The Go-To Guide: Top Spots for Fall Family Fun in Central Ohio

Julanne Hohbach
jhohbach@columbusparent.com
Pigeon Roost Farm

As the weather starts to cool down, the fun heats up in Central Ohio. Fall activities are abundant in September and October—some with autumn themes, others timed to Halloween.

We’ve compiled a roundup featuring some of the most popular celebrations for family fun, along with a few other favorites. Bonus: Many of the events are free. 

Find more seasonal activities in our monthly installments of “The Fam Five,” the travel story on leaf peeping spots in our Fall issue, and our online events calendar.

To suggest an addition to our list, send an email to contact@columbusparent.com

Get top reads, event recommendations, guides, parenting trends and more ideas for family fun. Subscribe to Columbus Parent’s weekly e-newsletter, The Bulletin.

Sept. 6 to Oct. 30

Lynd Fruit Farm

9399 Morse Road SW, Pataskala (corn maze is at 9851 Morse Road SW); lyndfruitfarm.com

10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays

Lynd Fruit Farm will celebrate fall this year with an Apple-Mania corn maze. Other activities include a barrel train, Fun Zone, inflatables and wagon rides. Prices are based on activities chosen. The venue also offers “pick your own” fruit and a pumpkin patch.

Sept. 7 to Oct. 27

The Orchard & Co.

7255 U.S. Route 42, Plain City; theorchardandcompany.com

11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays

The annual Fall Festival features a variety of activities, including wagon rides, animal visits, a corn pit, pedal cars and a hay barn. Admission is $10, free for ages 2 and younger. Some activities have an extra charge.

Sept. 14 to Oct. 27

The Maize at Little Darby Creek

8657 Axe Handle Road, Milford Center; mazeandberries.com

5-10 p.m. Fridays, noon to 10 p.m. Saturdays, noon to 6 p.m. Sundays

The centerpiece of the 18th annual Maize at Little Darby Creek event is a 9-acre corn maze celebrating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. Other activities include a ball zone, a pumpkin blaster, games and laser tag. Base admission is $10, free for ages 2 and younger. Additional activities, including pumpkin picking and hayrides, are available for a fee. 

Sept. 14 to Oct. 31

Pigeon Roost Farm

4413 National Road SW, Hebron; pigeonroostfarm.com

10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesdays through Sundays

The annual PumpkinFest at Pigeon Roost features play areas, a corn maze, obstacle courses, games, farm animals and wagon rides on weekends. Admission is $8, free for children younger than 2. There is no charge to enter the pumpkin patch.

Sept. 21 to Oct. 27

Freeman’s Farm

6142 Lewis Center Road, Galena; freemansfarm.com

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays

Each year, the farm hosts a Fall Festival where visitors can take a hayride, watch scarecrow making, pet farm animals and, on select days, view apple butter demonstrations. Admission is free; there is a charge for some activities.

Sept. 21 to Oct. 27

Hidden Creek Farms

581 S. Galena Road, Sunbury; hiddencreekfarms.com

10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays

Visitors to this working farm’s Fall Festival can catch a hayride to the pumpkin patch, meet farm animals, play games and check out a play barn, slides and a straw maze. Admission is $7, free for children younger than 2. 

Sept. 21 to Oct. 27

Lehner’s Pumpkin Farm

2920 State Route 203, Radnor; lehnerpumpkins.com

10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays (plus Friday, Oct. 18), 4:30-7 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays

This family farm hosts a fall event that includes corn mazes, bouncers, a play barn, animals, barnyard golf and more. Most activities are included in the price of admission, which is $7 for adults, $9 for ages 3-17 and free for ages 2 and younger. 

Sept. 22 to Oct. 27

Leeds Farm

8738 State Route 36, Ostrander; leedsfarm.com

10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays

This family-owned farm opens on fall weekends for activities such as hayrides, paintball, farm animals, pig races, zip lines and farm-themed play areas. Admission is $10 for adults, $12 for children ages 3-18 and free for ages 2 and younger. There is an additional charge for some activities.

Late September (Dates TBD)

Circle S Farms

9015 London Groveport Road, Grove City; circlesfarm.com

9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily

The farm’s Fall Fun Days include play barns, a petting zoo, a corn maze and hayrides to the pumpkin patch. Details had not been announced as of mid-August.

October (Date TBD)

Miller’s Country Gardens

2488 State Route 37 W., Delaware; millerscountrygardens.com

9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays, noon to 5 p.m. Sundays

A pumpkin patch, hayrides and a corn maze are part of the fall fun at this family farm operation. Admission is free. 

Oct. 6

Upper Arlington Fall Fest

Fancyburg Park, 3375 Kioka Ave., Upper Arlington; upperarlingtonoh.gov/event/fall-fest

1-5 p.m.

Activities at this city event include pumpkin carving, hayrides, a petting zoo, games, apple cider pressing and live music. Admission is free.

Oct. 11-13, 18-20 and 25-27

Boo at the Zoo

Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, 4850 Powell Road, Powell; columbuszoo.org

5-9 p.m. Fridays, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sundays

The zoo bills this annual event as a “merry-not-scary” happening. Highlights include Halloween décor and character visits. Children can dress up and collect candy from treat stations. Other activities typically include special shows, hayrides and pumpkin carving demonstrations. Included with zoo admission.

Oct. 15-17

Golden Bear Scare

Smith Nature Park, 1270 Fishinger Road, Upper Arlington; upperarlingtonoh.gov/event/golden-bear-scare

6:30-9 p.m.

A Scare Ranger leads groups through the woods and explains the history of the “haunted” park, where visitors encounter witches, a troll and zombies. Recommended for children in grades 1-8. Admission is free.

Oct. 16-19

Circleville Pumpkin Show

Downtown Circleville; pumpkinshow.com

One of Ohio’s greatest fall traditions, this four-day festival, which started in 1903, draws an estimated 400,000 visitors. Activities include plenty of pumpkin-related contests, rides, parades, pageants, live music and more. Admission is free.

Oct. 18-19, 25-26

Haunted Statehouse Tours

Ohio Statehouse, 1 Capitol Square, Columbus; ohiostatehouse.org

7-9 p.m.

Visitors will encounter figures from the past while following conductors with lanterns through the darkened hallways and chambers of the Statehouse. This historical tour is spooky but appropriate for all members of the family. Tickets, which must be purchased in advance, are $12 for adults and $6 for children ages 12 and younger. 

Oct. 19

Community Bonfire

Village Green Park, 47 Hall St., Powell; cityofpowell.us

6-8 p.m.

The Powell Police Department and Liberty Township Fire Department are partnering again on this free annual event, which features hot dogs, cider, doughnuts and roasted marshmallows.

Oct. 19

Creepside Festival

Creekside Park & Plaza, 117 Mill St., Gahanna; creepsidefest.com

11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

This annual all-ages event organized by the city of Gahanna features trick-or-treating along Mill Street, games, live music, a Dino Exploration, superheroes, inflatables and a Not-So-Scary Trail. Admission is free.

Oct. 20

Halloween Pet Parade & Fall Festival

Fenlon Square, Easton; eastontowncenter.com

Noon to 3 p.m.

This kid-friendly annual event features a costume contest for pets, a pet parade and children’s activities. The event is free.

Oct. 20

Trick or Treat Trail

Gallant Woods Park, 2151 Buttermilk Hill Road, Delaware; preservationparks.com

1-4 p.m.

Children attending this free, all-ages event can dress in costume and collect treats from characters along the trail. Visitors also can decorate a pumpkin, go on a hayride and vote for their favorite scarecrow.

Oct. 24

Dublin Spooktacular

Dublin Community Recreation Center, 5600 Post Road, Dublin; dublinohiousa.gov/events/halloween-spooktacular

3-8 p.m.

This annual family event is sponsored by the city of Dublin. Children can come in costume for all sorts of fall festivities, including hayrides, a Haunted Trail, the Turtle Lady and the Bug Man. Admission is free. Tickets are required for the Trunk or Treat Trail in Coffman Park. 

Oct. 26

Candy by the Carload

Powell Municipal Building, 47 Hall St., Powell; cityofpowell.us

4-6 p.m.

Powell businesses and organizations set up booths and car trunks to pass out candy and Halloween goodies to costumed children at this free annual event.

Oct. 26-27

Trick or Treat at the Conservatory

Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, 1777 E. Broad St., Columbus; fpconservatory.org

10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Children are encouraged to dress in costume as they visit indoor and outdoor trick-or-treat stations and check out the fall décor. The event is included with conservatory admission. Don’t miss the annual Harvest Blooms display, which runs from Sept. 21 to Oct. 27. 

Oct. 30

Pickerington Haunted Village

Olde Pickerington Village, Center and Columbus streets; pickerington.net

6-8 p.m.

This free annual family event features a haunted house and museum, ghost tours, hayrides and trick-or-treating at Olde Village businesses.