The Haunted Pumpkin Garden at the New York Botanical Garden is just haunted enough to be fun for the preschool set. In true NY Botanical Garden fashion, the Everett Children’s Adventure Garden is decorated with whimsical carved pumpkin sculptures of bugs, flowers, mushrooms, bats and other Halloween animals.
There’s a ton of ways to play on your own and there are some scheduled events on the weekends, too. We loved the playhouse covered in pumpkins, a pumpkin puppet theater complete with puppets for kids to create their own puppet shows and we never get tired of making the water in the fountain squirt by jumping on the ground.
There is also a windy path through a garden with mushroom and flower pumpkin sculptures, a maze with pumpkin sculptures and the rock play garden is decorated with more pumpkins. The rock garden is my daughter’s favorite place to play at the Botanical Garden, and I have a feeling we’re not alone. It’s always full of kids having a blast being kids.
On the weekends join a parade at 1pm and 3pm and during the week join the parade at 1:30pm in the Adventure Garden Discover Plaza. All week you can also decorate your own paper bag to collect fall leaves, plant buckwheat seeds to take home and feel like a real scientist sorting seeds and dissecting owl pellets. (My 5 year-old really got into this!)
More weekend events at the Haunted Pumpkin Garden:
Spooktacular Pumpkin Party:
On October 6, 7, and 8 at 12-5:30 pm, there will be live music, Halloween story readings and meet the largest bat in the world. Samples will be provided by Whole Foods and watch daily performances of Little People Live! and meet the characters. Get the full schedule here.
Pumpkin Carving Demonstrations:
October 6,7,8,13,27 and 28 from 11am-5pm.
Giant Pumpkin Carving Weekend:
October 20 and 21 (and on display for the rest of the month) Ray Villafane will carve giant pumpkins into zombies and other frightening creatures.
Master Card Budding Masters Pumpkin Carving Workshop for Kids:
October 20 from 1-5pm, kids (ages 8 – 15) will have the opportunity to create a giant pumpkin sculpture as a team which will then be on display as part of the Haunted Garden Exhibition. Tickets are $75. Find out more about this event and register here.
Spooky Nighttime Adventures:
October 20, 21, 26, 27, and 28; 6:30-8 p.m. Bring or borrow a flashlight and explore the sculptures as you trick-or-treat in the Adventure Garden after dark. All activities are designed for kids ages 5 – 12. Tickets are $20/non-member and $15/member.
The New York Botanical Garden: 2900 Southern Blvd, Bronx. Cost: All-Garden pass starts at $20 for adults and $8 for kids under 12. See prices by date here.