Fall in Arkansas is filled with family-friendly events. From pumpkin patches to festivals, hayrides, craft fairs and more, you’re sure to find something to fill your family’s calendar in our Fall Family Fun Guide!
By Dwain Hebda
The Pumpkin Patch at BoBrook Farm, Roland
Take the short drive out to Roland for one of the prettiest pumpkin patches you will ever see. Throw a one-of-a-kind birthday party or field trip and if you’re there on the weekend, Mom and Dad can check out River Bottom Winery, right there on the farm. bobrookfarms.com
Arkansas Frontier, Quitman
Step back in time and learn how the native people and pioneers lived, worked and played in frontier Arkansas. Take the guided tour of various buildings, or just breathe in the fall air while the kids enjoy a hayride among the farm animals. arkansasfrontier.com
Motley’s Pumpkin Patch, Little Rock
A fall tradition in Central Arkansas for the past 35 years, Motley’s provides old-fashioned family fun. Pick-your-own pumpkins, tractor-drawn wagon rides and a petting zoo keep the kids entertained for hours. Check out the new Kangaroo Pillows, unique in-ground trampolines you have to try. motleyspumpkinpatch.com
Magic Screams at Magic Springs Water and Theme Park, Hot Springs
The scary good fun is back at Magic Springs. Check out the trick-or-treat trail, show off your best costume and ride the spooky-themed rides. A family movie will also be shown at 7 p.m. each night of the festival. magicsprings.com
Arkansas Razorbacks Football, Fayetteville
October 6-November 10
Arkansas plays five straight home games this fall, including four on the Hill and one at Little Rock’s War Memorial Stadium versus Ole Miss on Oct. 13. Fayetteville opponents include Alabama (10/6), Tulsa (10/20), Vanderbilt (10/27) and LSU (Nov. 10). Come call the Hogs and cheer them to victory! arkansasrazorbacks.com
Fort Smith Fall Festival
Part of the city’s yearlong Bicentennial Celebration, this free event includes vendors, food trucks, living history encampments, historical vignettes, an antique tractor show, Judge Parker’s birthday (with free cake and ice cream) kids’ games, face painting and more. fortsmith.org
Arkansas Honey Festival at Bemis Honey Farm, Little Rock
Have a sweet time at the honey farm with live music, children’s activities and food while learning about one of our favorite insects. You can also bottle your own honey onsite or learn how to start a hive of your own. bemishoneybeefarm.com
Homestead Festival, Harrisburg
October 14-15, October 21-22
Visit the restored Parker Homestead, a 19th century town that features several homes, a blacksmith shop, post office, broom shop and a one-room school house, to name a few. Take a fascinating look at history. parkerhomestead.com
Spook City/Arkansas Coffin Races, Benton
Two spooktacular events with lots to see and do, including a Lil’ Miss and Little Man Zombie Pageant (ages 3-10), zombie parade, Undead 5K, music, food, carnival and capped off by the 2nd Annual Arkansas Coffin Races. Naturally, costumes are encouraged.
War Eagle Mill Fall Arts & Crafts Fair, Rogers
Handmade arts and crafts, live music and great food match beautiful scenery at this annual event. The craft fair attracts more than 250 local artisans and hosts 125,000 visitors over four days. wareaglemill.com
Moonlight Zip/Haunted Forest Zip, Hot Springs
Don’t miss this once-a-year adventure of ziplining through the treetops in the dark of night. Watch out for ghosts, or just bask in the light of the moon during your adventure. Moonlight Zip Tours start at dusk October 20; Haunted Forest Zip Tours are at 7 p.m., 7:30 p.m., 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. October 27.
Boo at the Zoo, Little Rock
Little Rock’s biggest Halloween party, Boo at the Zoo provides carnival rides, a haunted house and nightly dance parties for ghosts and goblins of all ages. Tickets are on sale now. littlerockzoo.com
Bean Festival and Championship Outhouse Races, Mountain View
Now in its 36th year, the Bean Festival and Championship Outhouse Races in this picturesque community is an autumnal tradition. Feast on free beans and cornbread, then cheer your favorite entrant to the winner’s circle. Craft vendors and talent show round out the fun. yourplaceinthemountains.com
Boo on The Bayou, Pine Bluff October 26-27
Governor Mike Huckabee Delta Rivers Nature Center is the setting for this family-friendly event, featuring games and educational activities, prizes, inflatables, trail of terror, scary maze, food concessions and other treats. For more information call 870-534-0011.
Arkansas Cornbread Festival
A true Little Rock original, the festival raises funds for South Main (SoMa) community improvements while celebrating Southern culture and heritage. Browse crafts and listen to live music while you sample the best cornbread in the South. arkansascornbreadfestival.com
Creep ‘N Crawl 10K/5K
The Creep ‘N Crawl 10K/5K & Lil’ Monsters Dash is a family-oriented event offering some Halloween fun with a healthy dose of physical fitness. Come in costume and join the fun at Little Rock’s Two Rivers Park. creepncrawl.com
Dogtown Derby IV, North Little Rock
Take in one of the most unique racing sites you’ll ever see as drivers of all ages steer their gravity-fed cars on the downhill course on the Main Street viaduct bridge. It’s one-of-a-kind entertainment.
Call 501-771-8250 for details.
Diamonds in The Fall Festival, Murfreesboro
Craft and food vendors, pumpkin painting, a costume contest, music and trick-or-treat for kids await you at this charming community festival. While you’re there, try your luck at Crater of Diamonds State Park. mboroarkansas.com
Sorghum Festival, Mount Ida October 28
Held at the Heritage House Museum in Mount Ida, visitors can see how the pioneers made molasses to sweeten their food. The process is performed by an authentic mule-drawn sorghum mill squeeze. The gingerbread and molasses cookies alone are worth the trip. hhmmc.org
HarvestFest, Little Rock
Presented by the Hillcrest Merchants Association, HarvestFest provides lots of family fun, music, food and more. Set in the historic and highly walkable Hillcrest Neighborhood, it’s been voted one of the best festivals in the state. harvestfest.us
Thanksgiving Food Crafts, Dee Brown Library
This free workshop will teach kids how to make fun, edible treats. Open to kids ages 6 to 11. Workshop runs 4:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m. Call Dee Brown Library at 501-568-7494 for more information.
Wings Over the Prairie Festival, Stuttgart
Wings Over the Prairie is a celebration of all things duck, featuring the 83rd annual World’s Championship Duck Calling Contest, World Championship Duck Gumbo Cookoff, a midway, arts and crafts fair and more. Don’t know how to blow? Take a beginner’s duck calling lesson, open to all ages. stuttgartarkansas.org
Gobbler 5K, Little Rock
Join hundreds of runners for a pre-turkey run through Little Rock’s Heights neighborhood, all while supporting a great cause. The Gobbler is a Little Rock tradition, and the price is right; a can of food is all you need to get in on the fun. Don’t forget your costume, either. Call Go! Running at 501-663-6800 for more information.
River Trail Guided Tour, Little Rock
Take a leisurely walk along the Arkansas River Trail and on the William E. "Bill" Clark Presidential Park Wetlands boardwalk. This half-mile guided stroll will offer opportunities to view native plants and wildlife, discover the benefits of wetlands and explore nature downtown. Contact the Witt Stephens Jr. Central Arkansas Nature Center at 501-907-0636.