Welcome to October, gals! For those of us who frequently refresh a social media timeline or two, the news has been relentlessly heavy in almost every way. I just saw someone quote their therapist on Twitter, basically saying, “It’s ok to go offline sometimes because humans aren’t meant to process suffering on this kind of scale.” Dang, that resonates. We want to pay attention and help and stay informed, but we also need to find a balance.
So, for October, let’s be sure to get out into the community and have some fun with our kids and families whenever possible. Fill up our cups with good experiences. Gotta charge those batteries so you can keep doing what you need to do!
For maximum October vibes, our guide this month is sponsored by Shadow Creek Pumpkin Farm. Their Grand Opening was September 30th, and they are all about the FALL EXPERIENCE. Picture the most autumnal farm situation you can imagine — a pecan tree canopy over the front drive, 2-acre corn maze, hayrides, animals, farm games and attractions, tree swings, fall foods, live music, and pumpkins galore — that’s Shadow Creek. Fifteen acres of woods, ponds, and rolling pastures just 30 minutes south of Dallas. It’s the perfect opportunity to recharge and have fun with the fam.
Shadow Creek Pumpkin Farm also gives back, and we want to highlight a few of the special events and programs they’ve scheduled for October. FYI, this is a cash only farm, so do plan for that when you go.
All Month :: In partnership with Chick-fil-A in Waxahachie, profits from every chicken sandwich sold at the farm will go to local non-profits and charitable groups
October 7 :: KLTY 94.9 FM remote broadcast, with all profits from food at their Chuckwagon Cafe going to “Save the Children” Hurricane Relief Fund. 10am-12pm
October 14 :: First annual Pumpkin Trail Run in partnership with Time2Run Timing Services. 5k, 10k, and 1M fun runs from 7-9am. Click the link to register!
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All Month :: The life-size animatronic dinos are back for Dinosaurs Live! at the Heard Museum in McKinney. Walk the trails and hear them roar, then get hands-on in their new outdoor fossil dig. Tickets are $11/adults, $8/ages 3-12, 2 & under are free.
All Month :: Autumn at the Arboretum is back this year with a Wonderful World of Oz theme. Over 150,000 fall-booming flowers + Pumpkin Village, the ultimate photo op. Check the link for a complete list of all the special events and attractions. Tickets are $15/adults, $10/ages 3-12, 2 & under are free.
Until October 22 :: This pretty much goes without saying, but the State Fair is on and doing it’s thing until the end of the month. Here’s a link to the daily schedules so you can see everything that’s happening the day you plan to go. They also have a bunch of different package deals that you might be interested in buying ahead of time.
Weekends in October :: If you’ve got bigger kids, how about a trip to the theater for Goosebumps The Musical: Phantom of the Auditorium presented by the Dallas Children’s Theater. It’s kind of a Scooby Doo/Glee/Goosebumps mashup, recommended for ages 7+. Lots of showtimes, so check the link to see which works best for ya.
October 1, 7, 8 :: Last chance to get your ninjas-in-training over to LEGOLAND Discovery Center for Ninjago City Adventure. It’s like a little Ninjago theme park in addition to all the usual LEGOLAND action. Included with regular admission, starting at $15.99 per ticket.
October 2 :: STEAM Team: Alka-Seltzer Rockets at the North Oak Cliff Branch Library. Ages 6 & up can learn about chemical reactions while building a rocket powered by Alka-Seltzers. No way your kid won’t love this. 4-5pm. Free!
October 3 :: Otsukimi is a Japanese festival honoring the full autumn moon. Celebrate with an Otsukimi picnic at Klyde Warren Park — Japanese music and dance performances; sky-gazing and moon activities with the Texas Astronomical Society; Japanese art forms like calligraphy, tea ceremonies, ikebana, and haiku poetry; plus bunny adoptions from The Bunny Burrow Rabbit Rescue. 6:30-9:30pm. Free!
October 5 :: LEGO Challenge! at the Preston Royal Branch Library. Recommended for ages 4-14, work alone or in small groups to build your best themed creation. 4-5pm. Free!
October 5, 12, 19, 26 :: Thursdays at Bookmarks in Northpark Center is for the babies and toddlers. Storytime Serendipity at 10:30am for preschoolers and Baby Basics Storytime at 12:30 for ages 0-18 months.
October 7 :: Dallas Black Dance Theater presents DanceAfrica Marketplace, a global market venue full of entertainment, crafts, fashion, artifacts, and food trucks. 10am-3pm. Free! (P.S. There are also ticketed dance performances the evenings of the 6th & 7th with the theme of “Love, Peace and Respect for Everyone,” a favorite mantra of National DanceAfrica founder, Dr. Charles Davis.)
October 7-8 :: It’s the fall edition of the Cottonwood Arts Festival in Richardson this weekend. Stroll through artist tents (gyro in hand), listen to live music by the lake, and let your kids try different art techniques in the ArtStop children’s area. Free admission and parking!
October 7, 14, 21, 28 :: Showtime Saturdays continue at the Dallas Galleria. Kid-friendly comedy, magic, songs, and silliness. The Galleria also has such a good play area — nice and roomy and with those skylights above. Make a whole morning out of it. 11:30am-12pm. Free!
October 8, 15, 22, 29 :: Love a chance to wander around the Flagship Half Price Books. Did you know they are celebrating their 45th year in business? Every Sunday, Flagship HPB does Storytime and Crafts for kids ages 10 and under. 3-4pm. Free!
October 14 :: Perot Museum Discovery Days has a “Maker” theme this month. Create robots, code, connect circuitry, learn how to make the perfect paper airplane, and lots more. For a limited time, buy your tickets online and receive $2 off per person. Discovery Days is part of regular admission.
October 14 :: Get a good dose of community-focused kindness and sharing at Be My Neighbor Day, a Daniel Tiger event put on by Dallas Heritage Village and KERA. Take part in service projects, meet Daniel and Katerina, explore the Village, and watch some of your favorite Daniel Tiger eps. 10am-2pm. Free!
October 19 :: Ok, no way this isn’t completely bonkers, but there’s a Shopkins Live! Shop it Up! show coming to the Pavillion at the Music Factory in Irving. Tickets start at $25.95, but it sounds like you can get a promo code by surrendering your email to the Shopkins gods.
October 21 :: Ricochet17 is a Richardson city-wide celebration of arts and creativity. I’d say the most kid-approved portions of the event will be at the Richardson Public Library and CityLine Plaza. Check out more event details on Facebook. 10am-4pm. Free!
October 21 :: Perhaps the largest VegFest in Texas will help get your kids to eat their veggies? The Texas Veggie Fair has all the usual festival stuff – tons of food, music, vendors, kid activities, giveaways, a beer garden… but with a focus on plant-based living. If you are vegan, these are your people! If you aren’t, come see how they do it! Reverchon Park, Dallas. 11am-6pm. Free!
October 28 :: It’s Owl-O-Ween at the Trinity River Audubon Center. Make owl crafts, play owl-themed games, prowl for owls, meet live owls, and explore their five miles of trails. 10am-2pm. Free family festival!