It is becoming a tradition for us here at Out and About Mom to gather up our favorite posts of the season and share them with you in one handy-dandy list. Today we are doing just that as we start to celebrate fall here in Connecticut. I know, I know the weather is not cooperating right now and the temperatures this week have been in the 90’s (not really pumpkin spice latte weather!) but I promise you fall is just around the corner.
This time of year is special for many reasons. During the fall season, the weather in Connecticut is just lovely and the colors on display from the changing leaves are something that cannot be missed. Parents begin signing their little one up for programs and classes and families spend free weekdays or weekends visiting festivals and fairs throughout the state. Kids get to pick apples and pumpkins and some of the best pictures of the year can be captured at your local farm. At Out and About Mom we love the fall season and we really love getting a chance to share with you some of our favorite things to do right now!
So it is time to get planning! Take a look at our Fall Bucket List with 50 activity suggestions and identify the ones you want to explore.
For even more information, each listing contains a link back to our original post about that venue. But please note that we have been writing for over four years so the information contained in some of our posts could now be out-of-date. But not to worry, our posts will still give you all of the great insider tips you want to know and then you can just go to the venue’s website or social media page and get the latest information on hours and pricing.
- Enjoy a beautiful nature hike at the Roaring Brook Nature Center in Canton. Nature trails are FREE.
- Let your child’s creative side shine at Imagine Studio in West Hartford.
- Check out the play area or a library program at the remodeled Avon Library. FREE
- Get some exercise while taking in the beautiful view of changing leaves at the West Hartford Reservoir. FREE.
- Take the wagon ride to pumpkin and apple picking at Karabin Farms in Southington. (Wagon rides Friday – Monday) FREE to visit.
- Enjoy the scenic views and pick a pumpkin on the Pumpkin Patch Train Ride on the Naugatuck Railroad. (October 10-12, 17&18, and 24&25)
- Relax and sample some yummy wine at Lost Acres Vineyard in North Granby. (open Friday – Sunday) FREE to visit.
- Drop-in for open play at Playstrong in Simsbury. (Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday from 10:00 am – 12:00 pm starting October 6th)
- Check out the playground, visit the animals, and pick some apples at March Farm in Bethlehem. (Open daily. Rides to the apple orchards are available on weekends only) FREE to visit.
- Burn off some energy at the drop-in open gym or sign up for a class at Romp n’ Roll in Wethersfield.
- Take a shoreline trip for apple picking, hay rides, and a corn maze at Scott’s Yankee Farmer in East Lyme. (Closed Tuesday and Wednesday. Hayrides weekends only.) FREE to visit.
- Pick berries and apples at the destination that lives up to its name, Easy Pickin’s Orchard in Enfield. (Closed Tuesdays.) FREE to visit.
- Pick peaches and apples and then enjoy a picnic lunch while the kids play at Dondero Orchards in South Glastonbury. (Open daily) FREE to visit.
- Let your kids climb the tallest playscape tower I’ve ever seen at Pease Place Community Playground in Woodbridge. FREE.
- Make your way through the corn maze, eat some cider donuts, and pick some apples at Lyman Orchards in Middlefield. (The maze is open through November 1st)
- Take a hayride and then let the little ones explore the mini-corn maze and play area at Brown’s Harvest in Windsor. (Weekends beginning September 19th – November 1st, though some activities available during the week)
- Feed the goats, take a hayride, and bounce in the giant pumpkin bounce house at Riverview Farm’s Fall Festival at Robb’s Farm in Glastonbury. (Open weekends September 12th – November 4th.)
- Indulge in the carnival rides and apple fritters at the Southington Apple Harvest Festival. (October 2-4 & October 9-11) FREE to visit.
- Load up the munchkins for a spooky stroll down Wetherfield’s Main Street for the 20th annual Scarecrows on Main Street. (September 26 – October 25) FREE. Then head around the corner for some playground time at Mikey’s Place Playground.
- Feel completely comfortable bringing your little one to the newly refurbished Wadsworth Art Museum in Hartford on the second Saturday of each month. FREE.
- Find time for stories, arts & crafts, and maybe even a little shopping at Jack and Allie’s Bookstore’s storytime. (Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11:15) FREE.
- Visit with friends, sing & dance, do science projects, and bake your favorite treat by signing up for a class or enjoying a drop-in program at The Little Green Tambourine Creative Arts Studio in Canton.
- See your favorite marine life while keeping warm indoors at the Maritime Aquarium in Norwalk. (Connecticut Science Center members get in FREE during September and Maritime Aquarium Members get in FREE to the Connecticut Science Center in November).
- Take a Sunday drive to visit Old Sturbridge Village in Sturbridge, Massachusetts and enjoy a break at their brunch buffet at the Oliver Wight Tavern. (Sunday brunch is FREE for kids ages 3 and under; $7.95 for kids 12 and under)
- Enjoy weekday fall fun at Foster Family Farm in South Windsor complete with a hayride, playscapes, animals, and my son’s favorite — the pedal carts. (Open weekends in September starting September 19th and open daily in October)
- Take a hayride and pick the perfect pumpkin at the Pickin’ Patch in Avon. (Hayrides run weekends in October and Columbus Day)
- Take a wagon ride to pick delicious apples, then sample some favorite fall treats at the Hungry Harvester snack bar at Belltown Hill Orchards in Glastonbury. (The Hungry Harvester is open every weekend (and Columbus Day and Labor Day) from Labor Day through the end of October) FREE to visit.
- Enjoy giant turkey legs, loaded baked potatoes, bizarre deep fried creations, rides, animals, and butter carvings at The Big E in Springfield, Massachusetts or visit one of the other fairs and festivals happening in and around our state. (September 18th- October 4th)
- Explore carnival rides, a petting zoo, a craft fair, indulgent snack stands, live music and more at the 40th annual Glastonbury Apple Harvest Festival. (October 16th-18th)
- Get the wee ones gussied up and head for the Halloween Stroll in Blue Back Square/West Hartford Center for a store-to-store trick-or-treating event that includes live music and other kids’ activities. (October 24th) FREE.
- Meet the pumpkinheads and explore their town, frolic in the hay maze, and bounce along on “The Ride” at the totally non-scary, family-friendly Halloween celebration at Pumpkintown USA in East Hampton. (September 19th through Halloween)
- Find food, music, tractor-pulled hayrides, pumpkins, pick-your-own apples, a corn maze, and more at Rose’s Berry Farm Fall Festival in Glastonbury. (Weekends from late September to late October. Check here for 2015 schedule updates when they become available.)
- Experience the unique horse-drawn wagon ride, pick some apples, and let your little one get “lost” in the FREE hay maze at Scott’s Orchard Fall Festival in Glastonbury. (Apple and Harvest Festivals run September 26th & 27th and October 10th, 11th, 12th; Wagon ride weekends only and hay maze open daily from mid-September to October 12th.) FREE to visit.
- Make your fall grocery shopping trips to the entertaining Stew Leonard’s in Newington and have even more fun with their Fall Hay Maze. (Daily in October) FREE.
- Spend an enchanted day at the Wee Faerie Village at the Florence Griswold Museum in Old Lyme. This year’s theme is “Whimsical Kingdoms.” (Runs October 1st to November 1st)
- Take a day trip to New Haven for dinosaurs, picnics, and sweet treats, and enjoy the fall foliage along the way. You can even check out the totally FREE, family-friendly Stories and Art program at the Yale University Art Gallery every second Sunday of the month!
- Enjoy exploring the galleries with your baby/toddler at the Museum & Me: Playdates with Art class at the New Britain Museum of American Art.
- Pull turnips, jump in the hay stack, and feed the cows on the Hurst Farm Hay Ride in Andover. (Weekends in October)
- Enjoy seasonal homemade ice cream flavors (like cinnamon caramel swirl and pumpkin–yummmm) and beautiful fall views at the UConn Dairy Bar and Animal Barns in Storrs.
- Drop in for Saturday morning storytimes at the South Windsor Public Library, then head over to the South Windsor Farmers’ Market (runs through October 17th for seasonal offerings and FREE kids’ activities.) FREE to visit.
- Enjoy a trolley ride out to the pumpkin patch, pick a pumpkin, and then decorate it with festive accessories at the Connecticut Trolley Museum in East Windsor. (Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays, and Columbus Day in October)
- Visit the Zedonk (and other friendly animals) at Ray of Light Farm in East Haddam. FREE to visit.
- Snap a selfie with Bigfoot in the super family-friendly corn maze at Garden’s Dream Farm in Enfield. (Opens September 1st)
- Warm up with a yummy breakfast at The Sloppy Waffle in Newington.
- Jump in the corn pit, race the pedal bikes, and climb the giant tires at the Fair Weather Acres Fall Festival in Cromwell (Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays from September 18th – October 31st)
- Take your littlest sports fans out for family-friendly food with a side of football at Buffalo Wild Wings in Manchester.
- Conquer the corn maze, wander through the hay maze, and pick your own apples (or just pick up some apple pies) at Bishop’s Orchards in Guilford. (Corn Maze open weekends through October at 526 New England Road; Hay Maze open daily in October at Farm Market location at 1355 Boston Post Road.)
- Enjoy a fall day at Mill Woods Park in Wethersfield where you can picnic in the park, visit the Eleanor Buck Wolf Nature Center, and play at the Mill Woods Park Playground. FREE to visit.
- Take your budding carpenter to a totally FREE Home Depot Kids Workshop where they can create real woodworking projects like a piggy bank or a birdhouse. (Every first Saturday of the month at stores nationwide.) FREE.
- Marvel at the magnificently carved creatures, take a spin on a real indoor carousel, and participate in a family-friendly craft at Family Sundays at the New England Carousel Museum in Bristol (select Sundays through December; see here for details.)
And if your adventure schedule is still not complete, check out our Places We’ve Been Page for a full list of the blog posts we’ve written over the last few years.
Please note that some of the suggested outings included in this list are businesses that have been or are currently sponsors of our site. Any opinions expressed here, however, are 100% our own.
Now it is time to start planning your fall adventures. Where will you go? We’d love to know. Leave us a comment below and share your favorite destinations.
Shawna & Mandy
- Connecticut Children’s Medical Center – The state’s only free-standing hospital that offers comprehensive, world-class health care to children. Based in Hartford, Connecticut Children’s also provides services at several locations throughout the state.
- The Little Green Tambourine – Located in Canton, CT, this healthy living creative arts studio offers a variety of opportunities for kids to learn and play.
- Mandell JCC – The Mandell JCC, Zachs Campus, 335 Bloomfield Avenue, West Hartford, CT, welcomes and serves families and individuals of all ages, stages, backgrounds and faiths. Our fitness, wellness and recreation, arts and culture, camp, early childhood education programs, classes, clubs and services are open to all. You Belong Here!
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