As fall temperatures slowly return, so does one of Central Florida's biggest events. The streets of downtown Mount Dora transform into a sprawling craft fair on October 22 and 23 with hundreds of crafters from across the country. The Mount Dora Craft Fair is a nationally ranked craft fair and features an eclectic mix of handmade items ranging from jewelry, photography and textiles to paintings, leather goods and woodwork. The two-day event has previously attracted approximately 100,000 visitors, according to its organizers.
RELATED: Best local Fall events & festivals Crafts aren’t all there will be in downtown Mount Dora that weekend. Its many unique stores and seemingly endless restaurants are also open during the craft fair’s hours to accommodate shoppers and diners.
The festival runs Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Parking restrictions begin downtown in the late afternoon on Friday to allow for the craft vendors to set up. Street parking is limited, so as visitors drive into Mount Dora, they are encouraged to look for signs for park-and-ride shuttles located near the different entry points into the city. Pets are not allowed inside the festival for their own safety and that of other visitors. For more news and events in Mount Dora, Tavares & Eustis, visit the area's websiteand download the area's free mobile app. Be sure to follow Mount Dora Buzz on Instagram and Twitterfor more local info.
ABOVE: Corn maze at Long & Scott Farm. (Photo supplied by Long & Scott Farm Corn Maze Adventures)
Feeling brave and adventurous? Go get lost in the annual corn maze just south of Mount Dora. The 20th annual Corn Maze Adventure at Long & Scott Farm returns on October 1 and continues through December 11. Located approximately seven miles southwest of Mount Dora, the seasonal attraction reportedly brings an estimated 1500-2000 weekend visitors.
Guests that dare can enter the 6.5 acre corn maze and attempt to find their way out of the tall and twisting corn field that's designed in a pirate theme this year. If that’s not enough of a challenge, visitors can opt to tackle the maze at night. Whether day or night, there’s no need to panic. It's friendly fun, so before an anxiety attack kicks in, participants can raise a flag to surrender and be promptly rescued. There is also a half-acre mini-maze for smaller guests. The two mazes have lots of paths and plenty of room. Employees inside the maze and on a bridge monitor and help guests navigate the rows of corn. Visitors are asked to divide into groups of four to six people, with an adult in each group, and then enter the maze with a flag and a game sheet.
This year there will be themed night mazes from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.on select Saturday nights that include Noche Latina on October 15, Country Night on October 22, Family Friendly Halloween on October 29, and Saute to Our Veterans on November 12, which also provides free admittance to veterans all weekend.
The popular weekend attraction also includes a lot of fun outdoor activities for kids, including an oversized jumping pillow, 60' super slide, kids' zip line, a mist maze, plus catch-and-release fishing. Visitors can also take an audio tour of the farm on the hayride while learning about the farm and our history. Food vendors are onsite, as well as a country market and cafe. Scott's Maze Adventure is open on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sundays from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. between October 1 and December 11. Visitors should get there early to avoid long lines. Latest entry is 3 p.m. The farm is located at 26216 County Road 448A, Mount Dora. Tickets are $15 online or $17 at the gate.