As fall hits down South and we enjoy a much needed cool off, I am already plotting how I will spend this fun time of year. I may not be a pumpkin spice latte, decorate the house with fall decor kinda gal, but I do enjoy this time of year. I choose to celebrate the season by getting out there and having fun!
The St. Augustine area offers so many ways to have a good time in the fall, so I decided to put together a bucket list to make sure I don’t miss out on the many offerings and ways I can treat my family to a good time. This year my fall bucket list has three main categories of fun: ‘Get Outside’, ‘Get Spooky’ and ‘Go to a Fall Festival.’
Do a Beach Clean-up: International Coastal Clean-up Day is the day to join forces with 800,000 volunteers around the globe and clean debris from our shores. On Saturday, September 15, 2018, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon bring the family, a water bottle and sunscreen to The GTM Environmental Education Center located at 505 Guana River Rd. in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32081 and demonstrate how to be a good steward of our earth to the kiddos.
Run a 5k: The annual Jail Break Escape will be held October 27, 2018, at 8 am and is the ideal race for runners, walkers and strollers alike. This family-friendly event starts at the Authentic Old Jail and goes toward the Atlantic Ocean via the Vilano Bridge. Participants of all ages and abilities are invited to take part in this Halloween festivity.
Run a half marathon: Dubbed the most scenic race in the country, the St. Augustine 5k, 10k, half marathon and kids fun run will take place Sunday, November 11, 2018. Registration information can be found on the website.
Tour the Old Jail: One of Henry Flagler’s structures, the Old Jail served as the city’s prison from 1891 through 1953 and it housed some of the city’s most violent and dangerous criminals, Today, tours of the facility are led by costumed actors and provide a close up look at the men’s and women’s cells, the Sheriff and his family’s living quarters (adjacent to the prisoners), the gallows and a collection of weapons. In the fall, tours operate beginning at 9am and end at 4:30pm and some tour companies offer spooky night tours as well.
Creatures of the Night at the Alligator Farm:Join the wild side for 3 nights of treats, costumes, and fun from October 27-29, 2018. Meet eerie bugs and beasts in this hands-on experience while collecting creepy creature cards around the park. Sure to be a spooktacular time! Tickets for non-members are $10 for adults and $8 for children (2-11).
Haunted Barn at the Rype & Readi Downtown Farm Market: The barn is transformed under the cover of darkness and scares and frights abound for adults and kids over 12 years old Friday and Saturday Nights in October from 7-9:30pm. For kiddos under 12 visit the barn for the Not-So-Spooky night on Friday, Oct 19 and Sunday, Oct 28th from 6-8:30pm. This is a Trick-or-Treat opportunity to tour through the Haunted barn with NO SCARING! Just laughs and treats. There will be delicious Hot Dogs, Bratwurst, BBQ Smoked Chicken, Ice Cream Shakes and other fun food available for purchase, sure satisfy the crankiest of ghosts. Canned goods are required for entrance along with a ticket and they will be donated to benefit local charities. Tickets are $8 or $5 with a donation of a canned good.
GO TO A FALL FESTIVAL
St. Augustine Sing Out Loud Festival: The largest free music festival in St. Johns County returns for three weekends in September 2018. With hundreds of musical acts over four weekends at multiple venues, including the St. Augustine Amphitheatre, the Ponte Vedra Concert Hall, and Colonial Oak Music Park, the third annual Sing Out Loud Festival promises to be one of the most exciting and eclectic presentations of musical performances.
St. Augustine Greek Festival: This year, from October 12-14, 2018 come out with the family to celebrate all things Greek. Taste homemade Greek foods and Greek pastries, join in traditional Greek dancing and music, experience the outdoor marketplace and Kids Center with carnival rides, games, and other children’s activities. Adult Admission: $5. Kids 16 and under and military members with ID are free. Held at Francis Field, downtown St Augustine, near the parking garage.
First Friday Art Walk: On the first Friday of every month, St. Augustine’s art galleries welcome visitors to browse the latest art exhibits and enjoy refreshments and live entertainment at some 30 participating galleries. The monthly event takes place on the first Friday of every month from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m., rain or shine, throughout St. Augustine’s historic downtown area, from Aviles to King Streets, St. George Street and more — even over the Bridge of Lions onto Anastasia Island and the beach. This is definitely a get a sitter date night idea.
St. Augustine Arts and Crafts Festival: The 53rd Annual St. Augustine Arts and Craft Festival is being held November 24 and 25, 2018. This popular juried art fair showcases 150 top national and regional artists exhibiting paintings, pottery, jewelry, sculpture, woodworks, glass, and other unique fine art creations. The festival will also have food and beverages, live music, colonial crafts, a Kids Art Zone and the citywide Nights of Lights which create a fun Fall experience and a great way to start the shopping season.