There is so much to love and enjoy about fall. Twenty-nine percent of Americans surveyed said autumn is their favorite season, according to a 2013 study from YouGov, making it the nation's favorite time of the year. I’m one of those 29%.
My fall festivities kicked off early last month when I visited the Fall Harvest Festival at Gold Hill Mesa with a childhood friend of mine, her daughters and another friend. It was a beautiful Saturday. A band entertained the audience, filling a small park near the community center with easy tunes. Food trucks dotted the grounds, enticing us all with the scents and tastes of pizza, tamales, frozen yogurt, doughnuts and salads. Kids and dogs ran about, playing tag, waiting in line for the bouncy houses, getting up-close with animals at the petting zoo and taking pony rides. Families lined up for photos at the family photo booth, perused vendor booths and had impromptu photo shoots at the pumpkin patch.
I’ve never gotten to “celebrate” autumn the way I have since moving to Colorado, which means I take every opportunity to immerse myself in it. Here are a few of my favorite ways to have fun during the season:
Apple and pumpkin picking: Who doesn’t love apple and pumpkin pies made with fresh ingredients? Or, why not pick fruit and gourds for the fun of it? Venetucci Farm hosts an annual pumpkin giveaway, a 50-plus-year tradition. For apples, take a day trip to Happy Apple Farm in Penrose (you’ll also find blackberries, raspberries, pears and pumpkins here).
Leaf-peeping: Colorado’s golden aspens usually peak in color in late September or early October. A favorite drive of mine is down through CO 67 into Cripple Creek. It’s a good day trip, aspens or no.
Baking: See apple and pumpkin picking for fresh pies. But I also enjoy making and eating cookies, cakes and brownies. I also want to try my hand at the peach dumplings featured in the Edition’s Sept. 11 issue. (“On the Table: Ring in fall with Aunt Deb’s peach dumplings.”)
From apple picking to traipsing the pumpkin patch, inhaling hot cocoa (ample amounts of whipped cream included, please), indulging in the delectably mouth-watering taste of pumpkin and apple pies, and pigging out on candied treats and stuffed turkey galore for Halloween and Thanksgiving, autumn will always be my top pick for best time of the year.
To keep up with upcoming events, fall-related and otherwise, check The Edition’s weekly Happening This Week calendar on page 2, spotlighting four featured events each week; and flip to our Around The Neighborhood calendar on page 13, with a look at both current and upcoming events.
Breeanna Jent is a multi-beat journalist who has reported previously in California and across Colorado’s Front Range. She has lived in the Pikes Peak region for four years and joined the Pikes Peak Newspapers team as editorial assistant in January 2018. Drop her a line or send your calendar events and community photos to email@example.com.