On Monday morning, hubby and I awoke to a strange yet familiar hissing sound. Could it be? Already? Yup. It was our radiators, slowly simmering back to life after a long, hot summer of inactivity. It’s official: fall has arrived in Connecticut. But these chilly nights are preceded by some pretty glorious days, so now is the time to get out and explore those outdoor destinations that you shied away from during the sticky days of summer. Get ’em outside while you still can, that’s my motto!
To that end, we explored a bushel of outdoor destinations this past month (and okay, one pretty nifty new indoor activity too–always good to have a preview for the colder months). From playgrounds to PYO, we’ve got ideas for ways to enjoy these last pretty days of the year before all we want to do is sit inside next to those radiators 🙂
1. PYO and Playhouses. Yup. You read that right. March Farm in Bethlehem, CT might just be the most kid-friendly farm you’ll ever visit. Sure there’s plenty of pick-your-own fun, but the kids’ play area, complete with any array or artful playhouses and a sand area filled with toy trucks and monster tires, is the real show-stopper. Plus I’ve got three words for you: 450-foot tricycle track. Nuff said.
2. Time Travel. Do you like FREE? So do we! So of course Mandy had to check out the surprisingly nearby Old Sturbridge Village in Sturbridge, MA during the month of September when it was FREE for Connecticut Science Center members. (Are you a member? Hurry up! You’ve still got a few more days!) As a kid growing up in New England, I think I took a field trip to this recreated 19th century farm village every time we studied U.S. history, so I was really excited to read Mandy’s post about her visit. (Looks like the place hasn’t changed too much in the last two decades…or actually, in the last two centuries. Ha!). Costumed historians to encounter, old buildings to explore, horse-drawn carts to ride, and animals to visit with–turns out history can be a ton of fun even for the preschool set! (p.s. Don’t forget to check out their buffet-style Sunday Brunch at the Oliver Wight Tavern where kids ages 10 and under eat FREE–see, we told you we like free 🙂 )
3. High-Flying Fun. Yes, this is an indoor activity, but don’t miss Mandy’s preview of the BRAND NEW Flight Trampoline Park in New Britain, CT and their Kid Flight program designed for the 6 and under crowd with special rates plus access to ALL the equipment for the littlest jumpers. You’ll want to be familiar with this place before the colder months roll in because we promise this will be one of your go-to dreary-day destinations. And a note for all you multi-tasking moms out there (which is pretty much all of us!): this outing might be able to double as your workout for the day too!
4. A New Pick for Picking. Of course Mandy and I love our old standbys for that quintessential fall activity: apple picking. But we also love to try out new places (and hey, if we end up with too many apples to eat, we just use them for this awesome, kid-approved recipe). This year I ventured to Guilford, CT to check out the famous Bishop’s Orchards with their out-of-this-world Farm Store, charming pumpkin patch, hay and corn mazes, plus special activities and all-around family fun.
5. Can’t Beat This Treat. How many times have you shelled out big bucks at the FroYo store after you realize that your kiddo has piled his/her weight in toppings onto that itty bitty (or so you thought) cup of yogurt? Well now you can let ’em go to town with TCBY’s after school special. Want to sweeten the deal? Head over to a nearby playground (for this outing Mandy explored the new-to-her Boundless Playground in Bloomfield, but we’ve got other suggestions too) and let the kiddos burn off all that sugar while you enjoy a beautiful fall afternoon.
So that’s it for September. Stay tuned for even more fall fun in October, including our annual no-carve pumpkin roundup PLUS our guide to not-too-spooky Halloween fun for the little ones. Got a fall outing for our roster or a Halloween event for our guide? Leave a comment on this post or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We get our best ideas from readers like you!
Meet Our Sponsors!
- The Independent Day School – Located on a rural campus in Middlefield, CT is a private pre-school, elementary and middle school, serving families from over 20 communities.
- Jessica’s Garden – This Marlborough destination is a gardening center and family-friendly eatery rolled into one. A great place to take the kids, relax and enjoy the beautiful grounds, and check out their ice cream and lobster shack.
- Kathryn Deane Photography – Kathryn is a natural light photographer specializing in maternity, newborn, child, family, and senior portrait photography.
- Moms in Training (MIT) – The newest branch of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. MIT is a Fairfield-based, flexible 8-week fitness program for moms who want to get fit, meet other local moms and help cure cancer!
- Stella and Dot Stylist, Tisa Rabun-Marshall can help you get your wardrobe set for fall or begin your Holiday gift shopping with the latest in boutique-style jewelry and accessories.
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