Autumn is many New Yorkers’ favorite season for an abundance of reasons. The foliage, haunted houses, orchards and other local opportunities call for the best experiences around. For starters, the Hudson Valley has the best view of the mountains across the river, full of beautiful and magnificent golden hues, lit up by the sunlight. Taking a scenic drive is a fun thing to do when it’s late October, or early November. We are also home to many family friendly apple orchards and pumpkin patches, leaving opportunities to pick the freshest fall produce. Weed Orchard & Winery, located in Marlboro, offers pumpkin and apple picking, a bakery and an array of fall wine — but the best part is free entry and parking! There’s also Hurds Family Farms, located in Modena, which allows for some classic apple picking and a wild corn maze! Another one, located in Newburgh, is Lawrence Farms, which has an entry fee of $7 Monday — Thursday and $10 Friday — Sunday. The farm has apple picking and fall-themed baked goods, such as pies and apple cider slushies. These are the perfect places to do some cute fall photoshoots with your family, friends or significant other. While you’re there, you can pick up some fresh produce to bring home and try out a delicious autumnal recipe.
There are so many fun experiences to take part in around the area, including The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze: Hudson Valley, located in Van Cortlandt Manor. This is a beautiful museum on an 18th century landscape, lit up by approximately 7,000 hand carved jack o’lanterns with different faces featured on each one. The pumpkins also feature synchronized music and lights. Tickets can be purchased online for a scheduled night and time to experience the lit path of bright faced jack o’lanterns for approximately 45 minutes. You can attend Sept. 16 to Nov. 20. If you haven’t already been, I highly recommend seeing the beautiful array of carvings and fall decor. As of Nov. 10 there are still about two weeks left to go and see this wonderful sight.
Some other fun things you can do this fall include: baking, friendsgiving events, parades, corn mazes, wine or beer festivals, outdoor concerts and watching spooky movies at home. This is a great time to get together with your friends and loved ones and pick a fun activity, as it is still warm enough to go outside, but chilly enough to wear fun sweaters and cool pants. You could be like Rory Gilmore, of the classic small-town scened show “Gilmore Girls,” pick a sturdy tree on campus to sit under, and pull out a great book to read. I am currently flipping between “Survive the Night” by Riley Sager and “Joyland” by Stephen King. Though my current ‘spot’ on campus would probably be Wooster Hall. However, one of my personal favorite fall pastimes is popping into a Barnes & Noble and going on a literary shopping spree — seriously, who doesn’t love that store?
Fall also calls for new and delicious menus at most coffee shops and bakeries. For starters, there is everyone’s favorite pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks. Dunkin’ has an iced pumpkin chai latte that is to die for! Meanwhile, Starbucks also carries an apple crisp macchiato drink for apple lovers. More seasonal drinks are coming out now too, peppermint mocha, sugar cookie, cookie butter and gingerbread flavored beverages will be available depending on each location in anticipation for the fast-approaching holiday season. That means one thing — we’ve got to enjoy the fall while it lasts! Grabbing your favorite seasonal beverage, a spooky book to read, taking a beautiful scenic drive to admire the fall foliage and then heading on over to one of the many exciting adventures around the area sounds like the perfect way to enjoy your lovely brisk day, doesn’t it? The only thing that could add onto this perfect day, like the sprinkles on a sundae, would be topping it off with fun pictures to document your memories. Have an exciting rest of your autumn!