Top 7 Activities for the Spooky Season, 2022

A Halloween hayride, a prime pumpkin patch, a sprawling fright fest, and more things to do in Minnesota

The Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular returns to the Minnesota Zoo
The Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular returns to the Minnesota Zoo

Erik Tormoen

The Dead End Hayride

28186 Kettle River Blvd. N., Wyoming, Minnesota

Open select nights during the fall season, the Dead End Hayride has become a staple of the Halloween season in Minnesota. The Dead End Hayride offers three attractions; included with the purchase of a ticket is of course the hayride, but attendees can also access the haunted trail and the haunted cornfield. If you are brave enough, grab a group of friends and explore all of the haunted frights that this hot spot has to offer.

Scream Town

7410 US-212, Chaska, Minnesota

Touted by CNN as one of the eight best haunted house attractions in the country in 2019, Scream Town offers seven large haunted houses with unique themes and frights. Tucked away in a valley, the location of Scream Town offers scenery that perfectly embodies the spirit of the Halloween season. (We wrote about the attraction’s “weird beauty” back in 2017.)

Twin Cities Maze

8001 109th Ave. N., Brooklyn Park, Minnesota

Twin Cities Maze is the home of what claims to be the largest corn maze in the Twin Cities. The scenic views on display at this location are a great way to take in the fall colors and all of the beauty that the season has to offer. If all of that walking and gazing at corn makes you hungry, Twin Cities Maze often plays host to a variety of food trucks from around the Twin Cities area.

Afton Apple Orchard and Pumpkin Patch

14421 90th St. S., Hastings, Minnesota

There are perhaps no activities more synonymous with the fall season than going to an apple orchard or pumpkin patch. Afton Apple Orchard and Pumpkin Patch provides an experience that allows visitors to enjoy the great outdoors while supporting local orchards and farms. In addition to offering fresh fruits, vegetables, and gourds, Afton Apple Orchard and Pumpkin patch provides quintessential fall activities: hayrides, a petting farm, a playground, and more.

Horror! At The Parkway

4814 Chicago Ave., Minneapolis, Minnesota

Spanning from Oct. 6 to Halloween night, the Parkway Theater in Minneapolis is screening the terrifying classics we all know and love. Purchasing a “Horror! At The Parkway” pass will provide admission and a free bag of popcorn for each screening.

Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular

13000 Zoo Blvd., Apple Valley, Minnesota

The Jack-O-Lantern spectacular is returning for a third year at the Minnesota Zoo. The event consists of a strolling exhibit featuring more than 5,000 illuminated, uniquely shaped pumpkins accompanied by fog and musical vignettes. The event runs from Oct. 1 to Nov. 5. (Check out our snapshots of the 2019 spectacle here.)

Halloween Grande Day Parade

1922 First Ave. S., Anoka, Minnesota

Considered by many to be the Halloween capital of the world, Anoka is the host city of the much-anticipated Halloween Grande Day Parade. After nearly a month of preparing for the spooky holiday, the city hosts such festivities as a tent party, the Grande Day Parade, and the coronation of Halloween royalty.

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Frank Lien is an editorial intern who attends Concordia University in St. Paul and is set to graduate in May 2023. He is pursuing a major in communication studies and a minor in marketing. He enjoys reading, watching sports, and listening to old radio shows.