Since Halloween weekends are so special at Jellystone Park, we checked in with our friends at family travel site, Kidventurous. They spent a weekend in a deluxe cabin at the Jellystone Park in Luray, Virginia, a short drive from foliage-filled Shenandoah National Park during one of the park’s costume- and candy-filled Halloween weekends last year. Please note that not all of the activities mentioned below are available at every Jellystone Park location and that many Halloween activities are being adjusted this year to accommodate social distancing best practices. Please contact the specific location you’re interested in visiting for details regarding their Halloween activities.
Here’s what mom, Erin, said her family loved most about Halloween Weekends at Jellystone Park:
- Costume Contests. Who doesn’t love winning? Seriously nobody. So pack your favorite, most winning costumes for a costume contest with real prizes. Not just candy and stickers, but trophies. As in trophies to show off the next day at school or work (both my kids came home with trophies). Whether you want to vie for most original, most creative, or best group costumes, get in it to win it. Even pets can compete.
- Outdoor Movies. We loved snuggling up under our cozy blankets at the campground’s outdoor movie theatre for an after-dark family friendly feature. A Halloween-theme movie on a big outdoor screen a short walk from our cabin was the perfect way to end a fun fall day.
- “Hey Hey” Wagon Rides. They don’t just have hay rides at Jellystone Park, they have “hey hey” rides with the Yogi Bear characters. You might not find actual hay on this ride, but you will be able to enjoy calm breezes as a massive wagon is pulled around the campground. The Yogi Bear characters will even pose for photos after the fun-filled family ride.
- Trick-or-Treating. This may be the most important part of Halloween Weekends at the campground. Every weekend there are spooktacular family activities, including trick-or-treating across the campground. Since the Jellystone Park in Luray is so massive, we had a golf cart to preserve our energy as we loaded up with candy across the tent, cabin, and RV sites.
- Arts & Crafts. You’ll find loads of arts and crafts activities across the campground, like ceramic painting and making tie-dye t-shirts. An extra fee applies, but it was totally worth it to take home some new – and now tie-dyed – swag that shows we were at Jellystone Park.
- Off-Grid Adventures. There are plenty of organized campground activities, like hay rides (er, “hey hey” rides) and craft-making, but there is plenty of off-site fun to be had at many locations too, like family hiking for vibrant foliage views (we went on several hikes at Shenandoah National Park), kayaking at local lakes and reservoirs, and fishing in nearby streams.
- Golf Carts. It’s always more fun to have a golf cart at a Jellystone Park campground, but it’s even more fun on Halloween Weekends when guests staying in tents, RVs and cabins get crafty and creative with their digs. We loaded up in our golf cart and were on the hunt for inflatable ghosts, spooky skeletons, massive spider webs and creepy animatronics. So fun.
- Comfy Stays of All Types. One great reason to stay at Jellystone Park at any time of year, including Halloween, is the variety of stays you’ll find, including RV sites, deluxe cabins and tent sites, even glamping yurts and RV rentals at some locations. It’s not hard to get comfy on a cool fall weekend, especially after sticky s’mores and a movie under the stars.
While Halloween Weekends are among the most popular and special times of the year at the 75+ Jellystone Park locations across the United States and Canada, please remember that activities and amenities are always subject to change based on weather and local health guidelines.