Hayrides, pumpkin float lead pack of Halloween-themed events

Hayrides through Cedar Grove Cemetery are a highlight of the fall festival hosted by Cedar Grove Gardens. This year's event is on Sun., Oct. 27.

• Cedar Grove Gardens hosts its annual fall festival on Sun. Oct. 27 from 1 to 3 p.m. The free event features hayrides through the Cedar Grove Cemetery across the street. Kids love to take a whack at one of several piñatas at the garden store, located at 911 Adams St.

• The 12th annual Neponset River Greenway Pumpkin Float will be held on Sat., Oct. 26 at 5:30 p.m. at Pope John Paul II Park in Neponset. Bring your hollow carved jack-o-lanterns and watch them float in Davenport Creek. Halloween costumes are encouraged at this family-friendly event. Pumpkins can be no larger than 8 inches, or they won’t float. At the end of the event, pumpkins are collected for compost and used in Boston’s gardens. No registration is necessary. Check-in at the Hallet Street entrance to park. Cosponsored by MA DCR. For more information call 617-542-7696 or info@bostonnatural.org.

• The popular Zoo Howl at Franklin Park Zoo will be held over two days—October 26 and 27. Children are invited to trick-or-treat among the animals. Other haunted happenings offered throughout the day include creepy crafts, ghoulish games, costume contests and a haunted maze! Visitors can also go on hay rides that will be available on both event days.

• The Mattapan Patriots and Mattahunt Community Center team up to host a family-friendly Halloween party on Oct. 31 from 6 to 8 p.m. A costume contest, face painting and dance contest are part of the event, which includes a haunted house at the center, located at 100 Hebron St.

• The city of Boston’s Fall Pumpkin Festival comes to the Boston Common Frog Pond on Sun., Oct. 27, from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Hundreds of illuminated jack-o’-lanterns will be floated on the water and ParkSCIENCE activities will be offered.

Attendees are asked to bring 8-inch or smaller carved pumpkins that will be lit and then floated on the Frog Pond for a thrilling early evening display. In addition, local organizations have been invited to carve jack-o’-lanterns to put on display at the event and participants will have the opportunity to vote on their favorite pumpkin. Children are also invited to decorate luminaries which will line the edge of the Frog Pond.