“Fall-ow” these tips for the best October

Say what you want about the summer’s heat and all the fun that it entails. Fall is one of the best times of the year. 

It’s still sunny and warm, but you get to enjoy the warmth of a sweatshirt. Colorful leaves are scattered on the ground and there are so many seasonal events that are worth attending. If you follow the list below, you are guaranteed to have the best fall.

First off, fall is the season of football. Whether you are a die-hard fan or are just in the stands to make friends, attending at least one game is crucial. Attend a tailgate before the game to pump up your school spirit. If you like to entertain, why not throw an NFL game day party complete with plenty of snacks such as buffalo chicken dip, wings and nachos?

Second, visit an apple orchard. Spending an hour or two in the orchard not only is great for those fall photo-ops but you can score some sweet treats, such as fresh-baked apple pie and caramel apples. Welsh Heritage Farms in Lake Crystal and A-Peeling Acres Orchard in New Ulm make a day trip to an orchard in a pinch. Throw on your favorite flannel and get picking!

If you go to an apple orchard, it is necessary to make a stop at a pumpkin patch. The Little Green Wagon and Autumn Acres Farms here in Mankato are worth going to to find pumpkins of all shapes and sizes. Find cute small ones to put in your dorm or large ones that can be carved into jack-o’-lanterns. Bonus tip: hit up a pumpkin patch and apple orchard on the same day and bake treats with all of your new harvests.

If walking through the woods doesn’t seem like the best way to get out and enjoy the air, find a corn maze. If you can’t find your way to the center, you’ll at least have fun trying. As well as pumpkins, Autumn Acres and Little Green Wagon host corn mazes. For an added thrill, go around sunset. Not being able to see in the dark only adds more fun. 

As October arrives, it is time to get into the Halloween spirit. There are several spooky events to attend. ValleyScare opens Saturday and runs through Halloween night. With plenty of haunting shows to attend, frightening mazes to walk and terrifying scare zones to make your way through, you’ll leave with nightmares for weeks. If you prefer to sleep, stick with the Great Pumpkin Fest side of the park for equally fun activities to participate in. Haunted hayrides are another chilling event to partake in. Chaska’s Abandoned Hayride and Cottage Grove’s Haunting Experience on Highway 61 have two of the scariest in the state.

Finally, there is no better way to end fall than celebrating Halloween. With the days of trick-or-treating long behind us, go to a Halloween party all dressed up. Pro tip: your costume should outdo the one you wore last year. If going out and partying isn’t your style, curl up on the couch, grab the popcorn and candy and throw on your favorite scary or non-scary Halloween movie. 

If you follow these tips, you should have no problem saying that fall 2021 was the best one yet.

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