If your family loves to take a hayrack ride, you don’t have to know someone who owns a farm this fall. Several park districts and historic organizations are offering hay rides in the fall of 2017, in addition to the apple orchards and pumpkin patches where hayrack rides are common. Know of more? Please post them in the comments section!
October 3 – “Autumn Hayride”
Cantigny Park in Wheaton will offer their Autumn Hayride on Tuesday, October 3, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. There is no fee for a hayride after paying the regular parking lot fee of $5 per vehicle. Rides depart from the visitors’ center parking lot.
October 4, 9, 11, and 15 – “Fall Colors Wagon Tour”
October 27 and 30 – “Autumn Moon Hayride”
St. James Farm Forest Preserve is offering Fall Colors Wagon Tours from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. October 4, 9, 11 and 15. During the 30-minute trip, riders will learn about the preserves’ trees, natural areas, buildings, and equestrian roots. Autumn Moon Hayrides will be offered October 27 and 30 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. The evening rides will offer a rare chance to experience the preserve after dark while hearing about the moon. Rides are $5 per person, children under five are free. To register, call 630-580-7025.
October 6-7, 13-14, and October 20–21 – “Moonlight Hayrides”
The St. Charles Park District offers “Moonlight Hayrides” at Primrose Farm, which is located in northwest St. Charles, west of Randall Road. You’ll take a 30-minute tractor-drawn wagon ride around the fields of Primrose Farm at the height of the fall harvest. You can also participate in a marshmallow roast and treat yourself to hot chocolate or mulled rider. The rides are being offered Oct. 6-7, 13-14, and 20-21. The cost is $8 each for residents, $12 for non-residents. Advance registration is recommended; find more info about registering here.
October 6 through the 28th – “Family Hayrides”
The Naperville Park District offers “Family Hayrides” throughout October at Seager Park and at Knoch Knolls Nature Center. You can bring your own food to cook over the bonfire or bring supplies for s’mores. They’ll supply the hot chocolate and apple cider. Admission is $8 each for residents, $12 each for non-residents. Advance registration is required. The park district is also offering “Group Hayrides” and a special “Halloween Hayride.” Check this page for more details.
October 7–9, October 14–15, October 21-22, October 28-29 – “Pumpkin Weekends”
Blackberry Farm in Aurora regularly offers hayrides, but it is now in its limited autumn hours. Hayrides will be available during its “Pumpkin Weekends” from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends in October, as well on Columbus Day, Monday, October 9. Weekends include a corn crib, pumpkin paddle, a pumpkin decorating station, the carousel and train. Park admission is $8 per non-resident adults, $7 for non-resident children. For more info, please call 630-892-1550 or visit www.foxvalleyparkdistrict.org or the Blackberry Farm Facebook page.
October 8 – “Fall Festival”
Danada Forest Preserve in Wheaton will offer horse-drawn and tractor-pulled hayrides through the autumn woods as part of its Fall Festival on Sunday, Oct.8, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission and parking are free at the fall festival, although some activities have small fees. Children will also be able to decorate paper hobbyhorses, take pony rides, paint pumpkins or stop by the face-painting booth. Find more info on this equestrian-themed event here.
October 14 – “Fall Festival”
Cantigny in Wheaton will offer hayrides on Saturday, Oct. 14, during its Fall Festival. The fee is $1 per person, and there is a $5 parking fee for admission to the park per vehicle. The Fall Festival, scheduled for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., will also feature pumpkin decorating, children’s craft projects, multiple inflatables for all ages and more. There will be live music performed throughout the fest.