October is the time to celebrate the fall harvest in the Chicago area. Several country-style farms in the Chicagoland offer wholesome, family fun along with a touch of old-fashioned nostalgia in the fresh air and healthy fresh produce. Take the family to see where the pumpkins, apples and corn are produced for a bit of education along with the amusement attractions. Following are some of the farm themed festivals in the Chicagoland area. Some of the farms offes special activities all week long, but the number of attractions are expanded during the weekends, so see the farm websites for details about hours and activities.
Buffalo Grove: Didier Farm's Pumpkinfest runs daily through Oct. 31. Activities include hayride and corn-maze (package deal only) $5, Pony rides, Exotic Zoo, Camels, Sunshine Crafts, corn maze and straw maze. The farm-stand sells fresh produce and pumpkins galore. The weekends hark back to nostalgic county fair activities, with lemon shake-ups, cotton candy, kettle corn, hot-dogs, grilled burgers and roasted sweet corn. Admission to Pumpkinfest is free but there is a small fee for some of the kids activities and rides. Didier Farm is at 16678 W. Aptakisic Rd., Lincolnshire, near Buffalo Grove, in the northwest suburbs of Chicago.
Hampshire: Goebbert's Pumpkin Patch Fall Festival runs through Oct. 31. The family farm offers a celebration of the fall harvest with U-Pick pumpkins, kid's amusement rides, pony rides, train rides, refreshments, farmstand and more. Goebberts' is at 42W813 Reinking Road, Hampshire, Ill., in the western suburbs of Chicago.
Lake Villa: Susanna Farms Family Harvest Days is open Sat. and Sun. through Oct. 31. Family attractions include the farm’s five acre corn maze or children’s mini-maze, the 30-minute hayride through the fields, painting a totem pole and farm displays. Visit with horses, pigs, goats, lambs, Scottish Highland cattle, baby bulls, chickens and frog pond. Pumpkins, gourds, corn stalks, gift items and food are available for sale. Admission $8. 24153 Town Line Rd., Lake Villa.
South Barrington: Goebbert's Farm and Garden Fall Festival celebrates the harvest season through Oct. 31. Experience the family farm, with attractions including 50 animals. Activities include the opportunity to feed a giraffe at eye level, pony rides, pig racing, camel rides, wagon rides, jumping pillow, corn stalk maze and more. these are just some of the activities. Red Barn Cafe & Bakery offers food and refreshments. The Fall Harvest Market offers fall produce, pumpkins, fresh apple cider donuts, caramel apples, and Michigan Apples. Goebbert's is at 40 W. Higgins Rd in S. Barrington, in the northwestern suburbs of Chicago, Ill.
Spring Grove: Stade's Shades of Autumn Fall Festival runs weekends, Sat. and Sun., through Oct. 26. The farm festival celebrates the harvest with seasonal attractions including the fresh produce at the farm-stand, corn maze, kids amusement rides, petting zoo, pony rides and tractor shows. The food and refreshment court is open on the weekends. Pumpkins are available for sale at the farmstand and in the farmyard. Customers also like to take the hayride out to the field to pick pumpkins themselves, for a fun family activity. . Admission is free, $10 fee for unlimited rides in the amusement area. Stade's is in Spring Grove, in McHenry County, in the far northwestern suburbs of Chicago, Ill. To see pictures of Stade's from a previous year, see Shades of Autumn at Stade's Farm
Spring Grove: Richardson's Adventure Farm, home to the world's largest corn maze, turns a farmer's field into a family attraction. The old-fashioned corn maze changes every year. In addition to the corn maze, there are activities including: 700' Zip Line, 50' Observation Tower, ORBiting (ride inside a giant, 11' Ball), Live Pig Races, jumping pillows, giant slides, pedal carts, wagon rides, Pumpkin Patch, picnic areas and campfires. Richardson's is at 9405 Richardson Road, Spring Grove, in McHenry County. To see pictures of Richardson's from a previous year, see Corn Maze for fall family fun at Richardson's Farm
Wadsworth: Patch 22 is open Sat. and Sun. through Oct. 27. Farm-grown pumpkins, corn stalks, straw bales, hay bales, gourds, ornamental corn, taffy apples and refreshments are available for sale. Check out the children's activities and scary Haunted Barn. Special activities include hayrides ($2/person), pony rides ($10 for a 20 minute hand-walked ride), Children's Spooky Hayloft ($2/child). No charge for parents. View the farm animals and/or experience feeding them (25 cents for feed). Admission is free. Patch 22 farm is at 15900 Kelly Rd. in Wadsworth.
Waukegan: Kroll's Fall Harvest Farm, which is open daily through Nov. 3, offers a day at the farm with farm animals, corn maze ($7 adults, $5 ages 4-12), farm tour hay rides ($3 per person), petting zoo and pumpkins. There is a picnic ground so feel free to bring a lunch. Kroll's Farm is at 13236 W. Town Line Rd. in Waukegan.
Racine: Apple Holler is in Racine, Wisc., just a few miles north of the Ill.,/Wisc. state border. The country themed farm attraction is open year around. During the month of Oct. there are a number of seasonal activities, including hay rides, pumpkinfest, apple picking and more. Apple Holler offers family fun on the farmyard in Racine this Oct.
- Tiny the Spider at Six Flags Great America for Fright Fest in Gurnee
- Scary Fear Haunted House open at Nayv Pier for Halloween month
- Fall festivals in the Chicago area weekend Oct. 10-13
- Harvest Festival a free fall fest at Lincoln Park Zoo
- 4th Highwood Pumpkinfest going for Guinness record
- Halloween fun for families at Navy Pier Chicago
- Halloween Trick or Treat hours and events in McHenry County 2013
- Halloween Trick or Treating in Lake County 2013