Summer is slowly turning into fall, and the number of fun activities and events for families is not slowing down one bit. Ohio really shines during this season — there are just so many ways to celebrate autumn with your family. Here are some great ideas to make the most of this wonderful season!
Enjoy the changing colors by train
Ohio is at its most beautiful in the fall, and seeing the fall foliage on a train takes the fall feeling to a whole other level. Lebanon-Mason Monroe Railroad’s Turtle Creek Flyer runs through October 27 and will take you through the picturesque countryside of Southwest Ohio. And if you’re up for a road trip into Indiana, Whitewater Valley Railroad’s Valley Flyer takes riders on a tour of Indiana’s historic and beautiful canal town, Metamora.
Take advantage of fall’s cooler temps by going on a family hike. Between the Great Parks of Hamilton County, Cincinnati Parks and Five Rivers MetroParks in Dayton, there are lots of kid-friendly ways to get your steps in.
There’s something about fall that makes you want to pick your own produce. Fortunately, there are plenty of U-pick opportunities in the area. Iron’s Fruit Farm in Lebanon is one of the finest in the tristate; their U-pick season runs into October and features Paula Red, McIntosh and Gala varieties. Meanwhile, A&M Farm Orchard is a Midland gem, and Peifer Orchards in Yellow Springs is open on the weekends to satisfy your produce-picking needs.
Watching your kids trudge across an orange-speckled field of pumpkins is a parental rite of passage. Shaw Farms, Burwinkel Farms, Bonnybrook Farms and Brown’s Family Farm all boast a beautiful selection of fall’s unofficial mascot. And if you’re looking for an Insta-worthy background for your pumpkin pics, Young’s Jersey Dairy in Yellow Springs has one of the most picturesque pumpkin patches in Ohio!
Do a fall festival
It just isn’t fall without festivals. Local favorites include Dayton Fall Festival on September 25, Fall Fest at Neltner’s Farm in Melbourne, Kentucky, and Gorman Heritage Farm’s famous Sunflower Festival in Evendale.
Why not get a little corny this season? Blooms & Berries has two corn mazes: a 7-acre labyrinth that takes an hour to conquer and a smaller, more kid-friendly, 15-minute maze. Over in Milford, Shaw Farms boasts a 15-acre maze that’s challenging but doable.
Take a hayride
Hayrides are a must-do in the fall. The hay rides at Schappacher Farms in Wilmington will take you straight to the action (the pumpkin patch!), and Neltner’s Farm takes guests on one of the most beautiful wagon rides in the tristate. The covered wagon rides at Bonnybrook Farms are also a fun ride!
Go trick-or-treating before Halloween
Can’t wait for the big night? There are plenty of opportunities to go trick-or-treating before October 31. HallZOOween at the Zoo is a family favorite (don’t forget to bring your own treat bag!) Sharonville’s Haunted Village at Heritage Village Museum features trick-or-treating in a slightly frightening setting that’s great for kids.