For us, the veritable grand finale of the Halloween season was “Tales of the Night.” It was quite a drive to this event, but well worth it.

Tales of the Night takes place some ways away from us. It is both a long drive and an eventful drive up and down twisty, unlit roads. The drive finally culminates at a working farm, seemingly in the middle of nowhere. This event–like many others we attended–was so popular that we had to park out in a field and walk up a hill to the venue. We were then greeted by an adorable farm stand stacked with seasonal pumpkins and possibly gourds in all varieties of color. After this brief splash of light, we were plunged into a warm and festive darkness as we made our way to the first event, a witch telling stories in a lodge warmed by fire and lit only by decorative jack-o-lanterns lining an enormous mantel. The witch was very engaging. To me, she was more of a crone with a green face and stringy hair dressed in peasant clothes. The tales she told were rustic. I could have stayed in this lodge like room all night, but there were miles to go, literally.

As we exited the lodge, we were greeted by a row of jack-o-lanterns decorating a stone wall.

Jack-O-Lantern

Jack-O-Lantern

Unbeknown to us, after we rounded the stone wall, we’d be en route down a long, snaky path that criss-crossed its way down a long hill. The hill was steep and torture on the knees. However, the cheery atmosphere and glimmer of tea lights illuminating the way was enough to keep up going. We ended up at yet another face painting kiosk on the way, which was unavoidable. Then, it was onwards and downwards to an array of events further down the hill. First, we went on a side excursion around the edge of a field. Here, we encountered various fairy tale characters (Miss Muffet, Three Pigs, Peter Pumpkin Eater, etc.) romping around in the woods at night. That was actually far more creepy than it sounds. I guess this is where the event gets its name. The characters drew us along with them as they played in the woods and regaled us with rhymes and songs and stand up comedy in some instances. After that event, we ran into witches seated on quilts telling stories to passing children, an underground haunted tomb and an enclosure with a live fox darting in and out in the dark.

Unfortunately, I was unable to take any pictures until we came to an indoor presentation of some classically frightening creatures like snakes, tarantulas and scorpions. My son–though generally interested in science–was not feeling the creatures and quickly wanted to get back on track for more action.

Creepy Critters

Creepy Critters

Hissing Cockroaches

Hissing Cockroaches

We didn’t have to go far to find a group of skeletons kicking back. My son sighed a sigh of release. Skeletons are just his thing.

Skeletons

Skeletons

The excitement waned again, when my son realized that we were actually on a farm. He was not expecting real chickens, pigs and sheep to be inhabiting this Halloween landscape.

Chickens

Chickens

Pigs

Pigs

The night was young however. We found other barns filled with scarecrows and owls (a family favorite) and fun things to actually play with.

Scarecrow

Scarecrow

Owl

Owl

Brush a Horse Tail

Brush a Horse Tail

Saddle Horses

Saddle Horses

Cow Learning Station

Cow Learning Station

After the last of these educational barns, the fun really picked up. We wandered into an unlit greenhouse filled with pumpkins and gourds. It was quite a site to behold. We’re not even sure if we were supposed to go in there, but that was fun! Just outside the greenhouse doors were little vegetable plots used to teach children–presumably–how to plant. For the purpose of the event, each little plot was decorated with a humorous gravestone and a few skeleton arms and legs reached out of the ground here and there. In this same general area, an educator stood by an open pen containing a 40 vulture with one wing. The vulture had been injured by a car and had been cared for by the farm for forty long years. Onlookers were astonished by the longevity of the creature and a bit grossed out by the remains of the mouse or rat that it had been eating.

After we wrapped up our time wandering the various sights in the middle of the farm, we went looking for hayrides on its outskirts. It took some doing to find them, but we did manage to end our farm adventure with a hayride through a field filled with skeletons, bonfires, pumpkin headed creatures and other horrors. Quite a night!

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