October is a beautiful time to visit Baker County, Oregon with autumn colors making Baker County’s three Oregon Scenic byways even more spectacular, and the crisp mornings and warm lazy afternoons are perfect for exploring the Elkhorn and Wallowa mountains.
October is also a busy month with lots of great celebrations and local festivals celebrating the end of harvest, the arrival of fall, and all things spooky as Halloween approaches.
Here are a few of our favorite October events in Baker County .
Huntington’s Haunted Forest.
Every Friday and Saturday in October 6 till 10:30 p.m., the Huntington Haunted Forest is a frightfully fun October outing for anyone seeking a little pre Halloween scare. The Haunted Forest is located just outside of the town of Huntington and shuttles pick up and drop off attendees at the Huntington Lions Park in Downtown Huntington. For more information visit the Huntington Haunted Forest
Artists Open Studio Tour
This weekend long celebration of the arts starts on Friday October 6 with the First Friday Art Walk in historic downtown Baker City and then continues through the weekend of October 7th and 8th with 22 local artists participating in the Open Studio Tour at 14 different locations throughout Baker City and Haines, providing visitors a chance to visit with local artists in their creative space and see how they create. The tour is free and maps and a list of participating galleries and artists are available that weekend at Crossroads Carnegie Art Center and Short Term Gallery in downtown Baker City
Cast Iron Chef Dutch Oven Cook Off
The Oregon Trail Interpretive Center on Flagstaff Hill overlooking Baker City, is the perfect setting for this tasty culinary competition Saturday October 7th . Dutch oven teams set up in the outdoor wagon encampment and compete for the title of Cast Iron Chef. Just like the television series chefs have a variety of optional ingredients, one mystery ingredient, and a select number of required locally sourced ingredients including heirloom herbs and vegetables grown at the Oregon trail Interpretive Center’s own heirloom garden. It’s fun to watch the teams compete as they create their Dutch Oven masterpieces throughout the morning, but the real fun is taste testing all of the entries and helping choose the winner for people’s choice. For more information including rules and complete schedule visit the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center
Taste of Downtown Baker City
Here is your chance to shop, dine, unwind and taste downtown Baker City. Saturday October 7th from 4 till 7 p.m. taste your way through the streets of beautiful historic downtown Baker City sampling the best of Baker City as you go, during the 21st annual Taste of Downtown Baker City. Track your favorite tastes on your official “tasting spoon” and once you’ve enjoyed one taste from at least six different blocks, enter to win one of three $100 Baker Bucks Gift Certificates. For more information including a list of participating restaurants and businesses and sample menus, visit Baker City Downtown.
Ghost Hunting at the Geiser Grand Hotel.
The Geiser Grand Hotel celebrates October in grand style all month long with a number of great events including a witches weekend, and a masquerade ball, but our favorite October event is the Ghost Hunting Weekend with the Big River Paranormal investigators starting at 9 p.m. October 14 and continuing through the night into the wee hours of the 15th.
For more information including tickets, reservations, and other October events at the hotel visit the Geiser Grand
Riding the Sumpter Valley Railroad
This historic narrow gauge railroad is always one of our favorite ways to explore the Elkhorn Scenic Byway and the town of Sumpter but especially in October. The Sumpter Valley Railroad offers three unique train rides in October. October 13th is the fall colors train, offering visitors a chance to enjoy the spectacular fall foliage and beautiful views of the snow capped Elkhorn Mountains during the train ride between McEwen and Sumpter. On October 14th and 15th it’s all about photographers. The Fall Photographers Weekend includes two all day photo excursions with the historic train and the surrounding fall landscape as your set for the day.
The latest addition to the Sumpter Valley Railroad’s fall schedule, the Haunted Halloween Train on Saturday and Sunday October 28th and 29th is sure to be hit with those looking for one more family outing before Halloween.
Val’s Veggies Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze
It wouldn’t be October without a trip to the pumpkin patch to pick out the perfect pumpkin for carving your Jack O Lantern. Val’s Veggies Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze in Keating is the perfect place to find your pumpkin and celebrate the harvest season and all things Halloween. Friday Saturday and Sunday evenings through October and Halloween night with special events and activities including the midnight maze schedule throughout the month. For more information including complete schedule, and driving directions visit Val’s Veggies.
Downtown Baker City Trick Or Treat
October 31st from 4-6 p.m. the streets of downtown Baker City fill with thousands of ghouls and goblins, princesses and pirates, and super heroes everywhere for this annual community Halloween celebration, when hundreds of costumed trick or treaters turn downtown into a two hour costume parade and trick or treating frenzy. For more information visit Historic baker City
These are just a few of our favorite things about October in Baker County, Oregon.
For more information including a complete list of harvest festivals, fall events, and more things to see and do in Baker County this October visit Baker County Tourism’s website www.basecampbaker.com.