Good thing we don't have to worry about hay fever too much longer, because the annual Belvedere Plantations Harvest Festival is approaching, and hay rides are a must.
On the farm, all 645 acres of it, the festival will have all shapes and sizes of pumpkins, corn mazes, zip lines and hayrides -- all your fall festival needs in one stop.
Slither down the pumpkin mountain slide (sorry, it's not actually made of pumpkins), a manmade slide built on a hill, or have a go at the jumping pillow which is sort of like an extra-large trampoline -- the kids should love this.
Watch the racing pigs, or kick back with hayrides every hour. You can even reserve your very own campfire at night to roast marshmallows and make s'mores, if you like that sort of thing (and everyone likes that sort of thing).
At the pumpkin patch, plenty of homegrown pumpkins await your arrival. Feel free to drill holes in them
in your process of converting them into freakishly ghoulish monsters for Halloween. The standard orange pumpkins are by weight at 65 cents/pound or try the all-you-can-carry option for $29.99.
The festival also has grownup-oriented things like Adventures in Grocery Shopping, where adults ravish through aisles of food to find things they want to eat. OK, that may be a fake activity, but the fest does have plenty of homemade jams, candy and baked pies for the taking (or buying, if you want to make it legal) in the farm's bakery.
The Harvest Festival (1410 Belvedere Drive, Fredericksburg, Va.) begins Saturday, Sept. 21 and runs through Sunday, Nov. 3. Hours are Saturdays 10 a.m.-10 p.m., Sundays 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and Tuesdays-Fridays 9:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Tickets prices vary; check online
for current pricing.