September is here and the cooler weather has arrived! Hello hoodies, boots, and pumpkin everything! Fall is a wonderful season to take the whole family out for some fun outdoor activities as we say good-bye to the heat of summer. I have rounded up a list of several family-friendly Reno Fall Activities to help you plan your next family outing. Most of these events I have personally taken my family to and continue to do year after year. Read on for the events, hours of operation, and my tips for a low stress experience!
The Great Reno Balloon Race is the world’s largest free hot-air ballooning event. During three days in early September, you can look up into the Reno skies and see a rainbow of hot air balloons soaring about. This is a fantastic, free-to-the-public event that’s fun for the whole family. Watching the glowing balloons fill with air and float up into the sky as the sun rises is magical for kids and adults alike.
The balloon races are located at Rancho San Rafael Park near the University of Nevada Reno. Gates open at 3:30am on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and the hot air balloon Glow Show & Dawn Patrol begins at 5:00am. The mass ascension of hot air balloons is at 7:00am each day and is truly a spectacular sight to watch.
You may have to park a little ways away from the park entrance so I recommend arriving early to give you plenty of time to walk to the park. Check out this link for information on free parking.
If you have littles bring a stroller or a wagon and plenty of layers and blankets to keep out the pre-dawn chill. Hot chocolate (and coffee for the parents) is also a must! Bring your own or you can purchase warm drinks, food, and souvenirs from the vendor booths at the event.
Andelin Family Farm is a family-owned farm located in Spanish Springs off of Pyramid Highway. They have a wide variety of family-friendly fall activities and are open from the last week of September through the first week of November. Activities include a pumpkin patch, a large corn maze, animal exhibits, hayrides and other barnyard activities. There is also zombie paintball and a haunted corn creeper maze for the older kids and adults.
Plan to spend several hours there and wear clothes and shoes that you don’t mind getting a little dirty. Layers are also a great idea as it can be windy & chilly out there as the weather changes.
For prices and days open, check them out at this link.
Ferrari Farms is a family-run farm located in Reno off of Mill Street. The farm is over 100 years old and is celebrating their 25th annual Fall Festival this year. They have a pumpkin patch, corn maze, hayrides, and a bounce house for the littles. They are open for the season from September 30th – October 31st. This is a great option if you want to spend just a couple hours at the farm and grab some pumpkins to make your own jack-o-lanterns.
Animal Ark is a 38 acre wildlife sanctuary located in the Northern Nevada foothills off of Red Rock Road. This animal sanctuary houses native wildlife as well as exotic animals. You will see bears, bobcats, and mountain lions as well as jaguars, tigers, and cheetahs. You can also check out their website ahead of time for the feeding schedules for several of their animals.
The Animal Ark is open as weather permits Tuesday-Sunday from 10:00am-4:30pm. Tickets can be purchased online ahead of time. Bring a picnic and enjoy lunch at their large picnic and playground area during your visit. Strollers are permitted but due to the dirt path they recommend strollers with large jogging wheels that can handle rougher terrain.
They also host a Fall Festival event at the end of October. This event will be open to the public and is a family friendly festival filled with sweet treats, trick or treating for kids, animal antics and more! All the animal residents will get a pumpkin filled with food/treats with the animals out on exhibit with their treat. Visit their website to for more information and to purchase tickets.
Representing over 50 local, family farms, the Apple Hill Growers have now grown to include unique fruit & vegetable farms, bakeshops, wineries, a Bed & Breakfast Inn, flower gardens, and Christmas tree farms.
While Apple Hill is located in California, it is only a couple hours from Reno and many Northern Nevada families make the annual drive to the Apple Hill farms for a fun day or weekend of apple picking and fall treats.
The best time for apple picking is throughout the months of September and October, depending on the apple variety. Plan to leave early in the day so you have plenty of time to visit several farms. Many of the local farms close by 4:00 or 5:00pm. Check out their website and list of farms to plan your stops ahead of time. They even have an app that you can download to have all the information on your smartphone.
With the cooler weather and beautiful colors, fall is a great time to get the family outside and with these Reno Fall Activities, you will be on your way to making amazing memories with your family in no time!
I’m a local photographer and mom and I love getting to work with local families, whether I’m sharing recommendations on fun family activities or helping families plan a gorgeous photo session. Fall is the perfect time to get updated family photos, just in time for those holiday cards and gifts for the family! I specialize in maternity, newborn, and family pictures for locals all across Northern Nevada. If you’ve been thinking about booking some pictures for your family, I have a few dates of Fall Family Petite Sessions this fall that still have spots open for booking, or we can chat so I can tell you more about my process. Contact me today to see if we’ll be a great match!