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Where to find fall fun?

Activities abound in the South Sound

This year’s Rutledge Corn Maze theme is “Thurston County’s Bountiful Byway.” Photo credit: Experience Olympia

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Fall is a great time for harvests, festivals, haunted houses and train rides. The areas surrounding Olympia and Tacoma have many entertaining activities lined up for the next two months. Here are a few highlights.


Rutledge Corn Maze featuring The Bountiful Byway, through Oct. 31

Rutledge Farms' corn maze includes a bevy of farm fun including family friendly activities like a pumpkin patch, cow train, story times and more. At night, the maze transforms into a space for zombie apocalypse paintball or a haunted maze experience. Historically known for its artistic and iconic images -- in 2012 it gained national notoriety for its depiction of Marshawn Lynch -- this year's corn maze will feature the logo of the Bountiful Byway, a recently launched 60-mile agritourism route throughout the region (, to encourage tasting and touring in the area. Find details at

Apple Festival at Lattin's Family Farm, Sept. 30 to Oct. 28

Find the famous apple fritters along with pumpkins, bluegrass music and fall fun at this family farm. Open Saturdays and Sundays Sept. 30 through October. Visitors will find pony rides, apple bobbing and plenty of pumpkins from which to choose. Work up an appetite to enjoy the farm's famous apple fritters along with barbecue, apple crisp, caramel apples, cider, doughnuts and more. Find details at

Scary Nights at "Boo-coda," Fridays and Saturdays in October

During the month of October, the town of Bucoda becomes "Boo-coda" and hosts Scary-Nights, a haunted house that is not for the faint of heart.  It's held in the town gym (which is known for paranormal activity), and guests claim to have witnessed doors slamming unprovoked, spooky giggling from inanimate objects and more. The haunted gym is not recommended for children under the age of 10.

For more information about the region, visit:


The Fife Harvest Festival, Oct. 1 to 6

Since 2005, the Fife Harvest Festival has grown to become the largest community celebration in Fife with more than 5,000 participants. The festival has all kinds of arts, crafts, food, performances and vendors. It is fun for all ages. Free admission; open rain or shine.  For more information, call 253.896.8657 or visit

City of Lakewood's Free Truck and Tractor Day, Oct. 14

Free hayrides, hard hats and pumpkins (while supplies last). Enjoy pumpkin painting, crafts, games, and a giant slingshot for pumpkin chucking! Children can climb on dozens of giant trucks and tractors or sit in the driver's seat and honk the horn. Free parking.  For more information, call 253.983.7758 or visit

Rails to Ales, Mount Rainier Railroad, Sept. 30 and Oct. 1

Rails to Ales features various craft breweries that use Pacific Northwest hops and ferment their delicious beverages across Washington State. Take an experiential journey on the Eastern Railway of the Milwaukee Road and enjoy beer, rails and the forests and foothills of Mt. Rainier, all in one afternoon. Sample various Washington craft beers and converse with brewers on board and at the historic logging camp destination.  Select Washington breweries will provide beers to sample, including porters, stouts, IPAs, Hefeweizens, sour ales and wit biers. Board your coach from the platform at the historic Elbe Depot, and enjoy the ride through the Nisqually Valley and across rivers and streams in the foothills of Mt. Rainier. As you ride, you will be introduced to the breweries and enjoy a light sampling of the various beverages you can expect to learn more about at the event site. For more info, visit

Take your pick or try them all -- there are plenty of activities to fill your fall calendar and give you the opportunity to explore the area.

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