*I just want to thank the people of Knott’s Berry Farm for inviting the Single Dad’s Guide to Life to be a part of the spooktakular fun of Knott’s Spooky Farm.  I was provided free tickets to the event as well as front of the line passes to the entertainment.  Nevertheless, all of the views expressed herein are my own.

Halloween generates over 8 billion dollars of candy sales alone.  And it might generate another 100 million chills and thrills while it’s at it.  As a parent, this means a Halloween nightmare.  Between the dental bills, the therapy for our kid’s nightmares and our burgeoning belly because of all the candy we sneak from our kid’s Halloween stash, Halloween presents a load of problems.  And for those of us whose children aren’t ready for the scares just yet (or don’t have thousands of dollars to shell out in therapy bills), we have to do a lot of research to figure out what’s out there our children can attend.  It’s a yearly struggle.  Well I have finally found something with the right mix of thrills and still geared to the younger set that I can feel happy to take my daughter to: Knott’s Spooky Farm.

I know when it comes to Halloween Haunts and Knott’s Berry Farm, everyone thinks of Knott’s Scary Farm first.  While I do love Knott’s Scary Farm, and there is something so nostalgic about it as the year it was christened is the year I was born, Knott’s Scary Farm is just a little too much for my daughter right this moment.  So about four years ago, when I first heard they were offering an alternative for the kids during the day, I was excited to see what they had out there.

Unfortunately, I was very disappointed the first time I visited their kid’s alternative to Scary Farm.  They didn’t really have any people out there in costume.  They did have some gross looking bugs out there in cases.  And the trick or treating “maze” could hardly have been called a maze.  It consisted of one thing of candy out there for the kids to get from.  Let’s just say that when a friend of mine asked me a couple of years ago to go back, my daughter and I looked at her like she was asking us to go to the dentist.  It’s not that we don’t love Knott’s Berry Farm.  But we just figured the only thing they did well for the season was scare the hell out of you.

I have to admit that when I was invited to go to Knott’s Spooky Farm, I came at it with a skeptical eye.  I wasn’t even really sure that I wanted to go.  But after reading a little bit into it, and discussing about it with my daughter, we figured we would give it one last shot.  Besides, my daughter is at the cusp age where she won’t be invited to do the kids things much anymore.  So we were going leave her kid years with a bang.  At least we hoped we would.

I have to say that Spooky Farm was better than I could have possibly imagined.  They had so many different things going on for the kids that it really took most of the day to be able to do them.  And they could join in and participate in the “scary” comings and goings of the Peanuts crew, among many others there to celebrate the season.  What makes Knott’s Spooky Farm great?  Why did we love it so much?  Check out the seven reasons why Knott’s Spooky Farm is such a great Halloween alternative for the kids.

Seven Reasons You Need To Take Your Kids To Knott’s Spooky Farm

1)  The Cost –

For those of you with Annual Passes to Knott’s, you know about all of the great benefits to joining in on the fun for such a great price and all of the amazing things they have there.  But for those of you who don’t, I just have to say that Knott’s has a ton of things that you can do relatively cheaply.  And the great thing about Spooky Farm is that it doesn’t come with the added costs of their scarier brothers.  They don’t gouge you on parking.  You can do all of the great things that you can at Knott’s any other time of year.  And you get all of the added attractions that are Halloween only Haunts that kids can participate in.  You can’t beat it for amusement park Halloween fun for kids.

2)  Trick Or Treating –

They really upped their game this year and added Trick or Treat Spots all throughout the Ghost town area.  And they don’t cheap out on the type of candy that they give out either.   It might not be as much as some of their other competitors.  But I think it is just the right amount without worrying about the dental bills that will be occurring in their near future.   Plus, who doesn’t want another excuse to dress up and do some Trick Or Treating?  Heck!  I would do it myself if I could.  Speaking of which . . .

3) Day Of The Dead Celebration –

Come join in as Knott’s adds to the festivities with a Day of the Dead celebration in the Fiesta Village.  Experience different performances by groups, artist renditions and enjoy all of the lovely activities they have going on.   Just come and celebrate your ancestors as Spooky Farm celebrates the festival in style.  Have a ton of fun.  Plus, don’t forget to remember your own ancestors along the way.

4) The Haunting Shows –

Ok, maybe they aren’t as frightening as I make it out to be.  But the shows are all part of the fun.  Between the Camp Snoopy Show, the Monsters are coming Charlie Brown as the whole Peanut’s gang gets into the act and the Ghastly Gallery having a haunting good time showing kids about art, Knott’s has upped its show game and made it a real treat for the kids.  Plus when you go to the Ghostly Gallery (Boardwalk Ballroom), you can learn to draw, or you can become part of the art itself.  Definitely worth checking out.

5)  The Ghost Town Livery Stable –

Knott’s has converted the horse corral into an animal lovers delight.  From their Day of the Dead themed horse to the rats, snakes and various other creatures they have haunting the bard, you can get up close and personal with the animals . . . and not just fake ones.  The snake they had in there was massive.  It’s definitely something the young ones will want to check out.  And I love the fact Knott’s made it so hands on for the kids.

6)  The Ghost Town Haunts –

Maybe you are not having a crazy evil witch jumping out at you from behind a fog bank.  Or a maniacal gorilla set to attack you and all of your friends.  And it’s probably that there will not be any zombies chasing after you out for your brains.  But you do have the more happy haunting variety.  And what better place to find happy haunts than at Knott’s Ghost Town?  They are creeping around the jail, the barn, the school and all manner of places throughout Ghost Town.  And they will engage with your kids without having to worry about the therapy bills later.  So make sure to look around Ghost Town other than for more candy.

7)  The Halloween Themed Rides –

There is a cute ride for the really young ones in Camp Snoopy that takes you on a trek through camp spooky.  Find live berries running out into the field.  Or watch Snoopy try to train ghosts how to build a big camp fire.  Every Peanut’s gang member gets in on the act and Linus narrates it all for us.  A cute little ride.  And for those a little older, take your kids out to the Log Ride to join in on the Halloween Hootenanny.  The ride’s residents delight in letting their gruesome freak flag fly as you are quickly greeted by the shadow of a man turning into a werewolf.  Quickly you descend into Aliens crash landing and eventually you are haunted by the likes of giant Vampire Bats.  With original music created by Krazy Kirk and the Hillbillies, it’s a frightening good time for the youngsters.

Honorable Mention:

There are plenty of other great things in the park like the pumpkin patch where you can decorate pumpkins or the great Peanut’s costume contest.  But look out.  Who knows whether a Great Pumpkin could come out?

Other Things Of Note:

Visit the website here for Knott’s Spooky Farm as it is only being held on the weekends leading up to Halloween so there are only a few weekends left to enjoy all of the festivities.  But if you want to take your kids to enjoy some happy haunts as well as participate in a ton of fun activities for Halloween, there is nothing quite like going to Knott’s for their Halloween time extravaganza.  My daughter and I had an amazing time.  We will probably be heading back again before it goes away.  And what bigger and better endorsement is that?

Continue The Conversation –

So what haunting things do they have for kids right around where you are?  What are some of your favorite places to take your kids for Halloween? And if you have been to Knott’s, have you been to Spooky Farm?  If not, why not?  And if so, what was your favorite part?

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If you liked this post, please like this post at the end, and don’t forget to follow me here at the Guide.  And check out some of my other posts about Knott’s and all of the happenings they have there.  All email subscribers will get the bi-weekly newsletter for The Single Dad’s Guide to Life.  Out of which you will get access to the Dad Rules.  These are ten rules that ever dad should know about.  Thank you for stopping by.

Until next time, you and yours have a howling good time.

David Elliott, Single Dad’s Guide to Life