on the Farm, the Massanutten Water Park and of course our team from Bucket’s Kids Trail. We will have lots of activities for the kids including having a photo op with a Minion. Be right in the heart of the mountains with a chance of seeing beautiful fall foliage. Massanutten Resort is perfect for a multi-generational family stay.
One of the most unique corn mazes is at Back Home on the Farm. Who would think there could be a Dairy Queen corn maze. It’s a 5-acre birthday wish for Dairy Queen, celebrating their 75th year in business! An aMAZEing tribute to a great business. Gary and Lynne Hess live on a beautiful 240-acre farm land in Rockingham County, Virginia — literally within walking distance of the Harrisonburg city limits. The farm is open seasonally for family fun … and this year, Hess Greenhouse has relocated to the farm! While much of the farm’s fall attractions are geared toward children, there’s plenty to entertain “kids” from age two to ninety-two. “I love everything about Back Home on the Farm but particularly the Butterfly House in the Spring with the Fairy Gardens. They are growing 7 acres of pumpkins and over 40 different varieties. Plus see the amazing Pumpkin carvings.
A truly special event for the valley is the first annual celebration organized by our native American Indians and their neighbors in Clarke County. Virginia Indians are presenting a traditional harvest festival Oct. 30 – Nov.1 at the Clarke County Fairgrounds in Berryville, Va. called “The Gathering.” Celebrating the harvest with dance, regalia, storytelling, giving thanks and various social interactions … with invitation for all to learn and participate.
The event is partnering with the 14th Virginia Gourd Festival. Learn about living history exhibitors who support sustainable homesteading, green farming, a book forum with authors, sacred land preservation, children’s fine arts, craft vendors and artisans, Native American cuisine … with invitation for all to learn and participate. Over 11 Virginia tribes will be at this three day event. Join in this new and elevated spirit of Thanksgiving – “an experiment in humanity.”
Finally we end the month with Halloween. There are many events one can participate but a Bucket’s list choice is the Halloween Costume and Trunk or Treat at The Family Drive In on October 24th. A fun-filled event for all ages, Halloween costume contest, bounce houses, magic shows, music, fire trucks, hay rides, pumpkin decorating, and trunk or treating among the cars! Special seasonal movies will be offered.
Enjoy a drive on the Skyline Drive or a hike in the Shenandoah National Park. Pick one of the events and make it an overnight stay. There is way too much to experience here in the Shenandoah and Piedmont valleys of Virginia.