For all you desperate souls still clinging to the last days of Indian Summer… pack up your flip-flops; it’s over. The leaves are turning and there’s a distinct nip in the air. Fall is here; bringing with it cider donuts by the dozen, pumpkin-infused latte’s and beers, and endless hours of football.
If you’re a parent of young children (as we are here at Chew Chainz HQ), you’ve got to start adjusting your activity schedule accordingly. The beach is out. Sandbox too, for that matter. If you spent the dog days of summer cooling your heels around a pool, lake, sprinkler, fountain, hydrant, or any other form of water, it’s time to consider alternatives. Luckily, your friends over at Chew Chainz have your back. These are our favorite fall activities with kids (with a slight regional bias), AND a recommended food and drink pairing.
Apple Picking - This is a no brainer. Everyone has fun, and you’ll be eating your haul for a few weeks. (Apple crisp a la mode is my go-to.) Many orchards will also boast a petting zoo, live music or even a beer garden. Check out Fishkill Farms or Penning’s Orchard for good options close to NYC. Pair with cider donuts and coffee.
County Fair - Looking for a classic souvenir of fall? Well, head to the midway at your nearest county fair. The games are rigged and the prizes are cheap, but your son or daughter won’t know that the stuffed prize that you paid $25 to win, is worth about $1 and dates back to the 1990’s. Come for the midway, but stay for the pig races, tractor pull, blue ribbon vegetables, and of course the food. Pair with fried dough and whatever fits in your flask. If you don’t live in fair country, Italian festivals are a great substitute. We hit the Feast of San Gennaro in Little Italy this year and it didn’t disappoint. Pair with sausage and peppers, and of course, cannolis.
Catch a Game - Fall is all about sports. Your child may not be ready for a 6-hour tailgate at the Meadowlands, but don’t let that dash your hopes of starting the fan education early. Whether soccer or football is your game, you can always find some decent, accessible high school or college action that’s perfect for teaching your kid the ropes.
Pair with a hot pretzel and beer, or hot chocolate for the little one.
Pumpkin Carving - Here’s another obvious activity. Start shopping around early for just the right Jack-O-Lantern and sketch out some concept art before you weild the knife. If we’re being honest, it’s probably the most artistic thing that you’ll do all year. Be sure to make your kids scoop out the slimy innards with their bare hands. And, use your leftovers. Pair with roasted pumpkin seeds or pumpkin pie.
Get in the Kitchen - As you’ve probably noticed, it’s not just the activities that we love about the fall, but the food too. It’s a great time to get in the kitchen and whip up something special with your kids. Leftover apples or pumpkin? Get working on a pie. Are you skipping the tailgate, but watching the game at home? How about some chili Besides, you might need those extra pounds to make it through winter.
Did we leave anything off of this list? Send us your suggestions: firstname.lastname@example.org; and share your fall pictures with us: #chewchainz