25 Inexpensive (or Free) Things to Do for Families in October

October 2, 2017

Pumpkin Patch FunVisit a pumpkin patch for farm fun with the kiddos this October.

It's already October, and you don't have to break the bank to have a great time this fall with the kiddos! Here are 25 great ideas for great affordable activities and outings in Marin and the Bay Area in October, all of which are free or really inexpensive. Keep in mind some of these activities require advance registration, so check before you go.

  1. Visit a local pumpkin patch for fall family fun.
  2. Visit the Legion of Honor in San Francisco for free on the first Tuesday of the month, October 3, 9:30 am–5:15 pm
  3. Admission to the Bay Area Discovery Museum is free on the first Wednesday of the month. October 4, 9 am–5 pm
  4. Watch the Blue Angels perform over San Francisco Bay during Fleet Week, October 6, 7, and 8, noon–4 pm
  5. Support San Rafael schools at the Heads Up Family Carnival. October 7, 10:30 am–4:30 pm
  6. Celebrate the harvest at the San Domenico Garden Faire. October 7, 11 am–2 pm
  7. See a Not-So-Scary Halloween Magic Show at Novato City Hall. October 7, 5:30–7 pm
  8. Take a fall family hike with the kids in Marin.
  9. Visit the firefighters at the annual Novato Fire District Open House. October 8, 10 am–1 pm
  10. Make crafts and meet animals at the Fall Family Farm Festival at Terrapin Crossroads. October 8, 2–6 pm
  11. Little ones can sing, dance and play instruments at Baby Time! San Rafael Library. October 10, 10:30–11 am
  12. Get hands-on with Crazy Science at the Fairfax Library. October 11, 4–5 pm
  13. Spend a Weekend Along the Farm Trails in Sonoma County. October 14 and 15
  14. The Civic Center Library is hosting a Costume Shop Day for kids! Come “shop” for a free Halloween costume! (Ages 2-12), October 14, 12–4 pm
  15. Gather around the campfire for a short talk, songs and a marshmallow roast at the Petaluma Adobe. October 14, 5:30–6:30 pm.
  16. Enjoy a magical day at the Marin Waldorf Children's Faire. October 15, 10 am–4 pm
  17. Learn about local agriculture at MALT Day at the Pumpkin Patch in Nicasio. October 15, 10 am–4 pm
  18. Bring the kiddos for a Not-So-Scary Halloween Show, Fairfax Library, October 19, 3–3:45 pm
  19. The Petaluma Mother's Club Fall Carnival offers fun for families with young children. October 21, 10 am–1 pm
  20. See the Halloween movie Hocus Pocus at the Pocket Park in Novato. October 21, 6:30 pm
  21. Novato's Scream on the Green IV promises spooky fun for all. October 27 and 28
  22. Join St. Raphael School for games and a haunted house at their Halloween Festival. October 28, noon–4 pm
  23. Take a graveyard stroll with Marin Parks rangers in San Rafael. October 28, 7–8:30 pm
  24. Explore Indian Tree Open Space Preserve with Nature for Kids. October 29, 10 am–1 pm
  25. Rock out with Charity and the Jam Band's Halloween Family Concert at the Park Chalet, San Francisco. October 29, 3–5 pm