A Guide to Central Ohio Halloween Activities for the Family

Halloween in Central Ohio is unlike Halloween in any other part of the country. The trees are ablaze in a wash of color, the hoot owls serenade you and the night air is especially crisp. Every child begins to wonder what Halloween will bring.
The Fairfield County area is an inviting place to experience the Halloween holiday. From camping to trick or treating to a luminescent display, Fairfield County is the ultimate family Halloween spot.

The Halloween season begins soon after the first day of fall. People begin to decorate their homes and Mother Nature begins to decorate the forest and fields with beautiful foliage, bright red apples and dew crystal covered spider webs. All of this leads up to the first big event of the season, The Annual Circleville Pumpkin Show. Located just across the Fairfield/Pickaway County line, The Circleville Pumpkin Show is held the third week of every October. The event is celebrating it’s 150th birthday in 2006. Along Circleville’s downtown streets, one can find pumpkin flavored edibles in every form imaginable, and even some best left unthought of! There are beauty contests, parades, pumpkin recipe cooking contests, and more rides and vendors then the country fair. Of course, there’s always the contest for the biggest pumpkin grown! No Halloween season can be considered complete without a trip to Circleville to see the “big show.” It’s also a great place to pick out your pumpkin!
As pumpkins are a big part of the Halloween tradition, it is worth making a trip to Sharp’s Farm. You can pick your own pumpkins or choose from those already picked. They come in a variety of sizes, including miniature pumpkins and pie pumpkins. There are gourds, straw bales and corn stalks for your decorating needs. No stop to the pumpkin patch is complete without a trip through the corn maze! Sharps offers both a corn maze and a straw bale maze for your family’s enjoyment. Sharps also provides snacks, refreshments, a picnic area and the all important restrooms! Sharps is located at 7129 Old Logan Road in Sugar Grove, Ohio. On the last two Saturdays in October the patch and maze are open until 11:00 pm for “Saturday Night Flashlights.” Call (740) 215-8384 for hours and more information.

The Robert K. Fox Family YMCA holds an annual Halloween Carnival. The Family Y is located on West Sixth Street in Lancaster, just off of Memorial Drive. There are contests and prizes for best and most original costumes, games and refreshments.

Each year Alley Park has The Pumpkin Hike. The trail is decorated in hundreds of uniquely carved Jack-O-Lanterns and luminaries. There is no price for admission. Alley Park is located at 2805 Old Logan Road in Lancaster. In 2006, the hike is scheduled for October 21, from 6:30-8:30, weather permitting.

For those wishing to brave the fall chill, Old Man’s Cave Campground hosts it’s annual Halloween Camp Out. They offer
traditional hay rides, pumpkin carving, trick or treating and costume and campsite judging. There is also a “spooky” night time hike led by forest rangers, a campfire gathering and enough food for everyone. Registration is required. You can contact Old Man’s Cave Campground at (740) 385-6165. Regular camping fees do apply.

Each community holds its own trick or treat night. These are almost always held on a Thursday night before Halloween and begin around 5:00 pm, ending before dark. The River Valley Mall has consistently held a trick or treat within it’s doors, the stores handing out candy, certificates and other treats in a safer environment. Community trick or treats are always listed in The Lancaster Eagle Gazette and on most of the Columbus based news stations.

For a family friendly Halloween, steeped in tradition, Fairfield County has much to offer. Most of the activities I have shared are at low or no cost, providing a relatively stress free time for Moms and Dads. So, consider yourself welcome. We’ll be waiting for you.

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