This year’s Halloween season is bound to be a very unusual one around Southern California, with the cancellation of most traditional local spooky-time events due to the ongoing pandemic. But though its fan-favorite Knott’s Scary Farm will not take place in 2020 (for the first time in decades), the Buena Park-based theme park Knott’s Berry Farm has stepped up with a more-than-suitable alternative: Knott’s Taste of Fall-O-Ween, which manages to deliver a shocking amount of the tricks and treats one would expect from Halloween while still following the expected safety protocols necessary during these strange days.

My fellow Laughing Place reporter Jeremiah Good and I spent the day at Knott’s Taste of Fall-O-Ween this past Sunday, enjoying the sights, sounds– and tastes, of course– of this limited-time outdoor shopping and dining experience. We hope you enjoy the images (and one live-streamed video tour) we brought back and put into the photo galleries below.

Checking into Knott’s Berry Farm for Taste of Fall-O-Ween is a similar procedure to how we entered the similar Knott’s Taste of Calico and Taste of Knott’s events over the summer– a temperature screening, security checkpoint, and ticket scanning at the entrance. Once inside, you’ll receive a tasting card (included with the $35 adult admission) that gets you five items of your choice from a wide array of options.

The following gallery represents just some of the many food, beverage, and dessert options available around Knott’s Taste of Fall-O-Ween, with terrific photos by Jeremiah.

After making my way into the park and getting the lay of the land as far as this event goes, I broadcast a live-stream tour of the experience via the Laughing Place YouTube channel. You can watch that full video immediately below.

Watch Live from Knott's Berry Farm's Taste of Fall-O-Ween:

In general, my favorite part of Knott’s Fall-O-Ween is the fantastic park atmosphere, decor, and character interactions around the famous Ghost Town area. For this event they’ve got the usual jack-o-lanterns, pumpkins, and skeletons, plus ghostly versions of the citizens of Calico welcoming you to town. The Calico Mine Stage (where guests can enjoy pre-taped performances by Billy Hill and the Hillbillies) is also decked out for the occasion, and one major highlight is a nifty animatronic organist perched on the Gold Trails Hotel balcony.

Map kiosks around the park help attendees find their way toward the food stands, merchandise locations, and other features of Ghost Town, Boardwalk, and Fiesta Village.

Speaking of Boardwalk and Fiesta Village, those areas look frighteningly lovely as well, with the latter sporting a Dia de Muertos theme and DJ playing hit tunes for the central seating area.

The most delightfully scary surprise to me at Knott’s Taste of Fall-O-Ween was the Camp Snoopy Trick-Or-Treat Trail. A trick-or-treat bag is included with the $20 kids’ admission price, but adults can pay $8 for a bag or simply walk through the area to enjoy the shockingly immersive decorations.

I was so incredibly impressed by the level of design and planning that went into transforming the Camp Snoopy area into the Trick-Or-Treat Trail. Familiar elements of many Knott’s Scary Farm haunted mazes were utilized in assembling this walk-through attraction– and Charlie Brown and the gang get in on the action as well, naturally. But the absolute best part is that instead of live Knott’s Berry Farm employees operating the rides (since the rides can’t be n operation this year), they’ve propped up a series of skeletons as Camp Snoopy crew members… and more bony brethren as the guests on the attractions themselves!

I wasn’t able to stay at the event past nightfall, but Jeremiah did and captured a few moments of the eerie lighting and even more appropriate mood set by the park after dark. Overall I’d say Knott’s Taste of Fall-O-Ween is well worth the price of admission to get as much into the Halloween spirit as possible during these troubled times.

But one wouldn’t want to leave a Knott’s Berry Farm event without picking up some affordable merchandise to remember the visit: this attractive t-shirt and pin combo costs only $16.99. What a deal!

Knott’s Taste of Fall-O-Ween runs on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays between now and November 1, though many dates are already sold out. For additional information and to purchase advance tickets, be sure to visit the official Knott’s Berry Farm website.