Editor’s note: This post originally ran in the past, but we’ve updated all the events for Fall 2016!
There’s something about the coming winter that makes you want to savor autumn. To me, fall is about spending every last second outdoors. Drum roll, please … here are 50 ways to spend your fall.
2. Forget driving upstate. There’s spectacular fall foliage right in our backyards. Here’s another way to enjoy the leaves: A drive up Route 22 from Valhalla to Chappaqua.
3. Go camping with the kids in the beautiful Catskills, just two hours away. Fall is actually the best time to camp out — comfortable temps, no bugs, colorful scenery. And nearby Kaaterskill Falls is a great fall hike for older kids, leading to the largest waterfall in New York state.
4. Head to Ridge Hill’s Legoland for Ninjago Weekend on Sept. 24 and 25, or Brick-or-Treat every weekend in October.
5. Plan a getaway over Columbus Day weekend; here are our three best ideas.
7. Get the lemon blossom foot treatment at Oasis Spa in Dobbs Ferry. After sandal season, your feet deserve a little pampering.
8. Spend an afternoon at a local fair, festival or carnival. Coming up: the Fieldhome Fall Festival in Cortlandt Manor (Sept. 24), Fall Carnival in Fleetwood (Sept. 28-Oct. 2), Columbus Day Carnival in Eastchester (Oct. 7) and Horse Show and County Fair in Peekskill (Oct. 8-9).
9. Watch Sesame Street Live at the Westchester County Center, Sept. 24 and 25.
11. Put all those colorful leaves you’re collecting to good use by turning them into holiday table centerpieces.
12. Go back to school. Sign yourself up for painting or digital photography at the Pelham Arts Center, a writer’s class at the Hudson Valley Writer’s Center, a clay workshop at the Clay Arts Center, or whatever other creative pursuit you’ve been dying to try out.
13. Indulge in some silver dollar pumpkin pancakes.
14. Attend the Maker Faire when it sets up at the New York Hall of Science the weekend of Oct. 1 and 2. It’s an awesome family-friendly showcase of invention and creativity.
16. Visit a Hudson Valley pumpkin patch in October. Take hundreds of picture, then go home with armfuls of pumpkins.
17. Scare the kids into fits of fun at the New York Botanical Garden’s Haunted Pumpkin Garden, running daily through October 30.
18. Grab breakfast at The Beehive in Armonk. Biggest portions ever.
19. Roll down a grassy hill at Storm King Art Center, in nearby New Windsor. It’s absolutely gorgeous in the fall.
20. Bring your little ones to Caramoor Center in Katonah on Friday, Oct. 28, to listen to some spooky but not-too-scary folktales from around the world. The event features audience participation, puppets and hot apple cider! Kids are encouraged to come in costume.
21. Be amazed by the Blaze! More than 7,000 carved-out pumpkins lit up in the yard of a historic home — nothing says Halloween more.
24. Shop Chelsea Dry Goods in Hastings. You’ll love the selection of vintage-inspired toys, eco-chic home goods and fun odds and ends. Then, take the kids to the Hastings Library children’s room. While the kids read, stare out the windows at the river and exhale.
25. Roast marshmallows over the grill or fire pit with these nifty telescoping, rotating “sticks.” Then help your kids make s’mores and tell spooky stories (well, the G-rated version!).
26. Build your own scarecrow at Scarsdale’s Greenburgh Nature Center on Oct. 16.
27. Roll up your sleeves, tie on an apron, and take our seven days, seven meals cooking challenge.
28. Bring your older ones for a spooky graveyard tour at the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery. With a lantern in hand, keep an eye out for the headless horseman.
29. Buy a few metallic Sharpies, collect some leaves at the park, and let your little ones doodle their favorite designs on. What a great idea, the Artful Parent!
30. Pick up autumn’s bounty at a farmers’ market nearest you. Our calendar is filled with options up and down the county.
31. Throw a DIY Halloween party with these really nifty ideas.
32. After Halloween is over, use up your leftover candy in this creative way.
33. Organize a fall scavenger hunt in your backyard or at a local park. I love what U Create Crafts did, but really you could just draw a few things on a brown bag and send your kids out to find stuff.
34. Pick up an apple pie from Baked by Susan in Croton. Heaven on a fork.
35. Throw a sleep under for your kid and her closest friends — treat them to all the nighttime fun (PJs, popcorn, movie), but send the guests home before bedtime.
36. Indulge in a grown-up grilled cheese sandwich. Maybe give your kids a couple of bites if they’re behaving.
37. Consider a trip to the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk just for one of their amazing IMAX films. Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Secret Ocean opened this month.
38. Show your little ones how to use a compass. When they get lazy on the trail, bust yours out — suddenly, he or she is the inspired navigator.
39. Start planning your February break. The winter holidays will be over before you know it, and you’ll be itching to get out of the winter doldrums and over to a warmer locale.
40. Buy a Vitamix Blender. It has a heating feature that helps homemade soup cook in a snap.
41. Take a bike ride with the kids, training wheels and all. Bike Sundays are running on the Bronx River Parkway through the end of September, and we’ve got easy bike routes for Thornwood and the North County Trailway.
42. Make your appointment to get your flu shot. Then make one for your kids.
43. Leaf peep from above on Walkway Over the Hudson, then spend the rest of the day at the Mid-Hudson Children’s Museum. Their Imagination Playground is described as a “pop-up adventure playground” where kids can stack, move and maneuver a large set of giant blue blocks.
44. Donate $25 to the Food Bank of Westchester — it will put a Thanksgiving turkey on somebody else’s table.
45. Speaking of turkeys, pick up a fresh one at a Hudson Vally farm in November.
46. Shuck corn, grind grain and participate in other fall farm chores at Stone Barns in Pocantico Hills, now through mid-November.
47. Start practicing your Thanksgiving sides. We’ve got three no-fail, make-ahead recipes!
48. Attend a hands-on kids’ workshop at Home Depot every first Saturday of the month. They use real tools and materials, and the workshop is completely free. This month: Build your own wooden fire truck with real wheels.
49. Try the lattes at hipster hangout Antoinette’s Patisserie in Hastings. The cafe is relaxed and the coffees are perfectly frothed.
50. Book a kid-friendly trail ride with Westchester Trail Rides in Croton and breathe in the crisp fall air from the top of your own horse. Enjoy the great outdoors before the cold sets in for good.
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