When you think of Halloween, what comes to mind? Maybe images of paper ghosts hanging out of empty trees, leaves blowing spookily down a dark path or carved pumpkins sitting ominously on the doorstep illuminated by candles to greet trick-or-treaters. Maybe you are ready to break out the candy corn and your favorite treats for the seasonal viewing of Halloween movies, like “Hocus Pocus” and “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.” Choosing the perfect costume for an upcoming party or trick-or-treating adventure is likely top of mind for many as a crisp autumn breeze starts to invade the atmosphere, announcing the approach of colder months to come.
Frisco and the surrounding area is home to a variety of spooky Halloween events and attractions, making it easy for parents and families to find something frighteningly fun to do in celebration of this time of year. Whether you are looking for thrills or simply want to visit a nearby pumpkin patch to get photos with a beautiful fall landscape in the background, there is a little something for everyone to take part in … scaredy-cats or not!
Storybook Ranch’s Pumpkin Patch, which is open through November 1, is an annual charity fundraiser. Not only can families choose their favorite pumpkins out of the large and colorful selection to take home and carve, but guests can also explore a hay maze, take pony rides, check out a petting zoo, jump in the bounce houses and wander through the 1800s western town. Storybook Ranch is located at 3701 South Custer Road in McKinney. You cannot miss the entrance, as a large pumpkin head generally sits next to the road, enticing visitors to check out the ranch and all the fall fun just waiting to be explored behind the gate. Get more information at storybookranch.org.
Through October 31, Frisco’s Grace Avenue United Methodist Church, located at 3521 Main Street, will host its 15th annual Pumpkins on the Prairie event, which began in 2002 as a mission to provide a month of festivities for the community. There will be more than enough photo opportunities, face painting, bounce houses and hayrides will be in motion for the whole family. Check out graceavenue.org/
pumpkins-on-the-prairie for details on some of the activities that are planned around the pumpkin patch. During weekends, be sure you check out the Great Pumpkin Launcher!
Take a scenic country drive! The Big Orange Pumpkin Farm at Preston Trail Farms, started by the Kimbrell family in 1997, will be open through November 21. Adults and children can experience pumpkins growing right on the vine and meet more than 50 farm animals. Take in the landscape from a hayride! With a six-foot-high corn maze set along the historic Shawnee Trail, the sights simply cannot be beat. Preston Trail Farms is located at 15102 TX-289, in Gunter. To plan your visit go to prestontrailfarms.com.
Autumn at the Dallas Arboretum is an annual tradition for many families that call North Texas home. From now until November 21, the Dallas Arboretum, located at 8525 Garland Road, will present a spectacular scene with more than 4,500 of fall’s favorite chrysanthemums, along with 150,000 stunning fall plants. The internationally-acclaimed Pumpkin Village features more than 90,000 pumpkins, squash and gourds. This year’s themed event, “The Adventures in Neverland,” features well-known scenes from Peter and Wendy. Enjoy an autumn-themed tea or pack a picnic to enjoy next to White Rock Lake.
Whatever you do, just do not forget your camera! You have never seen so many delightful fall colors in one place! Check out dallasarboretum.org for more information.
Enter if You Dare
With a special Halloween show taking place until October 31, Dark Hour Haunted House, located at 701 Taylor Drive, in Plano, uses sets, technology and professional actors to thoroughly terrify visitors who dare to venture through the haunted attraction. Your reality will be shattered as you live your worst nightmares throughout the unique attraction. From the realistic cemetery at Coven Manor to decaying dark details inside, your heart rate is guaranteed to accelerate during your adventure. In addition to Halloween events, there are other holiday-themed shows that take place throughout the year. Be sure to check out the event calendar and order tickets at darkhourhauntedhouse.com.
Local Halloween Events
One of Frisco’s annual traditions is trick or treating at Fire Safety Town, at the Central Fire Station, right on Gary Burns Drive. This year’s event will take place on October 26, from 6-9 p.m. The kids’ community event is free, but food will be available for purchase while standing in line. Visitors are invited to come in costume and trick-or-treat in the little town. Find out more at friscofire.com.
This year’s fashion-forward Friscovania “Through the Decades” event will take place at Toyota Stadium on October 27, from 3-8 p.m., and will benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Collin County. Proceeds from the annual event go to deserving organizations in the community and locals get to enjoy a day filled with spooktacular fun. Families can enjoy live music, a haunted carnival for kids, food trucks, a costume contest, virtual reality, a runway show and so much more! Friscovania 2018 marks the third year for this community event and partnership with FC Dallas. Tickets are $15, parking is free and children 2 years old and younger get in free. Do not forget to wear your costume! Get your tickets and more details about this annual event at friscovania.com.
Trick or Treating at the Farm at the Heritage Farmstead Museum, located at 1900 West 15th Street, in Plano, will take place on October 26. Put on your costume and go trick or treating around the farm, feed the chickens, take a tractor ride, make a craft and more. This event is for kids ages 1-9. You can order tickets or get more information about this event at heritagefarmstead.org.
On October 27, kick start the McKinney Fall Festival at TUPPS Brewery, located at 721 Anderson Street, with the Monster Dash 5K. Make sure you wear your costume for a chance at prizes for the most creative and spooky looks. The free festival is great fun for local families. There will be food, a pumpkin patch, petting zoo, kids’ activities, costume contests, more than 60 boutiques and shops and of course plenty of delicious cold TUPPS beer!
This fall, check out a haunted house, trick or treat with your kids or visit a pumpkin patch to hand-pick the perfect jack-o-lantern for your doorstep. Explore some new events in North Texas and, while you are at it, eat, drink and be scary!
Christine Perrenot is the editor of Frisco STYLE Magazine and an outdoor enthusiast who loves creative writing and going on weekend getaways.