Autumn Adventures

Sure, Central Florida doesn’t experience much in the way of red, yellow and orange autumn foliage, but that doesn’t mean we don’t love all things fall. We just celebrate Florida style. If pumpkin spice, sweater (and flip flop) weather and pumpkin patches are your jam, add the following festivals and events to your fall to-do list. 

Written & Compiled by Karin Fabry-Cushenbery

Two little boys having fun in a pumpkin patch

Peanut Patch & Corn Maze

Through October 28

Fall activities include hayrides, a great corn maze, a barrel train, horse shoes, corn hole, tube slide, a haunted house, a kids’ play area, campfires and food booths. Hours are Fridays, 5-11pm, and Saturdays, 3-11pm. If you and the little ones are feeling brave, the haunted attractions begin at dark. The farm is located at 8656 SW 75th Street in Gainesville. Admission is $20 for adults, $12 for ages 3-11 and free for kids under 3—cash only.

Crossroads Farm and Apiary Fall Festival and Corn Maze

Through October 29

Spend the day on the farm enjoying a huge array of fall fun, including hay and train rides, a pumpkin patch, bounce pad, farm animals, face painting and games, a playground, corn bin and hay bale climbing. While there, check out the beekeeping encounter. Hours are Saturdays, 10am-7pm, and Sundays, 2-7pm. Cost is $10 for ages 3 and up. The farm is located at 3831 NW 156th Avenue in Gainesville.

Amber Brooke Farms Fall Festival

Through October 29

Amber Brooke Farms Fall Festival includes a pumpkin patch, crop maze, a petting zoo, fall photo ops, U-pick sunflowers, vegetables and zinnias, live entertainment and pumpkin painting. On weekends, once you’ve worked up an appetite, check out the food trucks. The event will also include live music on Saturdays and Sundays, 10am-7pm. The farm will be open Fridays through Sundays, and the Pumpkin Destruction Day will take place November 5. The farm is cashless, so bring your card.

Mayhem Ranch Fall Festival

Through October 29

The list of fall festivities at the ranch is long and includes crop mazes, a mini cow town, pig races, live music, a produce market and country store, a petting farm, an African animal experience, lasso lane, pony rides and gem mining. Admission to the festival is $15 for those ages 3 and up. A few of the events cost a bit extra, so have a little cash on hand. New this year, guests will have the opportunity to pick and purchase their own pumpkin at the ranch. On Saturdays and Sundays the event will run from 11am-7pm with the last admission taking place at 6pm. Mayhem Ranch is located at 17830 SE 40th Street in Morriston.

Scott’s Maze Adventures

Through November 26

Great Scott Farms (formerly Scott’s Maze Adventures) offers way more than just your basic fall corn mazes. Check out the tree maze, rope maze, labrynth and mist maze. Other farm activities include the super slide, gem mining, jumping pillow, kids’ zip line and a castle playground and games. The Country Café and food trucks are also on-site. On the weekends, enjoy $4 hayrides on the Sweet Corn Express. Scott’s Country Market will be open and selling jams, jellies, produce and sauces. Tickets at the gate, if available, are $18. The event takes place Saturdays and Sundays, 10am-5pm. 

Coon Hollo Fall Festival 

October 6-November 5

This year’s Coon Hollo activities include pony rides, archery, the crop maze, pig races, a hayride to feed the cows, putt-putt golf, the 50-foot sack slide, hay fort, corn crib, old-fashioned games and farm animals. More than 15 activities are included with admission. While at the farm, check out Nana’s Bake Shop, the Country Store, the Feed Trough Concessions, a pre-picked pumpkin patch and Jersey’s Creamery Homemade Ice Cream. The farm will be open on Fridays from 4-7pm, Saturdays from 10am-7pm and Sundays from 12-7pm.

Marion County Parks & Recreation’s 4th Annual Carnival

October 7

Join Marion County Parks & Recreation for an evening of fall family fun with games, candy, music, food trucks and giveaways! From 5-9pm there will be family-friendly entertainment and costume contests. Bring a non-perishable goods donation for Bring the Harvest Home to be entered for your chance to win a prize. The event will take place at the Southeastern Livestock Pavilion.

Not-So-Spooky Fall Festival

October 7

Marion Therapeutic Riding Association fall festival will feature a holiday market, vendors and a car show,  as well as hayrides with a scavenger hunt, trick-or-treating stations, prize drawings, face painting and mask-making stations, and games.

50th Annual Autumn Art Festival

October 7-8

This festival, hosted by the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce, features over 180 Florida artists from across a variety of artistic mediums and offers live entertainment, food vendors, a beer garden and children’s activities. The festivals takes place in Winter Park’s Central Park from 9am-5pm each day.

Brown & Brown Farms’ Corn Maze & Fall Extravaganza

October 7-November 5

Central Florida’s largest corn maze promises not to disapoint this season! This 12-acre maze leads you through twists and turns, plus has you solving puzzles along the way. New this year are events like Dazed in the Maze on October 14-15, where guests 21 and up will have to search out samples from local breweries and wineries, plus Flashlight Fridays where you’re encouraged to bring your own flashlight to navigate the maze after dark. Uncle Willy’s Twilight Express will take place select Friday and Saturday nights from 7-10pm. October 22 will feature a free large craft fair. And we haven’t even mentioned all the other fall fun! Tickets are $14.95 each and can be purchased through their website. Brown & Brown Farms is located on US 301 in Oxford. or 

Ocala Pumpkin Patch

October 13-31

Pumpkins of all shapes, colors and sizes will be available for purchase at First United Methodist Church. All proceeds from the event will benefit the Tuesday Ministries Outreach at the church. There will also be a photo booth and fun evening events on certain nights. The patch will be open from 4-7pm Monday through Friday, 10am-8pm Saturdays and 12-8pm Sundays. For updated information, visit the event’s Facebook page.  

Crystal River Scarecrow Festival

October 14

This annual fall kick-off event will run from 10am-5pm and will include vendors, food, costumes, games and live music. There will also be plenty of fall photo ops.

Cedar Lakes Woods and Gardens Fall Festival 2023

October 14

This year’s fall festival will include beautiful foliage walks, food vendors, a kids’ corner complete with games and scavenger hunts, and an arts and crafts market. The fun takes place from 9:30am-5pm at 4990 NE 180th Avenue in Williston. Tickets are $12 for adults, $7 for kids ages 6 to 13 and free for kids under 5.

McIntosh 1890s Fall Festival

October 14

This much-anticipated annual event will include arts, crafts, antiques, homemade treats and gifts, gardening goods and artisan jewelry. The festival, which takes place along the streets of historic McIntosh, is free to attend, and there will be a variety of food vendors on hand. All festival parking will be on the west side of US Hwy 441. In addition to shopping, live entertainment in Van Ness Park will take place from 8am-4pm. There will also be booths specializing in children’s fun and activities, and non-profit organizations will have booths set up to introduce visitors to their organizations.

Craft Fair at Circle Square Cultural Center

October 14

Visit the Circle Square Cultural Center between 10am and 3pm to shop over 100 arts and crafts vendors in the center, plus additional crafters at the Town Square at Circle Square Commons. Live entertainment will be provided by Fred Campbell, and Mr. B’s Scoop Ice Cream Shop will be on hand with frozen treats. Find more information on Facebook. 

Bryer Patch Pumpkin Festival

October 14-15

The first annual pumpkin festival will include hayrides, farm animal petting and feeding opportunities, a crop maze, fall activities and games, a pre-picked pumpkin patch, plus the U-pick pumpkin, sunflower, zinnia and gourd patches. The event will also include plenty of food and non-food vendors. Admission is $12 per person for ages 3 and up. The festival will take place from 10am-6pm both days. The Bryer Patch is located at 5700 SW 250th Street in Newberry. For more details, find the farm on social media. 

Autumn Gift Market

October 20-21

This unique shopping event will showcase a variety of merchants from around the Southeast region. You’ll find jewelry, clothing, handcrafted items, home décor and gourmet food—something for everyone on your upcoming gift-giving list. The event runs from 6-9pm on Friday and Saturday from 10am-4pm. 

Frank Deluca YMCA Fall Festival

October 21

Head to the Frank Deluca YMCA for a fun-filled evening at the center’s Fall Festival, featuring a live band, games and lots of candy. This event is open to the community and starts at 6pm.

Florida Bat Festival

October 21

The Florida Bat Festival at Lubee Bat Conservancy is one you won’t want to miss. This annual celebration includes great activities, live entertainment, plenty of vendors, food and lots of info on one of the world’s most misunderstood creatures—the bat. Gates open at 10am, and admission is $10 for ages 13 and up, $5 for kids ages 5-12 and free for kids under 5. Tickets to the festival’s Beer Garden are $30 for those ages 21 and up.

Harvest Hoedown Market

October 22

The Harvest Hoedown Market at the Ocala Downtown Market will take place from 12-4pm. Enjoy shopping with multiple vendors and food trucks. There will be entertainment and activities for children. The Ocala Downtown Market is always pet and kid friendly! This event is sponsored by AdventHealth Ocala.

It’s Fall Ya’ll Festival

October 22

This fall festival takes place at Silver Springs State Park and features fall crafts, food vendors and plenty of family fun. Admission is $2, and the event takes place from 11am-6pm. Find the event on Facebook.

Sholom Park HAPI Harvest Day

October 28

This event will include live musical entertainment, trick-or-treating stations for the little ones, food trucks, plus interactive fall and Halloween fun. Event parking will be $5, including golf carts. Festivalgoers are invited to wear a costume and visit the interactive and educational trick-or-treat activity stations hosted by local organizations and groups. Dance the day away at the Monster Mash Dance Party, and take in a number of live entertainment performances. While meandering through the park, be on the lookout, both high and low, for the painted pumpkins!

Ocala Arts Festival

October 28-29

Fine Arts For Ocala’s 56th annual Ocala Arts Festival features more than 150 artists displaying their works throughout downtown Ocala. The event also offers live entertainment, student art and performers, and food trucks. The festival will take place 10am-5pm both Saturday and Sunday. 

Mount Dora Craft Fair

October 28-29

Located on the streets of historic downtown Mount Dora, this craft fair features more than 400 of the best exhibitors from throughout the country. The event will also include plenty of festival food favorites, live music, beer and wine tastings, and a free kids’ zone. The event was ranked the No. 1 all-time favorite classic/contemporary craft festival in America by Sunshine Artists Magazine in 2021.

Micanopy Fall Festival

October 28-29

More than 200 local and regional artists, crafters and musicians show off their talents and their wares at this 47th annual event. The event will run Saturday, 9am-5pm, and Sunday, 9am-4pm.

Spanish Springs Art and Craft Festival 

November 4-5

Shop a variety of vendors, from handcrafted products and leather goods to paintings and photography. The event will include commercial vendors, crafts, food on-site and more. The festival runs from 10am-5pm, and admission is free. The festival will be located throughout the Spanish Springs town square. 

Ocali Country Days

November 11-12

The Ocali Country Days festival takes place on the second weekend of November each year at the Silver River Museum & Environmental Education Center. This beloved event honors and celebrates the pioneer spirit of old Florida with live entertainment, food, vendors and “old time” craft demonstrations. Mingle and interact with skilled crafters to learn about blacksmithing, making sugar cane syrup, cooking over an open hearth, log cabins, traditional Seminole cooking and arts, pioneer cattle and horses, spinning, weaving and quilting. The event will run from 9am-4pm both days, and admission is $8 per person. Children 5 and under are free.

Alachua Main Street Harvest Festival

November 12

This event on Main Street in Gainesville will include food, children’s activities, live music, crafts and gift vendors. Proceeds will benefit scholarships for students at Santa Fe College. The festival takes place from 11am-5pm.

Downtown Festival & Art Show

November 18-19

It’s been described as the largest free celebration of art and culture in North Central Florida, and this year’s Downtown Festival & Art Show will showcase more than 100 artists throughout the streets of downtown Gainesville around Bo Diddley Plaza. Artists will represent a huge variety of mediums, including ceramics and painting to wood and metal creations. At the Imagination Station, kids can get creative and take part in hands-on art activities. The event will also include live entertainment, performing artists and culinary experiences.