Autumn IS awesome…
Whether you want to check out FREE concerts, hand-select your perfect pumpkins and apples, get spooked, or kick-back some “boos” at a local haunt; Autumn is the perfect time of year to enjoy all the bounty that Kokomo has to offer!
To really love the seasons, it helps to engage in them. And to really appreciate and enjoy your city, it helps to get out in it. If you plan now, you can look forward to seeing and doing later! So here is an easy go-to list (in no specific order) of 10 local Autumn activities. Have fun, and “fall” in love with Kokomo!
10 Awesome Autumn Things You Must Do In Kokomo
The City of Firsts VW Club invites you to their 11th Annual Oktoberfest Volkswagen Cruise-In! This year’s event will take place in Foster Park on Friday, September 25th! Starting at 4PM, there will be multiple food vendors, Volkswagen merchandise and LIVE MUSIC. Partnering with the Kokomo Summer Concert Series, you won’t want to miss the final concert this year with The Lovin’ Spoonful performing at the Foster Park Pavilion. “If you believe in magic, come along with me”…to Oktoberfest! See you there!
You still have time to enjoy the market outdoors before it moves inside for Winter! Every Saturday from 9AM until 1PM, now through October 10th, at the corner of Mulberry and Washington, The Kokomo Farmers’ Market welcomes you to their outdoor market. If you don’t want to head to the market hungry, be sure to stop by Main Street Cafe, Gabettas or the Gingerbread House Bakery to fill up first. Or, let your hunger be your guide. Select from fresh seasonal produce, healthy proteins, homemade sweets and treats, and more! It doesn’t cost anything to get in, and there really is something for everyone, even pets! The Farmers’ Market also has a lot for youngsters: the Bookmobile, live animals, the Little Sprouts’ Club and different events each week. Give them a follow on Facebook, so you don’t miss out!
Even if your pets aren’t into punny puppy costumes, your dogs will still lovingly lick you for walking them in the 9th annual Barktober Fest! Hosted by the Kokomo Humane Society, this year the walk will take place in Foster Park. Mark your calendar for Saturday, October 3rd from 9AM to Noon. Expect to see vendors offering all kinds of goodies for furry family and friends! Don’t have a dog? Come anyways! Watch for more details on the Kokomo Humane Society Facebook page. Live, love, woof.
On the First Friday of each month, from 5:30PM until 9PM, The Kokomo Downtown District comes alive with art, music, food, friends and family! On Friday, October 2nd, downtown will welcome you with music by The Graveyard Stompers! These ghoulish crooners will perform “live” on the Courthouse Square between Sycamore and Walnut Street. But don’t worry, you will still have plenty of time to visit downtown establishments and try to win the costume contest! Parents, get the most of your kids’ costumes too. Trick-or-treating will be offered by a number of participating businesses downtown. This is just a sneak peak for October. Want to know the happenings each month? Click here and follow along! See you in a few weeks!
Voted the Best Kids Hangout in 2014, Guffey Acres actually has something for all ages! Personally, it is one of my fav Fall traditions! Offering over 7 acres of paths, Guffey Acres has a maze of maize for days! Their season is open Saturdays and Sundays from September 26th to October 25, 2015. It’s only $8 for the big kids at heart, and children under 32″ tall receive FREE admission! Once you pay, you play for as long as you stay; meaning the activities and rides are included with the price of admission (with the exception of the corn cannon, which costs one buck for 3 shots). Hayrides, giant checkers, the Barnyard Barrel Train, Tube Slide and Cow Ropin’ are just a few of the activities. They only accept cash for admission, and you might want to have some extra on hand to grab tasty fall treats and concessions, pumpkins and mums. To see a full list of attractions, click here. Now, go get lost!
Sponsored by the City of Kokomo Parks and Recreation Department, this is a FREE event open to the public and for ALL ages (kids under 12 must be accompanied by an adult) . The walk winds along the wooded trail in Jackson Morrow Park with spooky props and live actors on the path. Kids and adults can dress in costume, and you can go anytime between 6PM and 8:30OPM on the eve of Saturday, October 24th. The later you go, the spookier it gets. Little ones might like it better in the light; and if you do go at night, make sure to bring a flashlight. After your walk, take a a little time to tour the Kirkendall Nature Center too!
#7 Apple Orchards & Pumpkin Patches
OK, so a couple of these are not technically in Kokomo, but they are still worth the few extra miles to visit!
McClure’s Apple Orchard: With over 60 acres of orchard, this is a Fall treasure trove of apple dumplings, cider (including hard ciders-yum), baked goods, pumpkins, berries and more! Grab something to eat at The Apple Dumplin Inn; then stroll up to the Animal Barn to visit and feed furried and feathered friends; and afterwards browse produce, ciders and wines at the Apple Barn.
Farlows Orchard: Varieties like Gala, McIntosh, Cortland, Ozark Gold, Mollie and Jonathan apples fresh from the orchard right to your table! They also offer fresh cider, honey, cinnamon sticks, butters, spices and pumpkins.
Prices Pumpkin Patch Walk the rows of pumpkins and gourds, and then glance through the handmade decor and yummy home goods! LOTS of free photo opportunities here, folks. So, have fun capturing your memories with original Autumn backgrounds!
Whether you walk, run or bike, the trails are gorg-e-ous in Autumn! Having created over 46 miles of walkpaths and trails, the City of Kokomo has improved pedestrian safety, added public art and aligned the paths along our rich history. Choose from the Industrial Heritage Trail , the Wildcat Creek Walk of Excellence or for the avid cyclist, you can even pedal a bit further north to pick up the Nickle Plate Trail. Enjoy!
#9 Fantasy and Fear
If you like to participate in fantasy or fear, you will definitely want to consider these!
Kokomo-Con Ivy Tech Kokomo Event and Conference Center, 1500 North Reed Road, Kokomo, IN Taking place on October 24th, 2015 from 10AM-6PM, this comics and pop culture convention welcomes all ages, and especially loves to see those in cosplay and costume! (Parents, here’s an opportunity for your kids to wear their costumes again!) With memorabilia, vendors and entertainment, this will be an experience you won’t forget! Get your geek on!
For the not so faint of heart…
Edge of Insanity 5635 N. 00 EW, Kokomo, IN Built at the turn of the century, Dr. Weitle’s Asylum will take you to the “Edge of Insanity”. As you enter the deranged doctor’s sanitorium, you will shudder at the tortured patients returning to seek revenge. The legend forebodes that the spirit of the doctor often returns to continue his experiments. If you’re not careful, you might be his next patient.
Twisted Darkness 1022 S Main Street, Kokomo, IN Offering laser tag opportunities throughout the year, Twisted Darkness is also a local haunted attraction from September 26th through November 1st. They even offer a “Kids No Fright Night” on October 25th and also a “Twisted Total Darkness”, where you must navigate your way through the pitch black with only a single glow stick. As the zombie outbreak spreads, will you survive the apocalypse?
#10 Sip a Seasonal Brew (or 2)
Seasonal spices, hints of pumpkin and -best of all- fresh hop beers will re-excite your taste buds and warm your liver this Fall! For a pumpkin-inspired pub crawl:
Half Moon Brewery Try: A pint of refreshing Wildcat Wheat, a spicy Bottle Caps appetizer and the smothered Stoplight City Chicken for dinner.
Foxes Trail Try: A smooth Samuel Adams Octoberfest paired with a mouthwatering Grilled Pork Tenderloin and a side of warm and crispy Tater Tots.
Boondocks Try: A crisp Shipyard Pumpkinhead Ale with a shot of spiced rum, in a sugar-rimmed pint. Start with traditional *Blue Crab* Cakes, and for dinner a traditional New Orleans Muffeletta (stacked cured meat sandwich with mozerella and provlone and topped with a signature tapenade).
Cook McDoogal’s Irish Pub Try: A Dogfish Head Craft Brewed Punkin Ale and the guest favorite appetizer, McDoogal Balls. Then for dinner, savor a gourmet Bottlehouse Burger.
The District Try: A bottle of hoppy 3 Floyds Zombie Dust, and start with the Southwest Eggrolls and for dinner, the lime-grilled Mahi Mahi Fish Tacos.
All of the above restaurants are non-smoking, have AMAZING food and drink menus and have separate bar seating available. With the exception of Half Moon Brewery, all of the restaurants offer outdoor dining. And, 4 out of the 5 listed above offer family dining, with Cook McDoogal’s being a 21+ establishment only.