Fall Fun in Hendricks County, Danville

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Lose yourself in the fun - on foot, horseback or driving

Narrowing down all of the festivals, activities and other fall attractions in Hendricks County can prove to be a difficult task because of the sheer number of amazing things to see and do.

A good starting point is Beasley’s Apple Orchard, a must-see autumn institution, and its annual Heartland Apple Festival in Danville. This year’s festival spans two weekends Oct. 6-7 and 13-14. Featured in Indianapolis Monthly magazine as one of “50 Things Every Hoosier Must Do!” visitors can tour the orchard, take a hayride to the pumpkin patch, buy fresh produce and other goods in a Civil War-era barn turned rustic market or wind their way through a huge corn maze.

Hendricks County boasts plenty of other fun fall festivals including the Quaker Day Festival Sept. 21-22 in Plainfield which celebrates that community’s heritage with a parade, carnival rides and more. On Sept. 28, Chateau Thomas Winery in Plainfield, which is known for its award-winning wines and provides daily tastings and tours, hosts the Grape Harvest Festival and Hog Roast. Beginning Oct. 6, the Historic Hendricks County Courthouse Square becomes a spot that repels fowl but attracts people as the annual Scarecrow Festival brings out the creative side in local businesses as they try to land their best haymakers. The festival begins with a community celebration on Oct. 6 and the scarecrows remain on the square for all to see throughout the month. Also, make sure you stick around for the Film Festival of Hendricks County that same weekend.

Another popular year-round Hendricks County attraction will have a fall twist this year. The self-directed, self-guided  Rural Routes to Main Street Cultural Trail driving tour takes visitors along the back roads of Hendricks County to meet local artisans and their shops and studios. A first-ever, spin-off event, the Hendricks County Artisan Marketplace on Oct. 13, will provide a new opportunity to showcase many of the trail’s artisans in one location at Primo West by Five Star Catering in Plainfield.

Into horseback riding? Fall presents the perfect opportunity for a ride through the woods. Home to the fourth largest concentration of horses and horse farms in the state, Hendricks County has plenty of spots to satisfy your inner cowboy. A good place to start is Natural Valley Ranch in Brownsburg, which is the perfect spot for both novice and experienced riders as it spans 70 scenic acres, and offers 30-, 60- and 90-minute guided trail rides along the banks of White Lick Creek.

If you want to view some beautiful fall color, McCloud Nature Park in North Salem is just far enough off the beaten path to still have that untouched natural beauty while being close enough to all the amenities any visitor would need. You’ll find endless Hendricks County dining options, shopping, fun attractions and wonderful, yet affordable, lodging options. In addition, now through Oct. 31, visitors to McCloud can experience the park’s free prairie maze.