The autumn is now well and truly underway, but that doesn’t mean we have to stay cooped up at home. Here are some of the top family-friendly Essex events that are happening this weekend.

What’s On – Saturday 29th October and Sunday 30th October 2016

Pick Your Own – Pumpkin Patch and Maize Maze
Every weekend until Halloween, from 10.00am-4.00pm
The Pumpkin Patch, Green Lane, Aldham, Essex CO6 3PR
Bensons Farm, Wash Road, Laindon, Essex, SS15 4BP
We are delighted to announce that the long awaited pumpkin patch and maize maze have arrived! This year we are bigger and better than ever with pick your own pumpkins, sweetcorn, a maize trail and game zone! We even have food stalls for you to enjoy! P.S Remember our farm is a muddy field so please check our website and social media for weather updates before you come!

Spook Nights at Barleylands
Fri 28 Oct 2016 – Sat 29 Oct 2016, 6.30pm-9.00pm
Barleylands Farm, Barleylands Road, Billericay CM11 2UD
Especially for Halloween join Barleylands famous Spooky Nights for tot to preteens on Friday 28th & Saturday 29th October.

The Nutty Professors Halloween Disaster Trail at Highwoods Country Park
Sat 29 Oct 2016, varying start times between 7.20pm and 8.10pm
Visitor Centre, Turner Road, Colchester, Essex, CO4 5JR
Are you brave enough to save the world from the evil forces accidently created by the High Woods Country Park Nutty Professor? Come and find out in the atmospheric setting of the Park at night! Meet the Professors assistant at the Visitor Centre to receive the clues needed to find the escaped zombies and find the secret formula to save the world! Please note the last section of the trail is quite scary and fake blood riddled so not suitable for young children!! Recover with hot soup and a roll at the Visitor Centre when you finish. Suitable age 7+
Cost: £6 per adult, £4 per child

Halloween Self-Guided Trail at Highwoods Country Park
Sat 29 Oct and Sun 30 Oct 2016, varying start times between 7.20pm and 8.10pm
Visitor Centre, Turner Road, Colchester, Essex, CO4 5JR
Follow the map around the park and try to solve our Halloween puzzle. If you are in fancy dress you will get a sweet treat at the end!
Cost: £1 per child

Halloween Spooky Night at Parndon Woods
Sat 29 Oct 2016, 3.00pm-7.00pm
Harlow Nature Reserve, Harlow, Essex, CM19 4SF
Are you brave enough to walk our spooky trail through the woods? Join us for a ghoulish night of terrifying trails and ghoulish games as we celebrate Halloween. Competitions for best dressed and best pumpkins running throughout the night. Please remember to bring torches as it will be dark.
Cost: £3 per person. Booking essential

Halloween & Pumpkin Hunt at Blake House Craft Centre
Sat 29 Oct 2016, 10.00am-5.00pm
Blake End, Braintree, Essex, CM77 6RA
Halloween comes to Blake House Craft Centre, complete with its own Pumpkin Hunt. Children are invited to join in for two special days of spooktacular fun over half term for the fourth year running. In addition to a pumpkin hunt around the craft centre shops, there will also be other activities and competitions for kids taking place!
Cost: Free entry

Comedy Club 4 Kids at Chelmsford’s Cramphorn Theatre
Sat 29 Oct 2016, 2.00pm
Fairfield Road, Chelmsford, Essex, CM1 1JG Since 2005, the Comedy Club 4 Kids has been getting the best stand-ups and sketch acts from the international circuit to do their thing for an audience of children and their families… but without the rude bits! It’s just like a normal comedy club, but it’s on in the day, kids are allowed in, and thus there is a higher than usual chance of heckles like “why is that your face!?” Recommended age: 6 years+.
Cost: £8

Sat 29 Oct 2016, 11.00am & 1.00pm
Harlow Playhouse, Playhouse Square, Harlow, Essex, CM20 1LS
Bring the freewheeling vibe of a great festival to your kids this Half-Term, combining top-class music, brilliant song and dance routines, and wonderful storytelling. It’s an education of sensations, and a festival of fun on your doorstep. It’s Glastonbabies- the outstanding immersive experience.
Age guidance- 2 to 8 years old.
Cost: £6

Spooky Day Out with Thomas at East Anglian Railway Museum
Sat 29 Oct 2016 – Sun 30 Oct 2016, 10.00am-4.30pm
Chappel and Wakes Colne Station, Wakes Colne, Essex, CO6 2DS
Things get a little spooky with Thomas and his friends this Halloween, so come and join in with some ghoulish fun! A variety of activities will also be taking place all day including the Imagination Station which offers a wide range of children’s activities, from Circus Skills, Punch & Judy, Colouring Competition, engine outline rubbing, playtables with plasticine, temporary Thomas tattoos, reading books and much more.
Cost: Adults: £13.00, Children (2-15): £9.00 (Booking fees apply)

Operating Day at Colne Valley Railway
Sat 29 Oct and Sun 30 Oct 2016, 10.30am-5.00pm (last admission 3.30pm)
Colne Valley Railway, Castle Hedingham, Halstead, Essex, CO9 3DZ
Heritage Diesel Railcar or Diesel hauled passenger trains.
Cost: Adults £9, Seniors £7, Child £5 or Family £26 (2 Adults & up to 2 Children), Dogs £2

Halloween – Spooky Science & Magic
Sun 30 Oct 2016, 10am – 4pm
Museum of Power, Hatfield Road, Langford, CM9 6QA
Childrens Hands On activities with Halloween fun, Story Teller and Wacky Demonstations
Cost: Adults £6.00 Child £2.50

Come and Climb – Drop In Workshops at Rainham Marshes
Sun 30 Oct 2016, 1.00pm-3.00pm
The Visitor Centre, New Tank Hill Road, Purfleet, Essex, RM19 1SZ
Clamber, climb, explore and enjoy at RSPB Rainham Marshes boulders! Feeling adventurous? Come and explore our nature inspired climbing activities within the reserve. Try slacklining to test your balance, and climbing on our boulders to test out your strength on the variety of ascents and descents to the reserves soothing soundtrack of birds and other wildlife. Challenge yourself by seeing how high you can get and have a go at some of the games and activities on offer. Our climbing experts will be on hand so don’t worry if you’ve never tried climbing before!
Cost: £2 per person

Coalhouse Open Day in Tilbury
Sun 30 October 2016, 11.00am-5.00pm (last admission 4.00pm)
Coalhouse Fort Project, Princess Margaret Road, East Tilbury, Tilbury, Essex, RM18 8PB
An open day at the historical Fort. Constructed between 1861 and 1874, the Fort was built to defend the Thames from a potential invasion by France.
Cost: £4 adults, £3 60+, 50p child age 5-15 years, under 5’s FREE