Temperatures are dipping, the pumpkins are growing, and the hay bales are coming out. It can all only mean one thing: it’s time for fall! While this is the ideal season for cozy movie marathons and bonfires, the city is full of different activities guaranteed to help you make some memories this autumn. If you’re looking for the perfect way to celebrate this season, I’d love to give you a quick rundown of some of my favorite Charlotte fall activities.
Autumn Jubilee is an annual festival in Rowan County that attracts over 50,000 visitors. Over the course of two days, the celebration features food and music. You’ll get to view the works of various artisans, enjoy some kettle corn, and take a spin on the hayride. While many of the vendors do accept credit cards, the festival asks that you bring cash just in case. You can find the 42nd Jubilee in Salisbury.
Patterson Farm in Salisbury provides Charlotte visitors with pumpkin patch tours and other activities to ring in the fall season. From late September to early November, the farm provides your family with tons of information regarding what goes into growing everyone’s favorite autumnal produce. Your child will get to watch a puppet show, spend some time in the barnyard, ride on a tractor, and find their own pumpkin fresh from the patch.
Every year, Carowinds closes out their season with a few fall festivals. While their Great Pumpkin Fest is ideal for younger kids, their Scarowinds Fest delivers big thrills for visitors ages 13 and older. The park features scare zones, haunted mazes, and a Procession of Nightmares parade. The rides stay open while the live shows get a little spookier. While you’re there, you can treat yourself to some deliciously creepy treats.
Windy Hill Orchard is a family-owned apple farm that lets you pick your own apples throughout the entire fall season. When you’re not picking fruit straight from the branches, you’ll be able to taste some hard ciders and listen to live music. The farm has a stand where you can buy fresh goods to enjoy at home.
From mid-September to late October, Rural Hill in Huntersville creates a giant corn maze in their fields. The challenge is perfect for visitors of all ages. Along the way, you’ll discover hidden clues and find secret pathways. You can choose to try out the maze either day or night. Each evening, the maze brings in different food trucks, giving you the ability to try out cuisine from all across North Carolina.
If you’re looking for the best way to check out the changing leaves, you’ll adore Crowders Mountain State Park. The park features hiking trails, picnic shelters, and a visitor center. You’ll be able to paddle, rock climb, boulder, and canoe. The trail has over 20 miles of premium hiking and takes you across Gaston County. You’ll have access to trails for every level of difficulty. So you can select the one that’s right for you.
For years, Aw Shucks Farms in Monroe provided Charlotte area families with fall activities, corn mazes and animals, but recently, the property underwent a bone-chilling transformation. Over the cooler autumn nights, the farm turns into the ultimate haunted attraction. The 13 acres feature three different areas, all with their own unique set of frights. After you’re done exploring, you can check out the 1950s soda shop, dance along with a DJ, or hang around the bonfire.
The Hunter Farm is a marvelous destination for younger kids. During the fall, the Weddington farm brings out a petting zoo so your child can get up close to some of their barnyard faves. A wagon ride will take you to and from the petting area, giving you a premium view of the farm. You can also stop by their market for a farm-grown pumpkin or the perfect fall-themed front porch decorations.
The Halloween Treat Trail leaves behind all the tricks in favor of something a little sweeter. This Cornelius activity takes place the Saturday before Halloween. Children ages 12 and under can throw on their best costumes and stop by for hours of trick-or-treating. All the candy is nut-free and prepackaged. Outside of collecting some goodies, Charlotte kids can play games, check out some fun fall activities, and end the evening with a family-friendly movie.
The BOOllantyne Halloween Experience is an event within the Ballantyne Amp that takes place the Friday before Halloween. The festival invites visitors of all ages to come in costume, go food truck hopping, and watch a Halloween movie. The location sells adult beverages and sets up plenty of activities to enjoy between drinks. If you’re feeling especially creative, you can sign up for the pumpkin carving contest.
The Carolina Jubilee is a musical event that is held at Van Hoy Farms in Harmony. The last Friday and Saturday in September, you’ll be able to watch various concerts on stage. Between sets, you can grab a beer and visit the food trucks. All the funds from the festival go toward the Carolina Food Trust to find sustainable, eco-friendly ways to supply us all with the foods we love so much.
Mint Hill Madness is a three-day event full of activities for all ages. The festival takes place in the town of Mint Hill and brings together live music with thrilling rides and delicious food for an unforgettable weekend. Your family will get to jump on inflatables, compete in a scarecrow contest, and play classic fair games. The weekend wraps up with a spectacular fireworks display sure to impress!
If you’re looking for a fabulous way to celebrate the end of the summer, check out some of these Charlotte fall activities. No matter what you’re in the mood for this autumn, I can guarantee you’ll find something you love!
Whether you’re searching for more recommendations or need some additional ways to make memories, I would love it if you stuck around for a bit! I’m a Charlotte-based photographer, and I adore working with parents to plan dreamy photo sessions. I specialize in maternity and newborn pictures as well as graduation portraits. If you’ve been looking for a way to remember this wonderful stage in life, I’d love to connect and tell you a bit more about my sessions. Contact me today to get the conversation started!