No shortage of options for Fairfax residents looking to get their scare on
By Keith Loria
Special to the Times
If you are looking for some frightening fun things to do this Halloween season, you won’t have to travel far for a fantastic Halloween thrill, as Fairfax has a host of haunted houses and other spooky events for both young and old to enjoy.
Whether you are looking to be scared out of your wits or just want a more mellow freight, there are plenty of ghosts, zombies and other creatures of the night ready to make your Halloween nightmares come true.
Here’s a look at some of the best places to get your scream on.
Fields of Fear
Fridays and Saturdays until Nov. 3 beginning at 7:30 p.m.
15621 Braddock Rd., Centreville
Every year, Cox Farms presents a field of terror, featuring more than 20 acres of frightening adventures for those who dare to take a walk through the night.
Fields of Fear includes a dark side hayride, Farmageddon, Alien Thunder, bonfires and a giant torchlit slide. There’s also a haunted library, a bug room, a troll bridge and lots of other suspenseful surprises.
“I went with a bunch of my friends last year and we were all having a really good time, but then a clown jumped out at the end and it really ended with a good scare,” said Mae Parris, a sophomore at Oakton High School. “I was surprised at how scary it all really way. Scary and fun.”
The farm invites people to enter its Cornightmare walk-through cornfield terrors, with Claustrophobia, Vortex, Crypt and more.
Bradley Farm Haunted House
Haunted house open 6 to 10 p.m. Oct. 26 and Oct. 27
Children’s haunted house open 1 to 5 p.m. Oct. 27
13159 New Parkland Dr., Herndon
For the sixth edition of the popular Herndon haunted house, co-creators Lisa Kelly and Sarah Bermingham decided to go with a theme of “Haunted Virginia.”
“We’ll be using local legends throughout Virginia in the house in some scary capacity,” Kelly said. “We are not a gory thing, we are more theatrical, but we provide a really great scare.”
Last year, snow caused a less-than-stellar turnout, but the haunted house is more prepared this year with tents to keep out the cold, although the dark and scary scenes are intended to send shivers up your spine.
“The haunted house is a guided tour with live actors and over the years we learned what works and how to really scare people inside the small venue,” Kelly said. “We’ll have live bands, magicians, live dancers, and the most important thing is that 100 percent of the proceeds goes to Herndon-Reston FISH.”
In addition to the regular haunted house, a special kid’s version will be held on Saturday afternoon, with the first 500 children who attend getting a free backpack.
“They go through about a dozen monster stations, but the monsters aren’t scary at all,” Kelly said. “They trick-or-treat and get free kids meals or toys or candy bags.”
Clifton Haunted Trail
7 to 10 p.m. Oct. 27
Chapel St., Clifton
For real chills and thrills, take a walk through the mile-long path of the Clifton Haunted Trail, which winds through Clifton’s Eight-Acre Buckley Park.
“This is our 13th year and it’s run entirely by volunteer residents of the Clifton community, who have worked hard to make sure this is something memorable,” said John Powell, a councilman in Clifton who serves as manager of the trail. “We have 21 different skits and each is designed to terrify and make the night fun.”
The haunted trail includes creative spooky sights and scary movie re-enactments from Halloween favorites, with numerous props and lighting effects thrown in for good measure.
Skits can include anything from a tale of zombies, witches, monsters or one that recounts the legend of the infamous Pope’s Head Creek Bridge.
“You are in the woods and it’s dark and there’s nothing but trees … and then the scary components of the trail hit and really scare people,” Powell said. “There are some big surprises and people have a good time.”
Parking is free of charge and will be available at the Clifton Floodplain, Clifton Elementary School and Clifton House Shops, where hayrides will take and pick up trail-goers. It is not recommended for children.
Scary stuff for the kids
For those looking for a fun time for their kids, without wanting them to scar them from Halloween forever, here are some “haunted” Halloween happenings that are more about the fun than the fright.
Haunted Meadow Wagon Rides
7 to 10 p.m. Oct. 26
E.C. Lawrence Park
5235 Walney Road, Chantilly
Hearing the clickety-clack of a wagon wheel as you take a moonlit ride might seem like a soothing sound, but don’t get too comfortable, as the Haunted Meadow Wagon Rides are designed to provide some chilling thrills.
Rides are presented to children 8 and over through the Haunted Meadow at E.C. Lawrence Park. Afterwards, participants are invited to watch a scary movie, pay a visit to the House of Reptiles and roast some marshmallows by the fire.
The cost is $6 for children under 12 and $8 for adults. Children must be accompanied by an adult.
The Ghost Train
11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Oct. 27 and Oct. 28
Burke Lake Park
7315 Ox Road, Fairfax Station
This annual train ride, presented by the Annandale campus of North Virginia Community College, lets children take a ride through the Burke Lake Park forest, which is decorated for Halloween.
“It’s aimed towards younger children and is not a scary thing at all,” said Charlie Reagle, manager of the park. “It’s a lot of fun and lets kids get into the Halloween spirit.”
Costumed characters of the cartoon variety will be on hand and fun Halloween songs will be hears throughout the ride.
Children are encouraged to come in costume and other activities, such as face painting will be available.
Air & Scare
2 to 8 p.m. Oct. 27
Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, 14390 Air and Space Museum Parkway, Chantilly
Discover the spooky side of air and space at the Udvar-Hazy Center’s seventh annual Air & Scare.
The day includes making creepy crafts, performing spooky science experiments and other fun Halloween activities. There’s also some trick-or-treating for the little ones.