By KENNETH MCDONELL & RACHEL COOPER
Kayaking, live music, hiking, pumpkin patches, apple picking, Halloween spirit, and fall festivals. For students staying at UMW or in Fredericksburg for fall break, there are events to attend and places to visit around campus to enjoy the break.
Oktoberfest kicked off fall events in the Fredericksburg area, but what’s next? Fredericksburg and the surrounding area is full of fun, fall-themed opportunities for students. There are numerous activities close to campus that students can go to, especially leading up to Halloween, from haunted hayrides and pumpkin picking.
Fall is a great time for lazy activities and sitting outside. Senior John Shreve said he enjoys fall weather by “sitting in my rocking chair on a cool autumn morning on the front porch with a hot cup of pumpkin spice coffee.” But it is also a great idea to get out and about to experience fall. There are plenty of things happening in and around Fredericksburg this weekend so enjoy the break and go check them out!
Kings Dominion Amusement Park is giving a discount on Friday night to college students with their student ID for their Halloween Haunt. Ghost Walks around Fredericksburg are Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. beginning at the Weems-Botts Museum Annex and continuing around the streets of haunted Fredericksburg led by lantern. Enjoy cider, hot cocoa, and roasted marshmallows in Merchant Park. ($12 adult admission).
Olde Towne Carriage Ghosts, Witch, Murder, and Mayhem Tour is a1-hour carriage ride around Fredericksburg to try to spot the undead wandering the streets. Tour times are 6 p.m., 7 p.m., and 8 p.m. on Friday and 6 p.m., 7 p.m., 8 p.m., and 9 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday night. ($18 as long as tickets are available). There is also a haunted trails attraction in Dumfries, called the “Death Trail”, which is north of campus and is held on weekend nights throughout October.
Go for a hike in Shenandoah National Park. Load your friends into a car and spend the day exploring the Blue Ridge Mountains in the beauty of autumn. ($30 per car)
Kayaking with the Eagles on Sunday from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. is a chance to kayak on the lower Potomac River in Caledon State Park and watch for bald eagles as well as other waterfowl. ($19 to rent a solo kayak and $25 for a tandem).
Stafford Fall Family Festival is on Saturday from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at Pratt Park. It will feature bluegrass music, festival food, a pumpkin derby, hayrides, and artisans (free admission).
King George Fall Festival is on Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. with a craft and vendor fair including food trucks from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., a parade at 11 a.m., and live music all day at King George High School. (free admission).
Fall Festival Weekend at Braehead Farm in Fredericksburg on Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Activities include hayrides, corn maze, sunflower walk, shopping in the Market, and pumpkin and sunflower picking. There is also lunch, kettle corn, and ice cream. ($9 admission).
Graves Mountain Apple Harvest Festival in Syria, VA on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Food, entertainment, over seventy arts, and crafts vendors, hay rides, hay maze, horseback rides, apple butter making, a home cooked meal, and of course, apples. (free admission)
One of the big fall events in the Fredericksburg area is the Belvedere Plantation “Fall Harvest Festival”. They have an abundance of activities including a pumpkin patch, hayrides, pig races, fireworks, a mini corn maze, and food, as well as several other activities.
Pumpkin Patches and Apple Orchards:
Braehead Farm Market is pick-your-own fields this weekend and Monday and Tuesday. Pick up your own pumpkins to carve with your friends, sunflowers to spruce up your apartment, or other autumn produce.
Belvedere Plantation in Fredericksburg is open Friday night from 5 p.m.-10 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Tuesday 10 a.m.-2 p.m. for fall festivities, giant slides, pumpkin patches lit for night picking, and corn mazes. (tickets must be purchased online)
The Great Pumpkin Derby Workshop that will take place Oct. 11 from 6-7:30 p.m. where there will be awards given to the best-decorated pumpkins. In addition to the Pumpkin Derby, there is also an event just south of campus where people will be able to pick a floating pumpkin out of the pool, then carve and decorate it. It will be held on Ball Circle. You can participate in the contest, or just come out for fun.