The heat wave finally broke and kids are back to school, which means weekends are for getting outside for some fall fun. We’ve rounded up some of the best family-friendly fall events from pumpkin patches to spider pavilions happening in and around L.A.
From Sept. 17 through Oct. 31 select your pumpkin from Tanaka Farms Pumpkin Patch, a real pumpkin patch, featuring wagon rides, strawbale maze, photo ops, arts and crafts and barnyard animals. For a more mellow experience, Hana Field Pumpkin Patch will offer pick-your-own pumpkins and flowers, in addition to the cow train, arts and crafts, root shoot and a pumpkin cannon. $10; free for ages 2 and under. Additional tickets required for certain activities. tanakafarms.com
For some all-around fall fun, make the drive to Underwood Family Farms in Moorpark for their 25th annual Fall Harvest Festival. Through the month of October, the 50-acre farm will feature a giant pumpkin patch, games, rides, photo ops, live entertainment, themed weekends and more. $14 – $28. underwoodfamilyfarms.com
On Oct. 16, the Calabasas Pumpkin Festival returns to the city of Calabasas for a full day of family-fun. The festival includes inflatable rides, games, character encounters, custom car show, Halloween themed contests, dance party, pumpkin painting booth, live music, a festival beer garden, treats and more. $15; free for ages 24 months and under. cityofcalabasas.com
Help celebrate the season with Family Fall Fest and raise funds to support Mama Made, local nonprofit benefiting mom-owned businesses. This family-friendly event features face painting, soft play area, crafts, music, photo sessions, Halloween costume sale and more. FREE; $20 suggested donation. mama-made.org
Fall Festival at The Original Farmers Market returns Oct. 22-23 with a pumpkin patch, pig races, fall themed games, live music, crafts and plenty of photo ops. FREE. farmersmarketla.com
Urban Wildlife Week is Oct. 15-22, with three free, family-friendly events throughout L.A. to learn about L.A.’s famous mountain lion P-22 and ways to preserve urban wildlife.
Urban Wildlife Week kicks off with Wildlife 2 Watts on Oct. 15 at Ted Watkins Memorial Park. Join 3rd Rock Hip Hop, L.A.-based organization that uses music to teach children about the environment, and the National Wildlife Federation for a day of musical performances, art activities and learning with native wildlife ambassadors. FREE. savelacougars.org
From Oct. 15 to 22 join National Wildlife Federation on a hike through the Santa Monica Mountains, Following the Footsteps of P-22. FREE. savelacougars.org
Finally, on Oct. 22 join the community-wide festival P-22 Day, featuring over 100 fun and educational exhibits, including a rock-climbing wall, children’s art activities and live music. FREE. savelacougars.org
Big Bear Lake Oktoberfest returns for 9 weekends of celebration this fall. Enjoy live entertainment from Balvarian polka music to a traditional German dance troupe to SoCal cover bands. The festival includes an outdoor beer garden, fun competitions and contests, a new interactive game, plus plenty of children’s fun and games such as kiddy mug holding matches, pretzel toss and an enhanced kids’ play area with giant inflatables. Saturdays and Sundays Sept. 10 through Nov. 9 and Fridays in October. $5 – $60. bigbearevents.com
Huntington Beach’s Old World Village hosts their version of Oktoberfest from Sept. 18 to Nov. 6. Explore cobblestone streets, enjoy authentic German beers and bites, and dance to bands flown from Germany. Wednesdays and Thursdays are free family nights. Fridays and Saturdays are 21+. $10 – $25 Fridays through Sundays. oldworldhb.com
Join the The Catalina Museum for Art & History for Oktoberfest on Oct. 7. Part of First Fridays at the Museum, this family-friendly event features live music by Hammerstein, an authentic Bavarian polka rock band, the traditional singing of the schnitzelbank, brats with all of the fixings, free giveaways, an Oktoberfest-themed art project for kids and German beer for adults. Guests are encouraged to dress up in lederhosen and dirndls, and B.Y.O.S. (Bring Your Own Stein) to enjoy a drink and to be entered into a raffle. $20 – $25; $10 for ages 3-15. catalinamuseum.org
Fall into nature
Join Birch Aquarium for Sunset Pier Walks along the iconic Scripps Pier Sept. 25 through Nov. 5. Experience stunning sunsets on select Saturdays and Sundays this fall while learning about fieldwork being conducted by Scripps Oceanography researchers in the 90-minute tour. Ages 9 and up. $25 – $30. aquarium.ucsd.edu
Campland celebrates its 54th anniversary during Campland on the Bay Day on Oct. 1 with festivities for both the public and resort guests. Family-friendly activities include games, food trucks, raffle prizes, live entertainment and the resort’s famous giant waterslide. FREE. campland.com
Join Natural History Museum for their annual Spider Pavilion and get a rare glimpse into the secret life of spiders. See spectacular webs, speak to educators, peek into enclosed habitats and more. Sept. 18 – Nov. 27. $7 – $15. nhm.org
South Coast Botanic Garden hosts their own Spider Pavilion, featuring hundreds of live spiders, including tarantulas inside glass cases. Oct. 1 – Nov. 30. $5 – $22. southcoastbotanicgarden.org
For more fall fun, check out our Halloween Guide.