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The Great Escape: Fall Family Fun at Hicks Nurseries

It's that time of year again when Hicks Nurseries, Long Island's oldest nursery and garden center, will be loading up with everything fall.

Today's escape we are taking a short drive to Westbury to partake in Hicks Nurseries annual Fall Festival.

Although the fall fest officially opened on Sept. 17, it really gets going this coming weekend, Oct. 1 and 2 with lots of things in store from free apple tastings and a gargantuan pumpkin weigh-off to hay rides and workshop demos galore.

Whether you want to take a walk through Otto the Ghost's ghoulish Egyptian garden or visit with the farm animals it's all happening right now - for free - through Oct. 30, mostly during the weekends. 

And the season wouldn't be complete without fresh apple cider, candy apples, fudge, and roasted corn all sold on the premises.

There are over 15 exciting fall events and seminars to check out for the month of October, click here for the diverse list of activities.

But the ones that shouldn't be missed, happening during the third weekend in October, are the 3-D Pumpkin Carving Demos and the Pumpkin Carving Contest. The demo will be performed by talented sand castle creator, Andy Gertler who has gained much recognition from the Travel Channel series called Sand Masters. And for the contest, bring in your cleverly carved pumpkin ready to go. Winners in various categories will receive a $20 Hicks gift certificate. For rules and details check their website.

Everything you could possibly need for your autumn and Halloween decorating can be found under one roof. There are bales of hay, gourds, corn stalks, mums, tons of pumpkins, and more. For apple lovers, bring along a basket and be sure to fill up on fresh-from-the-farm Macoun, McIntosh and Jonagolds.

Remember to bring a non-perishable food item for their fall food drive going to Long Island Cares. As you come to the end of Otto's adventure drop it in the bins provided.

Address: 100 Jericho Turnpike, Westbury

Phone: (516) 334-0066   

Hours: Open seven days a week from 8 am to 6 pm and until 8 pm on Fridays.

Note: Some of the demos and workshops are free and require a reservation while others can run anywhere from $8 and up.

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