Fall activities for on and off campus students

Pumpkin spice and pumpkin carving season is finally here. Halloween is approaching, and fall traditions are taking over. Students are scrambling to study for midterms. But in the midst of all this chaos, there are some fall activities that students can do to enjoy the season and take their minds off of their workload.

Pumpkin picking: Whether it be carving or painting, students often gravitate towards the fall tradition of decorating pumpkins. There are some locations off campus that sell all kinds of pumpkins and gourds.

J Razz & Tazz Farm is located in Guilford County and is home to hundreds of pumpkins of various sizes and shapes. The farm’s Halloween Light Show can really get you into a spooky mood.

“My family used to go pumpkin picking and carve them, but we can’t this year,” sophomore Alex Souvignier shared.

Pie and cookie baking: The aroma of pumpkin pie and Pillsbury Ready to Bake! Pumpkin Shape Sugar Cookies filling the homes or residential halls of students is truly a scent of fall. Apple cider is always a popular beverage to accompany these autumn treats.

Baking in a residential hall may be a little difficult considering the changes due to COVID-19, but there are some ways to actually cook pumpkin pie in dorm room microwaves. The Pillsbury cookies do require an oven.

Sophomore G Brindle revealed their favorite baked treat during the fall.

”I love the ghost cookies!” Brindle said. “The tiny little ghost sugar cookies are my absolute favorite.”

Corn mazes and hayrides: What better way to experience fall than with a corn maze? Kersey Valley Maize Adventure is an attraction in Guilford County that hosts events such as corn mazes, hay rides, ziplining and much more.

Haunted trails and attractions: Kersey Valley Spookywoods and Woods of Terror are just a couple of the many haunted attractions that are located in the Greensboro area. Both of these locations are in Guilford County and are popular attractions among Greensboro and other surrounding towns.

Spookywoods has 12 themed sets for visitors to explore, including a laser tag set and an escape room. Woods of Terror also has 12 themed sets, including Horror Movie Classics, Night Stalkers, the Slaughter House and the Awakening.

NC State Fair (food): Due to COVID-19, NC State Fair events have been canceled, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get some of the snacks from this fall festivity.

As of Oct. 15, vendors have been selling popular foods such as turkey legs from McBride Concessions, funnel cakes from Debbie’s Concessions and roasted corn from Old Style Foods. These vendors are located in Wake County and only serve take-out options.

Horror/Halloween movie marathon: An essential part of the Halloween/fall season is watching the nostalgic films that air on platforms such as Freeform and Hulu. “Hocus Pocus,” “Practical Magic” and “Twitches” are just a few of the hundreds of other films being scheduled for the month of October. There are also scarier films available such as “Scream 4,” “Child’s Play,” “Poltergeist” and “The Curse of La Llorona.”

Hulu uses Huluween to premiere a collection of horror movies, family Halloween movies and classic cult films. Freeform hosts 31 Nights of Halloween, which shows more family-friendly Halloween movies such as “Scooby-Doo,” “Casper” and “Halloweentown’.’

Guilford students revealed some of their favorite Halloween/scary movies.

“Some of my favorites are ‘Sleepy Hollow,’ ‘The Book of Life,’ both of the ‘Addams Family’ movies, ‘Scary Movie’ 1 and 2, and ‘Silence of the Lambs’,” Souvignier responded.

“I watch all types of scary movies,” sophomore Dash K. Rouse added. “But the Halloween franchise movies are my favorite movies of all time. I watch them at all times of the year, even Christmas. I can watch them over and over.”

Edgar Allan Poe: A spooky tale from an even spookier poet/writer can be the perfect treat for a fall tradition. “The Masque of the Red Death” and “The Raven” are some pretty scary stories that will surely send a chill down your spine, as one reveals the horrors of the plague and the other includes incessant tapping, darkness and a creepy raven speaking nevermore.

To add even more of a ghostly effect, read Poe by candlelight or flashlight. The Tell-Tale Heart is another eerie story about a murderer’s guilt.

“I love Edgar Allan Poe, books like ‘Silence of the Lambs’ and ‘Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark’,” Brindle said. “My entire childhood was creepy short stories and novels.”

Drive-in movies: Movie theaters have really taken a hit since the pandemic, but there is a safer option if you still want that big screen experience.

The Eden Drive-In is located in Rockingham County and is about 40 minutes away from Greensboro. This outside theater has previously shown Halloween movies such as “Scream,” “Hocus Pocus” and “The Nightmare Before Christmas” for all audiences. So, if you miss that delicious butter smell, the giant sized soda cups and watching a movie on the big screen, this is the next fall activity for you.

Apple picking: Apple Hill Orchard and Cider Mill is located in Morganton, North Carolina and allows visitors to pick their own apples. Orchards are especially busy in October because that is the ideal harvest time.

This orchard also has a bakery and farm market which sells fall favorite goodies like apples and apple cider, jellies, local honey and fall pastries/baked goods. You can also make homemade caramel or candy apples with the apples from the orchard. If you are willing to travel for the two hour estimated time, this will be a true fall tradition to experience.