5 can’t-miss fall fun for the kids

After a sizzling hot summer, there’s nothing more refreshing than the coolness of a wild and wonderful autumn. Around every curvy mountain turn, there’s bursting foliage, fun festivals and family-friendly farms.

Here are 5 unique ways to have some real fall fun with the kids:

1. Churn fresh apple butter

Since 1974, kids and big kids alike have filled the historic streets of Berkeley Springs for some good ol’-fashioned fun at the annual Apple Butter Festival. Enjoy live music, a parade, country food, local crafts and fun contests like best beard or quickest turtle.

But the star of this nostalgic fest is, of course, the giant vats of apple butter bubbling right there on the streets! By mid-afternoon, it’s simmered to spicy perfection. Take home a jar, canned straight out of the kettle.

New River Gorge in the autumn, WV

2. All aboard for the ride of a lifetime!

New River Train Excursions run 4 days in October, giving passengers a front-row seat to some of the best fall foliage on the East Coast. Watch the dazzling mountain colors whizz by from a glass dome on the second floor of the railcar!

The final destination is Hinton, a beautiful railroad town that boomed in the early 1900s. Lucky for railroad lovers, the train rides coincide with the Hinton Railroad Days Festival. Grab some fair food, browse local crafts and explore rail history before boarding the train back home.

3. Watch daredevils dive off a bridge

Watch daredevils plunge off the towering New River Gorge Bridge into the river below— with parachutes, of course. Bridge Day will undoubtedly be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for the little ones (and you!)

Gawk over the railings as you watch the colorful parachutes pop open mere feet from the New River below. When you’ve had enough adrenaline, grab a corn dog or bag of caramel corn and peruse the local vendors lining the road.

Playing with pumpkins in WV

4. Enjoy a wild fall on the farm

Every September, Gritt’s Farm becomes one giant playground. They pack their plot of land full of fun fall festivities, including a pick-your-own pumpkin patch, hay maze, wagon train, pedal karts and apple sling shots. When the sun goes down, enjoy a campfire before heading home to tuck the kiddies in bed.

5. Zip over a ginormous corn maze

When the Coopers aren’t focusing on beef, hay, corn, tobacco and timber, they’re plotting the craziest ways to transform their farm into a mecca for fall fun! Each fall, the family crafts giant corn mazes, pumpkin patches and whizzing ziplines.

During the day, answer trivia questions to guide your way through the sprawling corn maze. Closer to Halloween, the maze turns into a heart-pounding haunt after the sun goes down. You can scoop a bird’s eye view of the maze on a zipline course made up of 3 towers (the highest exceeds 80 feet). There are 3 zip runs offer more than 1,500 feet of flying fun!

This post was last updated on March 16, 2022