The end of summer is made easier with the arrival of fall and all the new fun it brings in West Michigan. Take advantage of these activities and get outside with friends and family at one or all of these great spots. Remember your masks, walking shoes, and camera for a great day of fall memories.

Here are seven fun ways to experience fall with your family:

A tractor pulled hayride at Post Family Farm.

Hayrides are still available this season, with extra social distancing and sanitization precautions.

Photo Credit: Brian Craig for Experience Grand Rapids


Hayrides 

Many cider mills and farms offer either horse or tractor drawn hayrides that are fun for all ages. Heidi’s Farmstand & Bakery, open Monday to Friday: 6:30 AM - 6 PM and Saturday: 7 AM - 5 PM, offers rides on the weekends for the family to enjoy. Seating is every other row and the wagons are sanitized after every ride for your safety. Crane Orchards, open 10 AM - 6 PM 7 days a week, is another great choice for a fun weekend hayride. Bring your mask and enjoy the scenery! 

Corn Mazes

If you're looking to get lost, find yourself a corn maze. Corn mazes range from easy to difficult and operate both during the daytime and after dusk. Many also offer fun extras along the way. Heidi's Farmstand & Bakery offers two different mazes for different challenge levels. To help with social distancing, the paths this year are extra wide and tickets are limited each hour. Be sure to purchase your tickets ahead of time if you plan to visit on a weekend.

Schwallier's Country Basket, open Monday to Friday: 7 AM - 6 PM and Saturday and Sunday 9 AM - 6 PM, features a different theme every year. Head on out and enjoy the Wild West while you navigate your way out of the maze.

The 10-acre corn maze at Fruit Ridge Hayrides, open Fridays in October 5 - 9 PM, Saturday: 10 AM - 9 PM, and Sunday: 10 AM - 6 PM,  features a “Michigan Swamp Adventure” theme this year for your puzzle-solving pleasure. After you solve the maze, be sure to stop in for some of their award-winning cider. Also note, most mazes close at least an hour before the farm does. Make sure you leave enough time for all the fun! Hint: You can bring a jogging stroller or baby carrier through most mazes.

Pumpkins at Post Family Farm.

There's no shortage of pumpkin patches around Grand Rapids.

Photo Credit: Brian Craig for Experience Grand Rapids


Pumpkin Patches 

Why buy a pumpkin at your local grocery when you can pick your own perfect pumpkin straight from the patch? At Bethke Farms, open Monday to Thursday: 4 - 7 PM and Friday to Sunday: 10 AM - 7 PM, you can take a walk through the woods, hit the corn maze, and then return to pick out your pumpkin. Or visit Crane Orchards to find your carving squash of choice!

A box of donuts at Post Family Farm.

West Michigan is full of donuts and cider in the fall.

Photo Credit: Brian Craig for Experience Grand Rapids


Donuts and Cider 

If sweet treats are what you're after, you are in luck! West Michigan in the fall is full of donuts and cider this time of year. Post Family Farm, open Monday to Thursday: noon - 7 PM, Friday: noon- 6, and Saturday: 10 AM - 6 PM, has a well-earned reputation as some of the best donuts around. Be sure to grab yours early when you visit, just in case they sell out! 

There’s no better way to spend fall weekends than conducting your own donut taste tests. Be sure to add Robinette's Apple Haus, open Monday to Saturday: 7:30 AM - 6 PM and Sunday: noon - 6 PM, and Moelker Orchards, open Monday to Friday: 7:30 AM - 6 PM and Saturday: 8 AM - 5:30 PM, to your itinerary!

Front Entrance at Robinette's Apple Haus & Winery

Robinette's is a popular West Michigan stop for apple picking.

Photo Credit: Experience Grand Rapids


Apple Picking

Honey Crisp apples are a hot commodity across West Michigan these days. But don’t forget about Gala, Fuji, McIntosh, and my personal favorite, Golden Delicious apples. Schwallier's Country Basket and Robinette's Apple Haus are open and ready for you! Call ahead to see what varieties are available and plan your visit.
 

Fallasburg Covered Bridge

Fallasburg Covered Bridge is a prime location to view and photograph West Michigan's fall colors.

Photo Credit: Drew Links Photo


Color Tour and Color Hikes 

Fall wouldn't be complete without a color tour. For those who want to hit the open road, Pure Michigan suggests the Pure Michigan Color Tour. If you’re looking to stay more local, here are some great ideas to see plenty of gorgeous fall colors to see in and around the Grand Rapids area. Fit in exercise and colorful foliage with a hike around Fallasburg Park's Covered Bridge or Rosy Mound Natural Area. Take your camera and catch beautiful glimpses of fall against the deep blue waters of Lake Michigan!

A goat biting a sign that reads "spread love not germs."

Many local attractions offer fun for kids. Be sure to visit the friendly goats at Post Family Farm!

Photo Credit: Brian Craig for Experience Grand Rapids


Kids Activities And Animal Petting Zoos 

Round out your autumn activities with fun for the kids. Many orchards have added kids' activities over the past few years. Robinette's Apple Haus has an inflated jumping pillow and petting zoo. Post Family Farm has friendly goats galore with their own activity house you have to see to believe. A stop at Ed Dunneback & Girls Fruit Farm, open Tuesday to Thursday and Saturday: 9 AM - 6 PM, Friday: 9 AM - 8 PM, and Sunday: 11 AM - 6 PM, for the goats, playground, and sunflower field when in season is always a good choice too.

What are some of your favorite fall family activities? Let us know in the comments below and have a great time taking in fall! 

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