The kids are back in school. The college and NFL teams are back in action. It's time to call it: We declare this the official start of Halloween season. Here are the top five attractions to fit into your next 40 days.

Balloons Etc. - Shopping for the best Halloween costumes is easy when you make a trip downtown to Balloons Etc. From silly to sexy, complete costume rentals or simply the accessories you need to create your own masterpiece. Sparkles the Clown boasts that his store has over 4,000 costumes. They also rent bounce houses, cotton candy, snow cone and popcorn machines too.

Bart's Farm & Pumpkin Patch - It's just not autumn until you indulge in cider and donuts while choosing the perfect pumpkin for the porch. Check out these reviews:

Haunted Halloween Ball - GO Cedar Rapids will host the 3rd Annual event at the DoubleTree  with the Pork Tornadoes, Tony Bohnenkamp and Alisabeth Von Presley.

Live music, amazing lights and sound, scary decorations, $2,000 in costume contest prize money, photo booths and much more.  The event has sold out both years and they have raised more than $15,000 for local charities.

Bloomsbury Farm Corn Maze - Follow the signs to one of the most popular corn mazes in Eastern Iowa. First homesteaded in 1856 by Dave Petersen, the current owner's great-grandfather. Along with the 3,000 acres of corn and sobeans, the family farm is a nearby favorite for lots of reasons. Find out for yourself: Dave and Karen tell me that Opening day is this Saturday September 16.

Panic Park - The best haunted house experience in Cedar Falls and possibly all of Eastern Iowa. From creepy clowns to zombies and every fright in between, plan to visit with an extra pair of underwear, just in case. Opening weekend is September 29th. 5932 North Union Road in Cedar Falls. For a sneak peek click here, if you dare...

Use these five suggestions to jump start your Halloween season and it will be the best ever, we promise!

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