Back in the day, fall fun often was often limited to our own yards where we jumped into piles of leaves and carved pumpkins from the grocery store.
Today’s kids – and kids at heart – have lots more outdoor adventures to choose from. From corn and straw mazes to U-pick pumpkin patches and other activities, the QC area is loaded with fun fall options!
Here are a few QC-area venues (and places a bit beyond but worth the drive) to check out for fall fun.
Some are already open and some open only on weekends or weekend nights, so be sure to visit their websites for hours, admission fees and other details.
Stones Apple Barn This QC tradition is open 7 days/week after Labor Day.
Tanners Orchard U-Pick in the orchard and family fun in the Back 40 Fun Acres will open Sept. 1. Located in Speer, IL.
Wilson’s Orchard An hour from the QC, just north of Iowa City, you’ll find rolling acres of beautifully maintained grounds planted with hundreds of apple trees. Load up the family for a day of fun, and check out other nearby attractions below!
Pumpkins, Mazes & More
This spot is a nearly 2-hour drive, just west of Cedar Rapids off Highway 30.
Open Sept. 15- Oct. 31, it’s become a tradition for many. Enjoy 2 corn mazes, ziplines, jumping pillow, straw jump, tire maze and many other attractions.
Worth the trip, any day of the week. Be sure to wear comfy shoes!
A sorghum maze and moon bounce await you 7 days a week at the Buffalo Pumpkin Farm located near Buffalo, Iowa. Open now through Oct. 31!
Drive south to Alpha, IL for Country Corner’s fall fun beginning Sept. 14.
You’ll find a corn maze, jump pad, nature trail, U-pick pumpkins and Indian Corn.
Zombie paintball and nighttime flashlight maze are offered after dark. Be sure to call ahead for details!
Drive a short distance north of the QC to Long Grove for Pride of the Wapsi farm, open Sept. 29 – Oct. 28.
Pride of the Wapsi features 2 corn mazes, one that takes about 20 minutes and another that takes 40 minutes. You can also roam the patch for the perfect pumpkin, step through a giant spider web, crawl through a tunnel and play in a big sandbox.
You’ll be ready for a rest after your outing … and the kids will sleep great that night!
Colony Pumpkin Patch invites people of all ages to visit their farm in North Liberty, IA. You can hunt for that perfect pumpkin, find some great fall decor, enjoy a hayrack ride, play in the Lil’ Pumpkin Playground, or try your directional skills in a 10-acre corn maze!
And, if you are looking for something a little creepy you can test those directional skills in the corn maze at night!
Open Sept. 21 – Oct. 27, 2019 (visit website for earlier events)
Haunted QC Farms, Forests
Called “the place where corn and nightmares grow,” this Princeton, Iowa farm lives up to its spooky reputation!
Choose from laser tag, and indoor maze and an outdoor maze with 4 acres of twisting paths and haunted corn!
Open every weekend in October, weather permitting, at 7 pm. Ticket sales begin at dark!
Enjoy a hayrack ride to the entrance gates of the Haunted Forest.
On foot suddenly and irrevocably you will find yourself walking in the middle of acres of unrelenting darkness. If you make it out of the woods, you will finish your journey on a haunted hayrack ride.
NOTE: You must walk on and through rough terrain that is not handicapped accessible.
Located in Port Byron, the Haunted Forest is open to the public starting Oct. 5th on every Friday & Saturday night through October: 7pm – 11pm.
Nearby Day Trips
Iowa Raptor Center Located at Iowa’s Lake Macbride State Park, the raptor center is home to many raptors who can no longer care for themselves. Stroll among the outdoor aviaries to see American kestrels, bald eagles, vultures and owls up close!
Coralville Lake and Devonian Fossil Gorge When the flood waters of 1993 and 2008 receded, thousands of fossils were discovered in this amazing ancient ocean floor. The whole family will love exploring it!