Hello autumn: 7 fun fall activities for kids in metro Atlanta

North Georgia State Fair at Jim R. Miller Park, 2245 Callaway Road, Marietta. (Courtesy of Cobb County)
Cobb County

In Georgia, there is truly nothing else like the fall season. When there’s cooler weather and the leaves change into a variety of vibrant colors, it makes for the perfect time to get outdoors with the kids to enjoy all sorts of family-friendly fall activities.

Whether it’s a pumpkin patch, apple picking or going on a scenic hike (in your Halloween costume!) to explore the fall foliage, there are many exciting fall activities to choose from around metro Atlanta. We’ve highlighted 7 activities below to check out with your little ones this fall:

Stone Mountain Park’s Pumpkin Festival (Play by Day, Glow at Night)

Stone Mountain Park’s Pumpkin Festival is jam-packed with fall festivities for all ages. First, hop aboard the Scenic Railroad train, then check out the character meet and greets, story-telling with Mother Goose, Emerald City jugglers and participate in a (pumpkin) pie eating contest. At night, enjoy plenty of glow-in-the-dark experiences around the festival, like glow-in-the-dark Dinosaur Explore, glow-in-the-dark mini golf, the Pumpkin Light Show and a Glow-A-Long Parade to end the night. The autumn décor is unmatched with thousands of glowing lights, giant jack-o-lanterns and a massive lit-up pumpkin tree. Everyone will love the not-so-spooky family-friendly entertainment and the festive photo-ops to capture those perfect fall memories.

Location: Stone Mountain - 1000 Robert E Lee Blvd.; Dates: Sept. 17 - Oct. 30; Website: stonemountainpark.com; Contact: 770-498-5690

Boo Fest at Six Flags Over Georgia

For those mini thrill-seekers, Six Flags Over Georgia is definitely the place to go this fall for family rides and fun at Boo Fest. Along with exciting kids rides, there will be scarecrows, hay bales, corn stalks and pumpkins to put you in the spirit of Halloween. Be sure to dress in your favorite costume to enjoy games, surprises and trick-or-treating.

CHECK OUT: The top 7 rides you must try at Six Flags Over Georgia

Location: Austell - 275 Riverside Pkwy.; Dates: Sept. 17 - Oct. 30; Website: sixflags.com/overgeorgia; Contact: 770-739-3400

North Georgia State Fair

As the largest fair in metro Atlanta, the 90th annual North Georgia State Fair offers carnival games, amusement rides, a petting zoo, delicious food and free concerts (with ticketed admission). There are plenty of entertaining shows for the whole family to enjoy like The Puppy Pals - Comedic Stunt Dog Show (as seen on America’s Got Talent), educational wildlife entertainment, pig racing, robo cars, comedy, magic shows and much more. Pro tip: Half-price tickets are available for purchase at any Atlanta-area O’Reilly Auto Parts Store.

CHECK OUT: How to get the most bang for your buck at the North Georgia State Fair

Location: Marietta - 2245 Callaway Rd. SW; Dates: Sept. 22 - Oct. 2; Website: northgeorgiastatefair.com; Contact: 770-528-8875

Halloween Hikes at Chattahoochee Nature Center

Calling all little nature explorers! Chattahoochee Nature Center invites you to experience the mystery of a guided night hike (in your Halloween costume)! Starting at 6 p.m. each night, a guide will lead a 45-minute hike on a lighted trail to meet different woodland creatures and learn how they live as well as special characters in costumes along the way. This is a non-scary family-friendly event with music, crafts, a campfire and more!

Location: Roswell - 9135 Willeo Rd.; Dates: Oct. 21, 22, 28 & 29; Website: chattnaturecenter.org; Contact: 770-992-2055

Boo at the Zoo

Get ready for some Halloween family fun with over 1,000 animals from around the world at Zoo Atlanta’s “Boo at the Zoo.” There’s a whole lineup of entertaining events with trick-or-treating, kids’ crafts, carnival games, candy thief patrol and a magic illusion show. Make sure to show up dressed in your costume and ready for some photo ops with special characters making appearances throughout the day.

Location: East Atlanta - 800 Cherokee Ave. SE; Dates: Oct. 22, 23, 29 & 30; Website: zooatlanta.org; Contact: 404-624-5936

Apple Picking

A terrific way to spend quality time with your family and create fall memories is apple picking, especially in Georgia. Less than two hours from Atlanta, you can find several U-pick apple orchards where kids (and adults!) can pick their own juicy, crisp apples. Here are just a few apple orchards worth visiting: B.J. Reece Orchards (Ellijay), Hillcrest Orchards (Ellijay), R & A Orchards (Ellijay) and Jaemor Farms (Alto). During your visit to an apple orchard, make sure to try some apple cider, fried pies or spiced donuts.

Pumpkin Patches and Corn Mazes

Visiting a pumpkin patch is an unbeatable classic fall activity for kids, and a great way to spend some time outdoors. There are many pumpkin patches in metro Atlanta that also feature other fun activities like hayrides, petting zoos, rubber duck races, navigating corn mazes and more. Here are a few farms that offer both pumpkin patches and corn mazes: Southern Belle Farms (McDonough), Randy’s Pumpkin Patch (Lawrenceville), Sleepy Hollow Farm (Powder Springs) and Uncle Shuck’s Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch (Dawsonville). No matter which pumpkin patch you visit, every single one provides an unforgettable experience where you’re sure to capture some great photos of your little ones.

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