Fall Activities

Paxton+Manor

Jodi Snare

Paxton Manor

Written by Staff Writer Ella Erickson and Staff Writer Ellie Mumaw

With fall in full swing, there are loads of activities in which Loudoun residents can participate.

A classic Halloween tradition for many people is going to pick pumpkins. Lucky for us, there is a great patch that’s only twenty five minutes away from Woodgrove. Great Country Farms is located in Bluemont, Virginia, and is open from 9:00 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. The entrance fees range from $8 to $10 for children and $10 to $12 for adults.  With the money that you’re paying, you get a variety of choices of pumpkins such as neck pumpkins, warty knuckleheads, and the classic jack-o-lantern.

If you’re in the mood for a drive, there is another great patch forty five minutes away from Woodgrove. Jumbo’s Pumpkin Patch is in Middletown, Maryland. Although it’s a drive, you have the option to go through a corn maze that’s 14 acres long, to visit their petting zoo, to have a free hay ride, to play on their playground and to participate in a little face-painting. It’s the perfect place to go with the family, especially if there are younger children.

Getting ready for Halloween, or just want a good spook? Check out the Haunted Forest in Sterling or Shocktober at the Paxton House in Leesburg.

The Haunted Forest is a trail going through “Halloween Woods.” The story-line for the haunt is that the property is the site where boarding school children disappeared on their walk to school. According to the legend, their bodies were found on a Halloween night by a stray dog. People still claim to see a person in the clown costume while walking through the woods.

If you are looking for a more local and condensed place to be spooked, go to Shocktober at the Paxton House.  Billed as “the only REAL Haunted House in Northern Virginia,” the Paxton House is the former home to Jedidiah Carver, who supposedly moved into the caverns below the house after his land was seized because of his unorthodox acts of animal husbandry over 100 years ago. At this time of year, Paxton is run by various actors, sure to rattle some bones and cause a few tears of fear to be shed.

If you are not in Halloween activities, there are still many other local spots to visit with your friends. Popular destinations include The Leesburg Villages, Reston Town Center, and One Loudoun in Ashburn.

Activities to do at the Leesburg Villages involve eating at one of many restaurants such as Bonchon Chicken, Noodles & Company, Rita’s Italian Ice, and BurgerFi. Besides eating, The Leesburg Villages is also home to Cobb 12 Cinemas, King Pinz, and Glow Golf. In the mood to shop? Check out Altar’d State and Ulta Cosmetics.

The Reston Town center is a great place to dine, shop and spend the day. Dining options include Ben&Jerry’s Ice Cream, Chipotle, Clyde’s, Panera Bread, Sweetgreen, and Uncle Julio’s. There are tons of shopping options such as Anthropologie, Victoria’s Secret, J Crew, and an Apple Store, and there is a local cinema showing the latest movies.  Starting in November, the outdoor concert venue turns into an ice-skating rink.  Check the Reston Town Center website for hours of operation and costs.

Another local center to go to is the newly opened One Loudoun in Ashburn. One Loudoun houses Uncle Julio’s, Nando’s, Elevation Burger, Tropical Smoothie, Firehouse Subs, and Pho Royal. One Loudoun also has an Alamo Cinemas and the new Top Golf driving range.

Locally, a great time to walk, shop, and dine with friends or family is during First Fridays in downtown Leesburg. These occur on the first Friday of every month. The three dates left are November 6th, December 4th, and February 5th. There is live music including guitar, jazz, and rock n’ roll, and popular eateries are China King, Fireworks Pizza, Shoes, Cup and Cork, and Leesburg Diner.