By Michilea Patterson, The Mercury
From fruit picking to costumed fitness dance classes, the community can celebrate the season while staying fit at the same time. Area events include fall festivals as well as Halloween activities that keep it happy and healthy.
Here’s a sampling of what’s planned in the region:
FRECON FARMS PICKING SEASON IN BOYERTOWN, ALL MONTH LONG
The community is invited to pick their own fruit every Wednesday through Sunday until Oct. 30. There are pumpkins, apples, pears, and sunflowers. There is also cider, a bakery and live music on the weekends. Frecon Farms is located at 501 S. Reading Ave. For more information, visit www.freconfarms.com or call 610-367-6200.
FAMILY NIGHT HIKE IN UPPER POTTSGROVE, SATURDAY
The theme of this family-friendly event is Marvelous Monsters. Families will walk along the candle-lit trail of the Althouse Arboretum while listening to storytellers. There will also be other children activities, games and a bonfire with marshmallows. The event will is this Saturday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The cost is $2.50 per person and parking will be at Hillside Aquatic Club, 134 W. Moyer Road. For more information, visit the Facebook page www.facebook.com/events/1702471549996062 or the website althousearboretum.org.
MOUNTAIN BY MOONLIGHT IN REINHOLDS, OCT. 15, 21 AND 22
The South Mountain YMCA Camps are offering these fun community family-friendly events. There will haunted hay rides, carnival games, glow stick zip lining and more. The event is from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. each day. The address is 201 Cushion Peak Road. Parking is free but tickets will need to be purchased for activities. Tickets are $1 each or 12 for $10. For more information, visit www.smymca.org/events-calendar or call 610-670-2267.
HAUNTS ON HIGH IN POTTSTOWN, SATURDAY
Pottstown businesses and organizations will be coming together to offer families a fun Halloween-event. Haunts on High will be downtown Pottstown along High Street from noon to 4 p.m. The activities are free for kids participating in costumes and geared toward those 12 and under. There will be a safe trick-or-treat event, face paintings, a fundraiser for Art Fusion and more. During the event, Pottstown will have their 1st Annual Badminton Rumble. The rumble will include a free kids clinic as well as competitions for teams and individuals. The Mosaic Community Gardens will also be part of Haunts on High. Attendees will be encouraged to visit the gardens on Chestnut Street for their Annual Fall Festival to celebrate the end of the season. For more information, visit the Facebook event page www.facebook.com/events/971879752934124.
PUMPKIN DAYS IN MEDIA, SATURDAY AND SUNDAY
This annual event is held at the Tyler Arboretum, 515 Painter Road. The event will include a bounce house, inflatable obstacle course, a pumpkin patch, pumpkin racing, hay rides, food and lots more. It’s from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on both days. Arboretum members have free admission, adults are $11, seniors are $9 and children are $7. Parking will be at the Penn State Branywine and shuttles will bus people to and from the arboretum. For more information, visit the Facebook page www.facebook.com/events/1773048532983294 or the website www.tylerarboretum.org.
APPLE PICKING IN MEDIA, SUNDAY
Temple University Office of Sustainability is offering families an afternoon of apple picking at Linvilla Orchards at noon Sunday. Linvilla is a 300-acre family farm located at 137 W. Knowlton Road. For more information about the event or to register, visit events.temple.edu/apple-picking-at-linvilla-orchard.
SPOOKY MINI GOLF IN POTTSTOWN, OCT. 21, 22, 23, 28, 29 AND 30
Spooky golf will be available at the Manatawny Green Miniature Golf course on several days in October from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. The cost is $6 per player. People that bring their ticket stub from the Temple of Terror will get $2 off. For more information, visit www.facebook.com/ManatawnyGreen or call 610-970-6607.
ZUMBAWEEN EVENT IN CHESTER, OCT. 23
This event will include Zumba Halloween fun and costumes. There will be several instructors teaching fitness dance classes. The event is Oct. 23 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack. The address is 777 Harrah’s Blvd. in Chester. Tickets are $20 if pre-ordered and $30 at the door. For more information, visit the Facebook event pagewww.facebook.com/events/177867599289265.
HAUNTED WOODS HIKE IN UPPER POTTSGROVE, OCT. 29
If you want to combine a scare factor with outdoor fitness then attend the Althouse Arboretum’s Haunted House event. The community is invited to come in their best costumes then watch a classic horror movie. Also people will have the option to travel through the arboretum’s haunted woods. The night hike is perfect for thrill seekers. The Haunted Woods event is Oct. 29 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the arboretum, 1794 Gilbertsville Road. The cost is $5. For more information about the Haunted Woods event, visit the Facebook page www.facebook.com/events/1270587919640431 or the websitealthousearboretum.org.
TRICK OR TROT 5K & 1 MILE WALK IN POTTSTOWN, OCT. 29
The third annual ACA 5K will have a Trick or Trot theme this year. Proceeds benefit the Adopt a Room Program at the Philadelphia Ronald McDonald House. Participants are encouraged to wear costumes and trick or treating will be available for children along the course trail. The event will also include food and drinks. The Trick or Trot event will be on Oct. 29 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Riverfront Park, 140 College Drive. For more information, visit the Facebook event pagewww.facebook.com/events/299447583772432.
HALLOWEEN ZUMBA PARTY IN WYOMISSING, OCT. 30
This glow-in-the-dark Zumba party is costumes optional. The cost is $10 at the door. All proceeds benefit the Animal Rescue League. Participants that donate an item to the rescue league will receive free glow gear. The event will have several instructors, raffles and more. It’s from noon to 1:30 p.m. on Oct. 30 at Down Under Sports & Fitness, 801 Hill Avenue. For more information, visitwww.meetup.com/FunBerks/events/234531458.
SAFETY TIPS TO KEEP IN MIND FOR HALLOWEEN
1. Walk safely on Halloween. Cross the street at corners and use traffic signals. Walk along sidewalks and paths whenever possible. Children 12 and under shouldn’t be alone at night without an adult. Kids older than 12 should try to stick to familiar areas when trick-or-treating.
2. Make sure costumes are safe. Decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape to make it easier to see at night. Choose face paint instead of masks so it doesn’t obstruct the child’s vision. Make sure costumes are the right size or don’t have long trailing fabric to prevent falling.
3. Always inspect decorations before using for cracked or frayed wires. Use lights and decorations that are approved safe by a nationally recognized testing lab.
Source: Safe Kids Worldwide and the Electrical Safety Foundation International.
TIPS FOR SAFE AND HEALTHY HALLOWEEN TREATS
1. Make sure children eat a good meal before parties or trick-or-treating so they won’t want to fill up on candy.
2. Purchase non-food treats when have a Halloween party such as coloring books, pens and pencils.
3. Also hand small toys instead of Halloween candy like bracelet kits or bubbles. These items can usually be found in bulk just like candy.
4. Once home from trick-or-treating, sort and check collected treats. Closely examine everything and throw away any spoiled, unwrapped or suspicious items.
5. A healthier alternative to candy corn is a mini box of raisins which can be mixed with cereal or yogurt.
6. Another healthy treat can be drawing jack-o-lantern faces on small oranges like tangelos.
7. Mini bags of pretzels, popcorn or crackers can be a healthy alternative to candy and a whole-grain option.
Source: American Academy of Pediatrics and Pottstown Mosaic community garden manager Laura Washington. For a 2016 list of Halloween safety tips, check http://www.aap.org.