Fall is officially here and there are plenty of ways to celebrate besides driving to your nearest coffee shop and ordering something pumpkin flavored. Take advantage of some of these fun activities on your next day off this fall.
Last Fling Pumpkin Sling
On Oct. 20 and 21, Millbrook Farm located in Harmony Township will hold its annual pumpkin slinging contest. During the pumpkin sling, teams test out their homemade catapults to see how far they can launch a pumpkin. All are welcome to come out and watch the pumpkin slings, which take place three times over the course of the day, the starting at 11 a.m. Kids can participate in their own “Mini Sling” beginning at noon. Admission is $6 for adults and $4 for children.
The contest is not the only activity offered during the weekend. In between the contestants’ pumpkin slings, you can check out the vendors, do arts and crafts and go on one of the many October Vistas Tours, which includes scenic tours of Warren County and Wyckoff’s Christmas Tree Farm. There are also live bands playing sporadically throughout the day, a hot air balloon launch and sand sculpture created by Matt Long from Travel Channel’s “Sand Masters.” For more information and the official schedule, go to www.pumpkinsling.com.
If you’re more interested in picking pumpkins rather than launching them, Secor Farms in Mahwah is opened until the end of October. You can pick pumpkins, gourds, Indian corn and jack-be-little pumpkins. This time of year also offers mums in full bloom, and Secor Farms has a large selection. Also available is a hayride which begins on Sept. 29. The ride costs $2 and is open from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays and 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on weekends. For more information go to www.secorfarms.com
Nightmares Haunted Attraction
Located in Passaic, Nightmares offers numerous Halloween-themed attractions that are promised to give you a scare. Nightmares is open Friday through Sunday from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. beginning in October and opens again on Halloween from 8 p.m. until midnight.
This year, three separate attractions are available beginning with Brighton Asylum. It is an indoor, walk-through haunted house based on stories of mistreated patients of a mental institution who continue to haunt the complex. Second is Zombie Apocalypse Doomsday:2012. This attraction is held outdoors and is based on the story of evacuating those who have escaped infections of the zombie apocalypse. Guests start on a hayride, and finish by walking through “infested lands.” Tickets for both cost $25 or $35 if you want to skip the line.
The last attraction is The Horror Museum. The museum holds props and costumes from well known horror movies. It is the only one of its kind, and everything inside the museum was actually used in a movie. Props come from films including “Hostel 2,” “Scream 4,” “Friday the 13th” (2009) and “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” (2006). For more details, go to www.night-mares.com.
Fright Fest Six Flags Great Adventure
Every year, beginning at the end of September through the end of October, Six Flags Great Adventure transforms its entire park into a Halloween destination. The park, located in Jackson, is open Friday through Sunday during this special time of year. While traveling through the park to ride all of your favorite roller coasters, you encounter “fearful frights” including zombie pirates, creepy clowns, men with chainsaws and plenty of other monster like characters who are roam around. Other attractions include haunted houses, Halloween themed parades and musical performances. Tickets start at $42.99. For more information go to http://frightfest.sixflags.com/great adventure.