Fall Fun: 9 Must-Visit Spots for Hayrides, Orchards, and More in Metro Phoenix

Fall Fun: 9 Must-Visit Spots for Hayrides, Orchards, and More in Metro Phoenix

Photo courtesy of Canva

By Teresa K. Traverse

September 30, 2023

Fall has a special aesthetic to it, instantly bringing to mind images of apple cider, autumnal foliage, pumpkin spice lattes, and hayrides, just to name a few.

Save for the changing leaves—you’ll have to drive up to Flagstaff to see those—you can find all of that (and more!) in metro Phoenix. Here are nine places where you can get your fall on.

Mother Nature’s Farm

Where: 1663 E. Baseline Road, Gilbert

When: Sept. 23-Oct. 31

Price: Tickets cost $15 per person aged 1 and older. They can only be purchased at the farm, which only accepts cash.


Mother Nature’s Farm in Gilbert has a pumpkin patch that’s open through Halloween. When families are not picking pumpkins, they’re welcome to enjoy face painting, hayrides, a bubble area, a dirt-hill slide, a gift shop, and animals. Visitors are welcome to bring picnic lunches but they can also purchase snacks like hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy, and snow cones.

Harvest in the Heritage District

Where: Downtown Gilbert

When: Sept. 22-Nov. 5

Downtown Gilbert is celebrating fall with a variety of events. Snap photos for the ‘Gram by the jack-’o-lantern xylophone (fully operational) or by the Dia de los Muertos altar. Every Thursday in October, head to Water Tower Plaza to hear free concerts from 6:30-8:30 p.m.

Arizona Fall Fest

Where: Margaret T. Hance Park, Phoenix

Price: Free

When: Nov. 4, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Arizona Fall Fest claims to be the largest community event held at Margaret T. Hance Park, located in downtown Phoenix, with more than 200 local vendors showcasing their goods. Attendees can also enjoy alcoholic beverages from local makers, listen to live music, and try plenty of local cuisine from more than 40 local restaurants. The pet-friendly festival also has a kids zone.

Arizona Pumpkin Patch

Where: Multiple locations throughout metro Phoenix

Price: Free admission

When: Oct. 14-31


Find farm-grown pumpkins at a variety of locations throughout the Valley at the appropriately named Arizona Pumpkin Patch—which is actually made up of multiple patches. Visit the website to see a list of specific locations spread across 11 cities and towns. Dogs are welcome—and dogs in costumes are encouraged.

Vertuccio Farms Fall Festival

Where: 4011 S. Power Road, Mesa

Price: Tickets cost $15 per person. (Discounts available for nonperishable food donations, senior citizens, and active or retired military and first responders.)

When: Sept. 29-Oct. 29

Vertuccio Farms’ Fall Festival in Mesa provides a plethora of fall activities including a corn maze, petting zoo, carnival games, a train ride, a jump pad, a playground, mini golf, and more. One true highlight: the extensive, 5-acre corn maze. Bring a flashlight if you plan on heading into the maze after dark (or aren’t sure you’ll make it out by sunset). Leashed dogs are welcome.

Schnepf Farms Pumpkin & Chili Party

When: Oct. 5-29

Where: 24810 S. Rittenhouse Road, Queen Creek

Price: $29.95 per person; $82.50 for a season pass

Queen Creek’s Schnepf Farms will be transformed into an all-out fall extravaganza in October. Expect plenty of kid-friendly games and attractions including ziplines, a sunflower field, hayrides, a swing ride, a ropes course, mini golf, corn holes, and a petting zoo. Food-wise, you can look forward to pumpkin chili, burgers, baked goods, burritos, succotash, and mesquite-grilled pizza. Outside food and drink is not allowed.

MacDonald’s Ranch Annual Pumpkin Patch

When: Sept. 30-Oct. 29

Where: 26540 N. Scottsdale Road, Scottsdale

Price: $15 per person. Children under 1 are free.


Fall Fun: 9 Must-Visit Spots for Hayrides, Orchards, and More in Metro Phoenix

Photo courtesy of MacDonald’s Ranch Annual Pumpkin Patch

Scottsdale’s MacDonald’s Ranch Pumpkin Patch features a hay-bale maze, a petting zoo, gold panning, photo areas, a pedal-car track for kids, and lawn games like giant Jenga. Pumpkins grown by local farmers cost anywhere from $2 to $60. For an additional fee, kids can ride a pony, a barrel train, a big train, feed animals at the petting zoo, or hold on for dear life on the mechanical bull (if they’re 4 feet or taller).

Arizona State Fair

When: Thursdays-Sundays, Sept. 22-Oct. 29

Where: 1826 W. McDowell Road, Phoenix

Price: $15


Although not as fall-themed as the other events and places on this list, the Arizona State Fair is a fall institution in Phoenix that we simply couldn’t leave out. Fair highlights include indulgent food (deep-fried Oreos, anyone?), plenty of festival rides, live music, and more.

Fear Farm

When: Sept. 22-Oct. 31

Where: 6801 N. 99th Ave., Glendale

Price: $13.99 on presale, with prices set to rise as the event nears


Glendale’s sprawling Fear Farm features haunted houses, a haunted hayride, and a 20-acre corn maze that is, you guessed it, also haunted. If you’re not interested in escaping “The Reaping” in the maze, try The Midway, a spooky carnival experience complete with cotton candy and funnel cakes, music, lights, and, of course, undead characters roaming throughout. The event’s website cautions that Fear Farm might not be appropriate for children 12 and under.

Scarizona Scaregrounds & Frights in the Lights

When: Oct. 6-30

Where: 1901 N. Alma School Road, Mesa

Price: $24.95 per person (same price per car if you’re driving through)

Fall Fun: 9 Must-Visit Spots for Hayrides, Orchards, and More in Metro Phoenix

Photo courtesy of Scarizona Scaregrounds

Scarizona Scaregrounds is returning to the Thompson Event Center in Mesa. Scarizona consists of two parts: a haunted house and a drive-thru light show. From Oct. 6-31, kids ages 12 and up can wander through the haunted house. This year’s themes include “Mayhem in the Madness” and “Startled Darkness.” Younger kids and their families are invited to partake in a mile-long drive-thru light show dubbed “Frights in the Lights.”

READ MORE: 6 Arizona Adventure Parks Worthy of a Family Road Trip


  • Teresa K. Traverse

    Teresa K. Traverse is a Phoenix, Arizona-based writer and editor. Her work also has appeared in national print outlets including Weight Watchers, Bust and Parenting magazines and on sites like Tripadvisor, Wine Enthusiast, SFGate, Brides, Rachael Ray Every Day, Bustle, Racked, ForRent.com, WeddingWire, Refinery29, The Daily Meal, Oxygenmag.com, USA Today and Fast Company. She's the managing editor of Sedona Monthly. In her spare time, she loves hiking, reading magazines and spending quality time with her long-haired Chihuahua, Rocket. Visit teresaktraverse.com to check out more of her work.

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