23 fall activities, events to get you in the Halloween spirit this October

From open farms to nighttime ghost walks and everything in between, here are Madison Magazine's list of Halloween activities this year.
couple pumpkins on a pumpkin patch

The weather here in Madison is starting to get colder, the leaves are turning yellow and the days are getting shorter. We all know that only means one thing: the start of sweater weather. Madison is full of fun things to do this October that aren’t all goblins and ghouls, so here are 23 things you can do to get you into the fall and Halloween mood.

Open Farms

Kalscheuer’s Pumpkin Farm
Close to Madison, Kalscheuer’s has a plentiful pumpkin selection, and plenty of animals on the farm you can pet including pigs, cows, calves, rabbits and kittens. Every day in October, 12-6:30 p.m., 7054 County Road K, Middleton

Schuster’s Farm
Family friendly fun is the name of the game at Schuster’s Farm. You can hang out in the petting zoo set up throughout the farm’s barns, make your way through the two massive corn mazes, pick some pumpkins and have a warm glass of apple cider all in one afternoon. Go on the last weekend of October, and you’ll even be able to shoot old pumpkins out of an air cannon. Every day in October, 9 a.m.-6 p.m., 1326 US-12, Deerfield

Treinen Farm
There is a lot to do at Treinen Farm. You can conquer the award-winning corn maze, bring a picnic, explore walking trails, pick a pumpkin and feed the goats. Kids will like the barn and adventure playground that are open for play. Wed.-Sun., 9 a.m.-10 p.m., W12420 State Road 60, Lodi

Enchanted Valley Acres
Enchanted Valley Acres has not one, but two giant slides that are each over 200 feet long, and that’s not all they have. Activities include eight acres of corn mazes, an obstacle course and a pumpkin patch. Every weekend in October, 9-6 p.m., 5047 Enchanted Valley Road, Cross Plains

Halloween at the Farm
The Schumacher Farm has spooky fun for everyone this Halloween, with events including fortune telling, sunset hay rides and live music. Kids will be able to roast s’mores and get their face painted. Oct. 23, 4-8 p.m., 5682 Highway 19, Waunakee

Apple Orchards and Pumpkin Patches

Anderson’s Pleasant Patch Pumpkins
Open for self-service daily or wagon rides out to the pumpkin patch on weekends, you’re sure to find the right gourd. Pumpkins of all sizes, gourds, squash, corn stalks, straw bales, ornamental corn and dried flowers are available for purchase. Open daily, 2313 Koshkonong Road, Cottage Grove

Appleberry Farm
This small farm has a selection of apples to pick from, plus fresh cider, caramel apples and cider doughnuts in the farm store. Open daily, 8079 Maurer Road, Cross Plains

This apple orchards pick your own season might be over, but there are still pumpkins in the patch. Six varieties of fresh apples are available in the store, along with fresh cider, cider doughnuts and honey made on site. Tues.-Thurs. 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Fri.-Sun. 9 a.m.-5 p.m., 2227 Fitchburg Road, Fitchburg

Alpine Ridge Orchard
A family run apple orchard, Alpine Ridge offers 32 varieties of apples with nine available to pick. They also offer homemade apple cider and apple cider doughnuts to pair with what you’ve picked. Alpine Ridge also has a corn maze, a pumpkin patch and farm animals. Wed.-Sun., 12-6 p.m., 5610 Alpine Road, Brooklyn

Sutter’s Ridge
This farm boasts a large apple orchard, with four varieties of apples ready to pick. Sutter’s Ridge also has a pumpkin patch and corn maze for some extra family fun. Thurs.-Sun. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., 2074 Sutter Drive, Mt Horeb

Pumpkin Party
Come get a free pumpkin and deck it out at the carving station. Beverages and snacks will be available as well. Oct. 9, 1-4 p.m., 1914 Monroe St.

Scary Stuff

Schuster’s Haunted Forest
At night, Schuster’s transforms as the ghouls and goblins of the forest come out to play. This “PG-13” haunted forest has what you’re looking for if you want a night of thrills that won’t give you insomnia. You can even reserve the bonfire spot to relax with friends and have some s’mores after your trip through the forest. All nighttime tickets are sold online, so make sure you grab them before you leave home! Weekends in October, 6-10 p.m., 1326 US-12, Deerfield

Terror at Tyrol
This haunted forest kicks it up a notch, offering four haunted attractions for the price of one. The Twisted Wood Trail starts you off with an experience in the woods, before you’re brought through a ghostly maze and eventually into the scrap yard, where Mamma Scrap is waiting for you. Weekends in October, 7-11 p.m., 3487 Bohn Road, Mount Horeb

Screamin’ Acres
If you thought Schuster’s or Tyrol weren’t scary enough, Screamin’ Acres might be the place for you. Boasting five scary attractions, including a bonus haunt that will shock you (literally), Screamin’ Acres aims to fully immerse you in horror. Weekends in October, 7-11 p.m., 3865 WI-138, Stoughton

Talking Spirits Cemetery Tour
The Wisconsin Veterans Museum will begin their in-person tours again this fall with both candlelight and daytime tours available. This year’s theme is “Wisconsin Women at War,” with four women in particular highlighted for their significant war efforts back home. Costumed reenactors will help as guides tell their stories. Oct. 9-10, Forest Hill Cemetery

American Ghost Walks
Ever wondered if Science Hall was really haunted? Find out by joining American Ghost Walks for a tour around the UW campus’s most haunted spots. The tour walks around Library Mall and up and down Bascom Hill, so come ready to hike on Oct. 22! The group hosts two other downtown ghost walks throughout October, one that travels down State Street and one on King Street. The next ones are on Oct. 15 and Oct. 22.

Other Activities

Henry Vilas Zoo

Instead of a one day event, Henry Vilas Zoo is celebrating Halloween all month long. Visitors will be treated to a self-guided Halloween-themed scavenger hunt, take rides on the Haunted Train in the Children’s Zoo and enjoy a mascot parade including Henry the Lion. Every day in October, 9:30-5 p.m., Henry Vilas Zoo

Thriller Dance Class
Most of us probably told ourselves we were going to learn Michael Jackson’s Thriller Dance at some point in our lives and never did. Well, here is your chance. Professional dance instructors from Variations Dance Studio are giving a hands-on lesson in dancing like you’re dead. Ian’s pizza and beer from Delta Beer Lab are included with a ticket. Oct. 9, 10 a.m.-1 p.m., Winnequah Park

MELSA x ALSA Pumpkin Carving Social
The Middle Eastern Law Student Association and the Asian Law Student Association are hosting a pumpkin carving event to get your Halloween on. Oct 10, 3-6 p.m., James Madison Park

The Monster Mash Dash
Lace up your running shoes and get ready to run for either the 1-mile, 5K, 10K, half or full marathon virtual races. Complete the race anytime in October and receive the Monster Mash Dash medal. At least 20% of each registration will be donated to The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. October, Anywhere

Madison Makers Halloween Market
This event features 16 local vendors selling everything from food and beer to crocheted goods. Costumes are encouraged! Oct. 23, 3-8 p.m., Delta Beer Lab

Halloween Bar Crawl
Start your costume party right this year with the fourth annual Madison Halloween bar crawl. Twelve downtown bars are participating, with Red Rock Saloon as a check in point. Oct. 23, 4 p.m.-midnight, Red Rock Saloon 

Bierock becomes “The Max”
This year Bierock has decided to transform into an homage of “Saved by the Bell” for Halloween this year, and invites you for the fun! There will be a team trivia event Saturday, before the bar transforms for a day into “The Max.” Customers are encouraged to dress up as characters from Bayside High School. Oct. 30, 7 p.m., Oct. 31, 11 a.m.-midnight, Bierock

If you’d like to enjoy some fall drink specials, check out our list here.

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