I used to hate fall, there I said it! I think pumpkin spice lattes taste nasty. I detest football season. I think boots are a pain. I think fallen fall leaves are a massive pain, and I’d rather be sweating in 110-degree weather than slightly chilly. So why am I writing a fall bucket list, you might ask? Well stay with me, I know it’s an unpopular opinion and most of you like to stand on your rooftops proclaiming that “Fall is in the crisp air!” But while I’ll always be pro summer, becoming a mom has helped me find a special place in my heart for fall and all its seasonal joy. Here are my newfound reasons to appreciate the fall and bucket list items for every mom and her family to enjoy.
Go All Out For Halloween
I will say this about fall, it features my favorite event, HALLOWEEN — the perfect time to go all out with your family and dress up, go out and fill up with sugar. If your neighborhood isn’t big on trick or treating, there are many local events you can attend, such as St. Augustine Alligator Farm’s Creatures of the Night, which runs this year from October 25th – 27th, 2019, from 5.30 pm to 7:00 pm. You can enjoy the regular exhibits as well as many trick or treat tables with treats, reptiles and birds to pet and take photos with, and more. Check the Alligator Farm’s website for full details. World Gold Village is also hosting a Spooky Halloween Bash on October 12th, 2019, from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. It which will include a Halloween costume contest for kids, Halloween golf cart parade, kids bounce zone, and trick or treating. See the Eventbrite and Facebook page for the event for full information. Need ideas for a last-minute costume? Check out St. Augustine Mom’s Blog’s Five Easy Last Minute Costumes for Under Five Dollars.
Enjoy a Local Fall Festival
There are many fun fall events in and around St. Augustine, my favorite for the past few years has been Sykes Family Farms’ crop maze, which runs from October 5 – October 27, 2019, and features a 9-acre maze, with various route options for kids and adults or those up for more of a challenge! The event also includes a pumpkin patch, hayride, farm animals, playground and more. Check the Sykes Family Farm website for full information and admission prices.
Spend Early Evening at the Park
Fall is the perfect time to stop by the park after school. The weather is not quite as sweltering as Florida in the summer and the days are still long enough to enjoy some early evening daylight. Check out our complete guide to each and every park in St. Johns County (conveniently organized by zip code) and try some new parks you’ve never explored.
Pick Up a Pumpkin and Decorate Your Porch
Pumpkin patches make amazing mini photoshoot locations, whether with a professional photographer or just on your smartphone. There are lots of local pumpkin patches around town this time of year. My personal favorite, in addition to the previously mentioned patch at Sykes and Cooper, is the annual First United Methodist Church’s patch at 118 King Street, St. Augustine, Florida 32084. Once you’ve picked the perfect pumpkin check out our 5 Easy Pumpkin Decorating Ideas for Kids and see who can make the most creative pumpkin.
Attend Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party
Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party at Walt Disney World is a Halloween experience you’re sure to remember for a lifetime. Sure, it’s a pricier option to the other fall bucket list items here, but it’s guaranteed to be a magical way to experience Disney like never before. The event runs on select nights from August 16 through November 1, 2019, and is a separately ticketed event from the regular park tickets. Note that the Magic Kingdom will close to regular ticket holders at 6 pm during these dates and the Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party will run from 7:00 pm to midnight. Some of the many offerings at this years event are special character meet and greets, such as Moana, Jack Skellington, and Mickey and Minnie in their Halloween attire, the Hocus Pocus Villain Spelltacular, trick or treating throughout the park, an all-night Disney Junior dance party at Story Book Circus, and the new Not So Spooky Spectacular firework display. Check the official Disney World site for full information and ticketing.
Visit a Petting Zoo
Celestial Farms in Jacksonville is a little bit of a drive but well worth it. It’s a farm animal rescue and educational organization where you’ll be able to pet the adorable bunnies, lambs, goats, pigs and more. The farm also has tractor rides, picnic areas, a game field, party space and meeting areas, and a playground. Admission is free, although I encourage you to leave donations. St. Augustine also has several other family-friendly farms in our area!
I hope I’ve inspired even those as bitter as myself when it comes to fall time to find a little joy in the season. Let us know what your favorite fall activity is in the comments. Now go and enjoy your pumpkin spice latte!