Philadelphia

25 Scary Haunted Houses, Ghost Tours & Hayrides for Philly Teens and Tweens

This Halloween season, teens and tweens in the Philadelphia area have plenty of options for a spooky adventure. We’ve compiled a list of haunted houses, hotels and hospitals, ghost tours, zombie-filled amusement parks, horrifying hayrides, and creepy corn mazes. Older kids will encounter witches, werewolves, skeletons, bloody monsters, ghosts, and ghouls around every corner at many of these terrifying entertainment attractions. Most of these events are NOT recommended for children under the age of 12. Be sure to check each location's website for more info on dates and schedules. Enter if you dare!

20 Not-So-Scary Halloween Activities for Philly Area Kids

For most, Halloween is an exciting time of year filled with sweet treats and an excuse to dress up as a favorite superhero or princess. However, some Halloween fun can be a bit unsettlingly for little ones. Spooky costumes and scary decorations can leave young children (and even some older ones) frightened and rattled. So, if your family is looking for Halloween fun without the spook, look no further. Mommy Poppins Philadelphia has rounded up some of the area's best seasonal fun without the scare factor. From train rides to scavenger hunts to amusement park fun to a theater production, there is something to suit the kids in your crew.

Be sure to browse our recently published Ultimate Guide to Halloween Fun and Free Halloween Fun in the Delaware Valley with additional ideas. For now, read on for our top Not So Scary Halloween activities.

Hersheypark's Brand-New Chocolatetown Looks Mighty Sweet

Just when you thought a visit to Hersheypark couldn't get any more tempting, the Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, amusement park announced a sweet surprise for fans of its chocolate emporium. It's adding a Chocolatetown, an all-new section of the theme park that will connect Hersheypark and Hershey's Chocolate World, opening in the summer of 2020. Expect a major new roller coaster, and yes, plenty of chocolate, including new dessert spots.

The expansion will further the vision of Milton S. Hershey, a real-life Willy Wonka, who brought his sweet dream to life in 1907 when he built the 121-acre amusement park as a perk for his chocolate factory workers and their families.

The School in Rose Valley is a One-of-a-Kind Find Near Philly

Picking a preschool or elementary school is a big decision, so when we hear about a one-of-a-kind option like The School in Rose Valley, we're eager to get the scoop (and share the details, of course). Nestled away in the woods, this progressive preschool through 6th grade program pairs organic gardening, fort building, and chicken coop tending with a challenging core curriculum that includes literacy, math, science, social studies, Spanish, woodshop, art, and music. Plus, the beautiful, sprawling campus is just a short drive from Philly.

We spoke with the Head of School, Rod Stanton, to learn a little more about the oh-so-unique program. Read on to find out if The School in Rose Valley might be just the right fit for your family, and save the date for the upcoming Fall Family Open House & Children's Book Fair on Saturday, November 3.

Best Neighborhoods to Trick-or-Treat for Philadelphia Kids

Once again (and to no surprise to any of us who live here) Zillow's annual list of best cities for trick-or-treating has named Philly among the top five. If the kids are looking to score a ton of candy for Halloween this year, it looks like they're in luck. Usually the best way to find a great neighborhood for trick-or-treating is to head out and look for lights and decorations, but if you don't have the time (or the energy) to drive around in the dark, we've got you covered. We've talked to local parents and candy-givers alike, and gathered up the best of the best neighborhoods for getting some sweet treats.

Read below to see if your neighborhood made the cut. For those who were not born and raised here, the question of "when is Halloween celebrated?" is always answered with "on Halloween!" Which is to say, we trick or treat on October 31 even if it is a school night, but there are also great ways to celebrate throughout the month of October if you want to make sure you maximize your ROI on those costumes, including found plenty of free Halloween events—not to mention a few amusement park haunts.

Stretch the Legs with a Philly Walking Tour of Ben Franklin, Art, and History

Benjamin Franklin and Philadelphia go hand in hand. Franklin’s fingerprints are all over the City of Brotherly Love, from the nation’s first hospital, Pennsylvania Hospital, on the east end of the city to the University of Pennsylvania on the west. Franklin helped found both institutions and, unsurprisingly, the city is full of public art paying tribute to one of its favorite sons. The Association for Public Art has put together a wonderful interactive map of “Benjamin Franklins” in the city, and there is no better way to spend a crisp fall day then a walking tour to check some of them out.

There are 14 potential sites to visit, which may be a bit ambitious for all but the most dedicated Franklinophiles. Read on for some kid-friendly highlights of the Ben Franklin statue tour of Philly.

The Gerber Baby Photo Search Is Happening Now on Instagram

Think your kid is the cutest? Well, baby food maker Gerber just opened its annual Gerber Baby photo contest, so it’s time to take your best shot.

Parents can enter newborns to children up to age 4 in the photo search contest that selects a child ambassador for the brand. Simply post a photo of your cutie to Instagram with the hashtag #GerberPhotoSearch2018 between October 1 and October 20 to join in the fun. Remember to make your profile public, so Gerber can see your photo.

Columbus Day Weekend Fun for Philly Kids:Trucks, Tractors, History, Sea Turtles October 6-8

It's Columbus Day weekend, a time when Philly families may have an extra day off from school and work. Make the most of the additional free time with some fall fun found in our event calendar.

For families who love history, head to Newlin Grist Mill for its Fall Harvest Festival to learn about 18th century trades or visit the Betsy Ross House in Historic Philadelphia to watch Colonial Chocolate Making demonstrations. For kids who love things that go, consider exploring Trucks and Tractors at Winterthur, paddling a kayak along the Schuylkill River, or taking a train ride to see the changing leaves on the West Chester Railroad. Families seeking indoor fun can learn about sea turtles at Adventure Aquarium, discover what a Harvest Moon is at Wagner Free Institute of Science, or see Five Little Pumpkins take the stage at The Media Theatre. Don't forget to take part in one of the many fall festivals occurring throughout the Delaware Valley.

Filter through our event calendar by using tags, location, and age to find the perfect way to spend your weekend. For now, keep reading for our top picks!

LEGOLAND Brick or Treat Returns with More LeGHOULish Surprises

This October, your little one can get spooky with LEGO ghosts and ghouls and skeletons and more at the second annual Brick-or-Treat celebration at the LEGOLAND Discovery Center. Kids are encouraged to wear costumes (making yet another great space for you to get extra mileage out if it!) as they participate in frightening family fun every Saturday (10:00AM-7:30PM) and Sunday (10:00AM-6:00PM) through October 28. We got a chance to check it out along with my LEGO-loving little one. Here's what you can expect!

Want to check out some more Halloween fun in the Philly area? We've got your covered with our Ultimate Guide to Halloween Events.

Free Things to Do with Philly Kids in October

Autumn is the time of year when Philly families can enjoy the crisp October air, take a hayride, pick apples from the orchard, select pumpkins from the patch, and get ready for one of the most exciting nights of the year, Halloween. While some activities can be expensive, there are so many cost-effective ways to enjoy the change in seasons on a budget.

Mommy Poppins Philadelphia has rounded up plenty of options to keep everyone in the family entertained while saving money. This month features free experiences including a hands-on building project, a photography workshop, and science day festivities.  Outdoor activities include bird watching at Riverbend, boating on the Schuylkill River, outdoor movies in the park, playing among the trees at the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, and even a haunted hayride at Green Lane Park! Towards the end of October, plenty of free Halloween fun awaits Philly kids so be sure to review our recently updated post to find great ways to get multiple uses out of those adorable and spooky Halloween costumes.

For now, keep reading for free fun for the month ahead.

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