Fall Harvest Festivals, Pumpkin Patches, Corn Mazes and Hayrides Right Here in New York City 2013
September 19, 2013

by Mommy Poppins

AMC's Kids Outdoors New York City and Mommy Poppins New York City continue our monthly series of guest blog posts on getting the most out of NYC as a family. Mommy Poppins is a free, online guide written by local parents for families looking for the best things to do, see, read, eat, learn, and play in and around the city.

Last week we told you about a bunch of fabulous fall festivals like the New York Hall of Science's Maker Faire and the Medieval Festival in Fort Tryon Park. Today we're focusing specifically on harvest celebrations and other seasonal fun like pumpkin patches, corn mazes and hayrides.

While there are plenty of wonderful festivals outside the city on Long Island and in New Jersey, you can enjoy an authentic harvest experience right here in New York City, too. So skip the car rental and hit these harvest spots and fall fetes in the five boroughs, all accessible via the MTA.

Corn Maze in NYC

The Amazing Maize MazeFloral Park
Weekends and Columbus Day: Saturday, September 21-Sunday, October 27 11am-4:30pm
Queens County Farm Museum, 73-50 Little Neck Parkway
$9 for adults, $5 for children ages 4-11
You need a lot of room for a good corn maze so it's no surprise that the only one in NYC is located on the grounds of the Queens County Farm Museum. I did this maze with my son when he was just four-years-old and I kept waiting to hear him whine, "Carry me!" But we had so much fun that complaint never came. Before you embark on your adventure, staff explain how to find hidden clues and solve tricky puzzles that will help you successfully navigate this three-acre maze. If you've got older kids who enjoy a challenge, try doing it by flashlight: On Saturdays, October 5 and 12, the corn maze stays open until 9pm. Note: On Sunday, October 27 and you can also enjoy the farm's annual Children's Fall Festival featuring rides, bouncy houses, a petting zoo, a haunted house and more for $5 extra.

Pumpkin Patches in NYC

Historic Richmond Town Pumpkin PatchStaten Island
Every weekend in October and Columbus Day 11am-4pm
Decker Farm, 435 Richmond Hill Road
$5 per person, $16 for a family of four plus cost of pumpkins. Prices are based on weight.
This 19th-century farm stand is part of NYC's only living history museum, Historic Richmond Town. We've never been and have heard mixed things about the experience with complaints about the admission fee and an unreliable shuttle bus from the parking lot. So call ahead to confirm times!

Pumpkin PatchFloral Park
Every weekend in October 11am-4:30pm
Queens County Farm Museum, 73-50 Little Neck Parkway
Pumpkin prices are based on weight
Admission to NYC's only historic working farm is always free (unless there's a special event like the aforementioned Children's Fall Festival on Sunday, October 27). Families can wander through the fields to find the perfect pumpkin to take home.

The Haunted Pumpkin Gardenthe Bronx
Saturday, September 21-Thursday, October 31 10am-6pm
New York Botanic Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard
Free with All-Garden Pass: $20-$25 for adults, $8-$10 for children ages 2-12.
Nighttime Adventures: $20 per person.
Now in its third year, the NYBG's Halloween-themed exhibit is one of my family's favorite fall destinations. While you can't pick pumpkins here, you can marvel at more than 500 jack-o'-lanterns elaborately carved and sculpted into spiders, scarecrows, bats, snakes and other scary sights. There are also cool kids' activities including a daily costume parade, plus giant pumpkin carving demosand special nighttime hours in case you want to explore the installation by flashlight.

NYC Harvest Festivals and Fall Fairs

Breukelen Country FairCanarsie
Saturday, September 21 1-5pm
Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum, 5816 Clarendon Road near East 58th Street
$5 for adults,$3 for children ages 3-9
Celebrate Brooklyn's rich agricultural past at this historic institution dedicated to early life in NYC. Live music, pony rides, food cooked in a fire pit, cider pressing, and old-time crafts and games are all on tap.

Harvest DayProspect Lefferts Gardens
Sunday, September 22 1-4pm
Lefferts Historic House, Prospect Park Children's Corner inside the Willink entrance at the intersection of Ocean and Flatbush Avenues, and Empire Boulevard
Suggested donation of $3 per person
Help dig up potatoes, then cook and sample the harvest, and participate in potato sack races and other retro games.

Oktoberfest and Crafts FairSunnyside
Saturday, October 5 noon-5pm
Sunnyside Gardens Park, 48-21 39th Avenue between 48th and Heiser Streets
Free admission but there are fees for certain activities
This lovely park (which is usually for members only) opens its doors to the public with a pumpkin patch and decorating for the kids, German food, live music and a fair featuring handcrafted items for sale.

Greenbelt Pumpkin FestivalStaten Island
Saturday, October 12 noon-4pm
Carousel for All Children, Willowbrook Park in the Greenbelt on Eton Place
Free admission but there are fees for certain activities
Head to Willowbrook Park in Staten Island's Greenbelt for a festive day of face painting, pumpkin picking, carousel riding, puppet shows and crafts.

Harvest Festival at Brooklyn Bridge ParkBrooklyn Heights
Saturday, October 19 10:30am-1pm
Pier 6, Brooklyn Bridge Park
Head to Pier 6 to pick a pumpkin and enjoy arts and crafts, storytelling, face painting and live tunes.

Fall Kids' FestFlatiron
Saturday, October 19 11am-2pm
Madison Square Park, 23rd Street at Madison Avenue
Come in costume (or trade an old one for a new-to-you outfit at the costume swap) to participate in one of the two parades led by performers from the Big Apple Circus, then hit the pumpkin patch to pick the perfect jack-o'-lantern. Other festivities include live music from the Little Rockers Band and Songs for Seeds, tricks by the Amazing Max, games, arts and crafts, face painting and snacks. Be sure to arrive early as it gets mobbed fast.

Children's Harvest FestivalGreenwich Village
Saturday, October 19 11am-2pm
Jefferson Market Garden, Greenwich Avenue between Sixth Avenue and West 10th Street
Not only can kids decorate a mini pumpkin at this annual autumn fest, they can also roll around in freshly raked leaves and big piles of hay.

Fall Harvest Festival Forest Hills
Saturday, October 19 noon-3pm
Victory Field in Forest Park, Woodhaven Boulevard and Myrtle Avenue
This shindig features pumpkins to pick, kiddie games, live entertainment and other seasonal fun.

Harvest Fest and Pumpkin PatchFlushing
Sunday, October 20 11am-6pm
Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main Street at Dahlia Avenue
Free with admission: $4 for adults, $2 for children ages 3-12; pumpkins cost $5 each and there are additional fees for certain activities
Enjoy birding walks, spinning and cider-pressing demos, a pumpkin patch, games, pony rides and face painting.

Central Park Pumpkin FestivalUpper East Side
Saturday, October 26 11am-3pm
Naumburg Bandshell, Central Park 72nd Street and Fifth Avenue
Expect crowds at this super-popular annual fete hosted by the NYC Parks Department. The centerpiece is a huge sugar pumpkin patch in the middle of Central Park (arrive early before they're all snatched up) plus a scary haunted house, a marionette show, a slew of live entertainment, arts and crafts, a live Quidditch match and pumpkin decorating.

King Manor Museum Fall FestivalJamaica
Saturday, October 26 noon-4pm
150-03 Jamaica Avenue at 150th Street
Celebrate harvest season by sampling some culinary delights from NYC's days of yore like Dutch eats cooked over a fire pit. Fall crafts and other seasonal activities will also be on tap.

Children's Fall FestivalFloral Park
Sunday, October 27 11am-4pm
Queens County Farm Museum, 73-50 Little Neck Parkway
$5 admission but there are additional fees for certain activities
One of my family's personal favorites, this massive bash features traditional games like sack races and trinkets-in-the-haystack, live music, bouncy houses, a haunted house, pony rides and a petting zoo. Families are encouraged to attend in costume, and this is the perfect day to hit the farm's Amazing Maize Maze and pumpkin patch.

Looking to pick apples and pumpkins right off the trees and vines? Check out our Pick Your Own Guide for the best tri-state area farms.

This article originally appeared on Mommy Poppins in September 2013.


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