As cool crisp nights begin to make outdoor excursions more bearable, fun fall-themed activities for families to enjoy seem to pop up all over. You can choose to engage in traditional favorites such as apple picking and harvest festivals, or go on an adventure, exploring a corn maze as a family.
Many area farms have professionally designed mazes spanning several acres, with new designs each year that can take up to two hours to complete. Many of the large mazes have special themed games where visitors follow clues along the way, testing their knowledge and navigational skills. Older kids will appreciate the nighttime flashlight mazes or scary Halloween themes, while the younger set will enjoy the smaller hay mazes available at most farms. Whatever your family’s adventure level is, this list is sure to have something for everyone.
Cherry Crest Adventure Farm Lancaster—Ronks
The corn maze at this farm contains over 2.5 miles of paths, bridges, and clues across five-acres in the Amazing Maise Maze, designed each year by Don Frantz and the American Maze Company. Choose different challenge levels based on how quickly they would like to complete the maze, which may take anywhere from 20 minutes to several hours. On Friday and Saturday nights in the fall, visitors can bring their own flashlight and tour the maze in the dark. Other activities available include wagon rides, barnyard animals, play areas, pumpkin picking, and many edible treats. The farm is open Tuesday to Friday, 10 AM–5 PM and Saturdays 10 AM–7 PM.
This year's maze at Hellerick's features a farm animal theme. Photo courtesy of Hellerick's Farm's Facebook page
Hellerick's Family Farm—Doylestown
Designed for good old fashioned family fun, the five-acre maze takes about 45 to 60 minutes to complete. A one-acre junior maze is perfect for the smaller kids. Moonlight hayrides and the flashlight maze are Friday and Saturday evenings. Other entertainment includes 100-foot corn chute slides, tractor tricycles, hayrides, a corn box, and many other activities. With 18 acres and more than 45 family-centered activities, you can make a day of this farm visit. The fall harvest festival with special fall programming runs daily September 16-October 31, 2017 from 10 AM–6 PM.
Hurricane Hill Farm Corn Maze—Coatesville
The corn maze opens Saturday, September 16 2017. This year's theme is the "Great Train Adventure" with a maze shaped like a giant steam engine. Guests may choose the one-acre beginner’s maze or the larger, train-themed maze which is 5 acres. Hurricane Hill estimates that it takes about one hour to complete the larger maze, and it offers a maze tracker system where visitors can follow their progress on their smart phones. You can also choose from 1 of 3 games to play while you're in the maze, which include word jumbles, picture stations, and more. In addition to the corn maze, guests can enjoy pumpkin picking, hay rides, pedal tractors, a cow train, moon bounces, and, new this year, a pumpkin jump and tire course. The maze is open Saturdays and Sundays 10 AM–6 PM through November 5. Flash Light Nights are Friday, October 13, 20, and 27, 2017 running from 6–9 PM.
The five-acre cornfield maze at Merrymead is open Saturdays 11 AM–4 PM, and Sundays from noon–4 PM through October 30, 2017. Moonlight Maze hours are Fridays and Saturdays from 6–8 PM. Younger children can enjoy the 700-foot cornstalk tunnel which is open during the week and on weekends. Harvest Festival weekends also include children’s games, moon bounces, face painting, hay rides, and more. And don't miss the lighting of the "Great Pumpkin" when the festival kicks off on September 29.
The Shady Brook Farm corn maze features a Johnny Appleseed motif this year. Photo courtesy of Shady Brook Farm's Facebook page
Shady Brook Farm—Yardley
This year, Shady Brook Farm has a giant Johnny Appleseed-themed maze. The fun begins October 6 and continues daily until October 31, 2017 11 AM–4 PM daily. After dark, there's Pumpkinfest, a fun, friendly nighttime treat, or Horrorfest, a scarier option. Pumpkinfest After Dark is October 13, 20, 26 & 27; Horrorfest is Fridays and Saturdays, 6–10 PM and Sundays 6–9 PM.
Springdale Farms—Cherry Hill, NJ
Families can journey through this themed corn maze. Visitors can expect to spend about two hours navigating the clues and the many twists and turns of this maze that spans several acres.There is a small hay maze for younger children, along with other fun farm activities. Open Saturdays and Sundays 10 AM–4 PM beginning in mid-September.
This five-acre maze is both family-fun and a great learning experience with clues and games hidden within the maze. Fall fun kicks off September 23, 2017.
Winding Brook Farm—Warrington
Make your way through the five-acre family-friendly maze, then take on the scary haunted hay maze, another five-acre haunted corn maze, and the cornwalk of horror. The attractions are open the last Friday in September, Fridays and Saturdays in October, and the last two Sundays of October, 7:30–10 PM.
With more than eight miles of trails, be prepared to experience one of the largest corn mazes in the area (well worth the approximately one-hour drive from Philadelphia). There is also a small corn maze and play area for younger children.
Browse our Halloween Guide for even more seasonal fun ideas.
Photo of Hellerick's Farm courtesy of Cait Sumner for Mommy Poppins