It’s harvest season: Fall festivals for families

East Passyunk's 2nd Annual Fall Festival + Spooky Saturday, Octo
Guests go trick or treating at the East Passyunk 2nd Annual Fall Festival and Spooky Saturday, on Saturday, October 26, 2013. (HughE Dillon/

Grab your brood and hit the town! The last two weekends before Halloween are filled to the brim with fall festivities for fun-seekers of all ages.

The ultimate farm-to-city event closes down Filbert Street from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. with hay rides, a pumpkin patch, tractors and eats from Reading Terminal Market (12th and Filbert Streets) during their Harvest Fall Festival on Saturday, Oct. 18.

Don’t feed the animals: Trick or treat around the Philadelphia Zoo (3400 W. Girard Ave.) on Saturday, Oct. 18Sunday, Oct. 19, Saturday, Oct. 25 and Sunday, Oct. 26 for Boo at the Zoo. Other wild activities include a scavenger hunt, costume parade and pumpkin patch, running from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. all weekend.

We’re seeing orange. Pumpkin pickin’, carvin’ and catapaultin’ go down at Pumpkin Days at Tyler Arboretum (515 Painter Rd., Media) on Saturday, Oct. 18 and Sunday, Oct. 19. Get there between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. to witness all the fun.

At the Wagner Free Institute of Science (1700 W. Montgomery Ave.) animals wear costumes. Well, “costumes” is a broad term. These critters, on display from the Elmwood Park Zoo, blend into their surroundings to survive. You, on the other hand, may come all dolled up on Saturday, Oct. 18. The activity runs from noon to 4 p.m.

I hope you’re not sick of these yet: Dilworth Park’s Oktoberfest held from noon til 6 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 18 features Rosa Blanca-hosted beer garden, science demos from the Franklin Institute, art activities courtesy of Mural Arts, and live entertainment from Making Time DJs, Drgn King, Norwegian Arms and Philadelphia School of Circus Arts.

Feed lambs! Tour a farm! Cow Plop Bingo! Apple cider donuts! Pie contest! Weavers Way at Saul High School (7100 Henry Ave.)! Saturday, Oct. 18! 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.!

Remember this summer’s Franklin Square (200 N. 6th St.) Food Truck Festivus? This is the same, but in October. On Saturday, Oct. 18, from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., the park’ll be lined with food truck favorites like Jerry’s Kitchen, Dadz Grilled Cheez, Mamas Meatballs, Seoulful Philly, Oink and Moo BQ, The Cow and the Curd and What’s In This? and a beer garden hosted by Old Eagle Tavern.

Family-friendly programming on land — pumpkin carving, cooking workshops — and on water — family canoeing, youth fishing derby — comes to Bartram’s Garden (54th Street and Lindbergh Boulevard) on Sunday, Oct. 19 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Make murals, see murals on Sunday, Oct. 19. The Queen Village Art Center (514 Bainbridge St.) also holds trolley tours visiting Mural Arts murals, with demos and activities taking place back at home base from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Swing your partner round and round on Friday, Oct. 24 for the final installment of Fleisher Art Memorial’s (719 Catherine St.) Friday Night Bites series. This Harvest Hoedown, running from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., features Bluegrass band The Citywide Specials and food from the Flying Deutschman.

Hike along a jack-o'-lantern-lined wooded trail that leads to a hay-filled vessel taking you and fellow trekkers to a good ol’-fashioned campfire with s’mores and pumpkin painting at 6 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 24 and Saturday, Oct. 25. The Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education (8480 Hagy’s Mill Rd.) hosts Halloween Hikes and Hayrides on each night.

Trunk or treat (you know — grabbing candy from trunks) at the Garden State Discovery Museum’s (2040 Springdale Rd., Cherry Hill) Halloween HOOTenanny. The museum will also highlight themed exhibits, crafts and a dance off from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 24.

Trick or treat down Main Street Manayunk, treat the kids to a family movie night (Friday, Oct. 24 at 6:30 p.m.), and compete in a zombie “Thriller” dance-off and other wholesome festive activities on Halloweekend in Manayunk on Saturday, Oct. 25. The day’s activities begin at 8 a.m. at various locations throughout the neighborhood.

Kids (and dogs!) can give their costumes a test run with a costume contest and trick-or-treating down East Passyunk on Saturday, Oct. 25 during Fall Fest and Spooky Saturday. For the grown ups: crafters, food and drink from Fond, Mamma Mia Ristorante, Ms Goody Cupcake, The Tot Cart and others. The entertainment is held at the Singing Fountain (Tasker Street and East Passyunk Avenue) from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.  

The artsy types do Halloween on Sunday, Oct. 26. From 3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m., make glow-in-the-dark ghost lanterns, specimen globes and pop-up books at the Fairmount Art Center (2501 Olive St.). The Fairmount Halloween Parade leaves at 5 p.m. from 25th Street.