Big Tex has returned to his rightful post, football-filled weekends have resumed and the annual pumpkin spice frenzy is in full force -- fall has officially begun here in D-FW. While it may still feel like summer when you step outside, we're convinced sweater weather is a state of mind. With Halloween just around the corner, why not celebrate the season by scaring up some fun? D-FW is home to some of the highest-rated haunted houses in the country and offers a wide range of spooky attractions for kids and adults. Here's a list of hair-raising haunts you won't want to miss.
Editor's note: "Fast pass" tickets typically let you go to the front of the line. Parking is an additional cost at some locations.
Creekside Manor Haunted House
Surrounded by dark, ominous woods and sinister waters, Creekside Manor offers a traditional haunted-house experience with a very nontraditional purpose. Each year, Creekside Manor sponsors one child in the area who is fighting serious illness. The net proceeds from annual ticket sales are donated to the child's family, helping to alleviate the financial burden of medical treatments. Through Oct. 31 at 2411 Plainview Road, Midlothian. $15. creeksidefright.com.
Cutting Edge Haunted House
Located in an abandoned meatpacking plant, Cutting Edge has consistently been ranked one of the largest haunted houses in the country, as well as one of the most terrifying. The unnervingly realistic setup combines live actors with lifelike mannequins and special effects. Through Nov. 4 at 1701 E. Lancaster Ave., Fort Worth. $29.99-$32.99, $52.99 for a fast pass. Cash only at the door. cuttingedgehauntedhouse.com.
Dan's Haunted House
One of the only Japanese horror-themed attractions in the country, Dan's certainly breaks the typical haunted-house mold. Its overarching themes include evil spirits, demons and other dark elements of Japanese folklore. Through Oct. 29 at 501 E. Swisher Road, Lake Dallas. $20. danshauntedhouse.com.
Dark Hour Haunted House
The eerily authentic performers at the Dark Hour Haunted House take you on a journey into the depths of evil as you explore Coven Manor. The dark forces of the witches' coven come alive through the use of animatronics, Broadway-worthy sets and professional actors. Through Oct. 31 at 701 Taylor Drive, Plano. $23, $50 for a fast pass, $75 for a VIP pass. darkhourhauntedhouse.com.
The Dark Path Haunt
The location of this outdoor attraction is perhaps its most notable feature - tucked away in the forest, the Dark Path is directly across from the infamous Goatman's Bridge. According to Denton legend, the historic bridge has been witness to decades of paranormal activity, including ghost sightings and séances. The Dark Path takes you down a winding trail through four acres of woods, with only a small lantern supplied to each group. Through Oct. 28 at 2695 Old Alton Road, Denton. $20, $30 for a fast pass. Cash only at the door. thedarkpathhaunt.com.
Six Flags Over Texas is home to Fright Fest, the annual Halloween event that transforms the classic amusement park into a spooky maze of haunted attractions. For a tamer experience, families can visit the park during daylight, while the scarier activities begin after dark. The 2017 lineup features zombies, goblins, ghouls, cadavers and clowns. For a truly terrifying evening, check out the haunted houses for an additional admission fee. Through Oct. 31 at 2201 Road to Six Flags, Arlington. $56.99-$76.99. sixflags.com/overtexas.
Hangman's House of Horrors
The 2017 Halloween season marks 29 years of scaring and caring for Hangman's House of Horrors, the haunted attraction whose net proceeds support DFW-area nonprofit organizations. The vacant, century-old building provides the perfect locale for this year's event, themed "Texas Legends." In addition to a full tour of the haunted house, general admission includes access to live music, food trucks and two other terrifying tours -- "No Place Like Home 3D" and "Zombie Outbreak." Through Nov. 4 at 4400 Blue Mound Road, Fort Worth. $20-$29, $30-$39 for a fast pass. hangmans.com.
Hatch and Kraven's Slaughterhouse
Set in a former slaughterhouse, this walk-through haunted attraction is actor-driven, meaning each visit includes new improvisation and interaction. The venue is home to two haunted houses, the Slaughterhouse and the Crypt. Through Oct. 31 at 1400 W. Taylor St., Sherman. $23 for both haunts; $17 for Slaughterhouse; $12 for Crypt. slaughterhousesherman.com.
Moxley Manor Haunted House
Voted one of the scariest haunted houses in Texas, Moxley Manor will provide a pulse-pumping, heart-pounding, terrifying haunted house experience. For one price, you have access to two haunted houses: Moxley Manor Haunted House and the new Big Top Terror Haunted House. Through Oct. 31 at 510 Harwood Road, Bedford. $23, $35 for a VIP pass. moxleymanor.com.
The Parker House Haunted Attraction
This Denton-based haunted house features three attractions: the Parker's Mortuary, the Parker Plantation and Ratliff's Sanitarium. Through Oct. 31 at 8550 W. University Drive, Denton. $25, $40 for a fast pass. dfwfrightnight.com.
Reindeer Manor Halloween Park
As the oldest haunted house in Texas, Reindeer Manor sits timeless, and visitors can feel the spirits of the past coming alive. In addition to the three haunted attractions, patrons who buy a three-house combo ticket will gain access to a bonus attraction, the Shadow House. In this attraction, guests will experience a pitch-black maze with only a glow stick to light the way. Running into a few monsters along the way is par for the horrifying course. Through Oct. 31 at 410 Houston School Road, Red Oak. $15 for one attraction, $25 for two attractions, $35 for all three attractions, $50 for a VIP pass. reindeermanor.com.
The Halloween theme park features five haunted houses, "Scary-Oke," live entertainment and more. If you need a break after venturing through the Hotel of Horror or the Carnevil Clown Maze, you can head over to the food court or one of the three taverns on site for a quick bite and a drink. You can also go through the houses as many times as you like. Through Oct. 28 at 2511 FM66, Waxahachie (at the Scarborough Faire site, off Interstate 35E at Exit 399A). $30 at the gate, $27 online, $15 for a fast pass (must be purchased in addition to general admission ticket). screamspark.com.
Tayman Graveyard Haunted Theme Park
A hellish nightmare takes place across multiple attractions including the Tayman Funeral Home, a graveyard and an abandoned gold mine. Through Oct. 29 at 4721 Cecilia Ave., Midlothian. $25, $20 with donation of two cans of food or pet products, benefiting the North Texas Food Bank and Hood County Animal Shelter. taymangraveyard.com.
Chaos is their name and scaring is their game. Presented by the Chaos Crew, Texas Scaregrounds features professional actors who up the realness factor at this traditional haunted house. Prepare for a night of terror where you'll face a new scare around every corner. Through Oct. 31 at 7829 E. FM917, Alvarado. $20, $18 with a canned food donation for local food banks. texasscaregrounds.com.
Thrillvania Haunted House Park
Featured on the Travel Channel's America's Scariest Halloween Attractions and Fright House on the DIY Network, Thrillvania has been selected as one of the top haunted houses in the nation by several media groups. The park is comprised of three haunted attractions on 50 acres -- Verdun Manor, Cassandra's House of Clowns and Sam Hain's Trail of Torment. Through Nov. 4 at 2330 County Road 138, Terrell. $29.99-$32.99, $44.99-$47.99 for a fast pass. thrillvania.com.
Sarah Kramer contributed to this story.