Beyond the Pumpkin Patch: Fall and Halloween Activities to Explore Across Michigan

One reason to be thankful for being a Michigan resident is that we are able to experience all four seasons.

As the fall season begins in the Great Lakes state, pumpkin patches and apple orchards begin opening up to excited visitors. If you are looking for something new to do this fall and Halloween season, try one of these unique Michigan excursions.

Zombie 5K Run/Walk

Zombies have become a common theme in pop culture within the last few years. Celebrate your love of the undead by signing up for a spooky fun 5K.

  • Grand Rapids: The Zombie Dash happens in late October in downtown Grand Rapids from sunset to darkness. This version is unique, as the 5K is a simulation in which participants must run from zombies to survive a viral outbreak. This could be the perfect motivation to keep running.
  • Traverse City: This version of the zombie 5K allows participants to dress up as their favorite rendition of the undead. The race features a costume contest with prizes. Proceeds of the event support the Traverse Area Recreation and Transportation (TART) Trails.

Hallowe’en at Greenfield Village

Step into a re-imagined world where you will come across costumed characters, live music, performances and more at Greenfield Village. The special event has over 1,000 jack-o’-lanterns lit on a path leading you to meet different characters from classic stories, such as the Wizard of Oz, the Headless Horseman and many more. The village will also be offering hot ciders, fresh donuts and craft beers. Make sure to visit during one of the weekends in October. Find more details here.

Boo at the Zoo

Halloween at the zoo events offer a fun twist on your usual visit. You can not only enjoy viewing the wild animals, but can participate in various Halloween activities. Check each zoo’s website for details on times.

  • Detroit Zoo: Get your family dressed up in their favorite Halloween costume and bring them to take part in live entertainment, pumpkin carving demonstrations, magic acts and movies. You can visit the haunted Reptile House and even help a zoo scientist with research.
  • John Ball Zoo: The Zoo Goes Boo events encourage families to dress in costume and trick-or-treat, while enjoying other included activities, such as animal demos and live entertainment.
  • Potter Park Zoo: Come dressed in your costume and get ready to enjoy candy stations, a straw maze and activities provided by various Lansing-area community sponsors.

Oktoberfest in Frankenmuth

If you have ever wanted to experience Oktoberfest without the international travel, visit Frankenmuth during their annual festival. Frankenmuth’s Oktoberfest was declared the very first one to operate with the blessing of the original fest in Munich. The event remains authentic to its roots through entertainment, dancing, souvenirs, food and beer. For more information, visit their website.

Haunted Hayride in Marquette

Take a 40-minute tractor-drawn hayride through the abandoned Marquette County Fairgrounds. Surprises and eery encounters lurk at every turn, but all of the proceeds go to charitable organizations in Marquette County. Rides run the weekend of Oct. 19, 20 and 21. Find more details here.

Halloween Ghosts & Goodies at Crossroads Village

Visit this Flint park to take a trip through the enchanted forest, stop for treats in the village and watch magic shows. Or enjoy the beautiful fall colors by taking a 40-minute ride through the autumn countryside on the Huckleberry Ghost Train Express.

Erebus Haunted House

If you want something with a little more scare, look no further than Michigan’s very own Erebus Haunted House. Erebus is a four-story haunted attraction in Pontiac that was once deemed the largest haunted house in the world. The haunted attraction changes its scenes every year, making it a unique experience time and time again. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit their website.

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Photo Credit: F.D. Richards

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