All of these great festivals happen during the first half of October, but the festival season, like the leaves and the harvest, is just hitting its peak.
Fall’s bounty is on display at the Downtown Country Market Tuesdays and Thursdays through Oct. 20. The market, on Main Street between Church and Court Streets, features fresh, local produce, baked goods and lemonade, as well as plants and flowers. On Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., local vendors offer fresh produce, fruits and veggies, along with a variety of specialty items at the Clarence Hollow Farmers’ Market, 10717 Main Street, Clarence. Patrons enjoy live entertainment and wine tasting while they get to know local food vendors.
Another fall event unique to the Buffalo region is Local Restaurant Week, Oct. 17-23, when adventurous diners can try new local, independently owned restaurants for a fixed price. Scores of local restaurants across Western New York participate.
Of course, some events during the second half of October tend to have a spookier theme. Here’s a sampling of the best local Halloween events to help you get into the spirit of things:
Haunted Hayrides are a Halloween tradition at Becker Farms in Gasport. During the day, the farm celebrates the harvest season with the Annual Pumpkin Fiesta, a sun, food and fun extravaganza. But things take a darker turn at night. From 7 to 9 weekend evenings, the hay wagons cruise through the farm’s forests, where strange encounters and eerie happenings take place. Both events continue through Oct. 30.
Howl-o-Ween Hayrides. At the Buffalo Zoo, the hayrides on Oct. 29 and 30 are less frightful and more friendly. From 4 to 7 p.m., there are treats, games, apple cider and donuts, and lots of fun for youngsters of all ages.
The Haunted Fortress. A headless ghost reputedly lives in the 1726 French Castle at Old Fort Niagara in Youngstown. Those who have got the stomach for it can join a tour of the darkened fort to experience its mysterious and violent past. Unexplained shadows, slamming doors and eerie orbs may appear along the way. The tour finishes with true ghost stories beside a bonfire and a trek of the post’s 1755 graveyard.
Hallowine Murder Mystery weekend. Wine and sleuthing—what a great pairing! Participants journey to wineries along the Niagara Wine Trail on Oct. 22 and 23, collect clues, interview suspects and try to solve the mystery by the time they reach the last winery.
Fall festivals are the most fun when you go with friends who enjoy exploring the diverse activities Buffalo has to offer. The people who will live at Canterbury Woods Gates Circle are the kind of folks who love this exciting urban area. If you’d like to be part of that vivacious group, learn more about the elegant, active lifestyle this unique retirement community offers by calling 716-929-5817.