Get Ready For Fall With 20 Fun Activities You’ll Love and Are Budget-Friendly

With summer nearing its end, I’m not shy to admit that fall is my favorite season. Sandwiched between hot and cold temperatures, there is much to do in the season of two names, with autumn, more formally. Leaf-peeping is just one of the various fall activities that make maximum use of all our senses for an affordable budget. Still warm enough to stay outdoors with just a light jacket or sweater, this season exploits nature’s beauty.

20 Fun Activities You’ll Enjoy That Are Budget-Friendly

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Let go of the summer and ease into the fall beauty. Whether looking for fun for yourself and your significant other, your family, or with friends, you’ll enjoy our list. With creativity, you can have the best time without spending much money. Your kids can get more use of their five senses in a shorter time than a sensory bin. Couples on a date can have fun getting to know each other without splurging their dollars. Most of our fall list highlights budget-friendly activities.

1. Fall Foliage Near You

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There is always fall foliage at a place near you. I’m partial to the East Coast, especially New York and New England, but they are everywhere. Get a fall foliage map or a leaf-peeping app to find the best time and place to experience the colors nearby. Go on a scenic drive with the top down, ride a bike, or hike to explore the area.

2. Take A Breath-Taking Hot Air Balloon

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A unique way to see fall foliage is the panoramic bird’s eye view by way of a hot air balloon. It’s not for the faint of heart who may have height concerns, but if you can hack it, it’s an exciting experience.

Another unique way to achieve an extraordinary view is by taking an open-air flight with a vintage WWI plane with the pilot sitting behind you. Even if you are adventurous, you may tremble initially, but it’s a majestic view. 

3. Take a Nature Walk

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Fall is a lovely time to take a nature walk, and you can combine a trail, photography, bridges, rivers, and an age-appropriate scavenger hunt or use nature words for Bingo. Ask your kids to find or take photos of signs of Fall. They’ll find squirrels finding acorns, birds flying south, falling leaves, and popular fall flowers like mums, dahlias, and yellow sunflowers.


4. Visit Farmer’s Markets

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It’s fun to go to a farmer’s market in the early fall to shop for the best products from owners who take such pride in their market. Many farmer’s markets stay open until late fall or even all year round.

Fall fruits and vegetables are plentiful in farmers’ markets and may include apples, pears, winter squash, mushrooms, pumpkins, arugula, broccoli, spinach, kale, carrots, turnips, and sweet potatoes. You’ll not only enjoy checking out their products, but you’ll also be saving money as well. 

 5. Corn Mazes At the Farm

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Speaking of farmer’s markets, you can visit farms and their barns for quintessential fall activities with your family, on a date, or with friends. We went annually both before and after we had kids, having the best time.

You can’t help not loving the pastoral scene, hay rides, picking pumpkins, having apple cider, climbing hay bales, and petting the animals. Experience a corn maze day or night, and try the flashlight haunted maze.

6. All Things Pumpkin

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Pumpkins are such a symbol of fall that it deserves their own category for their versatility. Starting with picking the pumpkins as a fun adventure with kids, you can display them on your steps, carve them for Jack-o-Lanterns, pull out the pumpkin seeds for planting or roasting, or make pumpkin bread, muffins, pie, puree or soup, spice up your latte. You can also use your pumpkin for compost for your garden or feed your animals, who may love you more than you desire.

7. Stargaze the Fall Sky

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Grab a telescope or binoculars and find the new constellations in North America during the cooler fall evenings. The Harvest Moon is the full bright Moon that usually occurs at the start of autumn. Before electricity,  farmers used the light from the moon to harvest their crops.

According to Celestron, autumn skies have abundant star clusters, the brightest and nearest galaxy, binary stars, double stars, and red supergiant stars that they detail in their guide.

8. Watch the new TV Fall Lineup or Stream Fall Movies

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Get your popcorn popping for the new season. Though most of us stream these days, we still have a handful of shows to look forward to in the fall TV season, which gets into full swing in the fall season, with either season or premieres for the extensive five broadcast networks ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC, and The CW.

You can’t beat cozying up for those classic movies fall movies you’ll love, like When Harry Met Sally, Good Will Hunting, Autumn in New York, and Fantastic Mr. Fox for your kids.

9. Reading in the Fall Season

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Reading is a year-round activity for most readers, but certain books have an unmistakable autumn vibe. The fireplace is the perfect place to read, especially as it gets colder and darker earlier. With Halloween smack in the middle of the season, you may find yourself looking for those certain dark or spooky stories like Edgar Allan Poe’s The Cask of Amontillado or The Black Cat,  the Brontë sisters, Charlotte or Emily who wrote Jane Eyre or Wuthering Heights respectively. They are perfect autumn reads, providing the dark, chilly atmosphere.

10. Visit Literary Landmarks

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Find some of your favorite authors near you, like Mark Twain’s House in Hartford, Connecticut,  Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst, Massachusetts, or Rowan Oak, William Faulkner’s home in Oxford, Mississippi. Learn about what inspired them to write their masterpieces. 

11. Sit Around a Fire Pit

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Warm up your fall evenings with a bonfire or a fire pit, roast marshmallows, play music, invite friends, and sing along if you know someone who plays guitar. Those nights may be unpredictable, with very little to do, but enjoy your company and the fall evening mood. Sitting outdoors always reminds me of camping, and everyone would tell stories. This activity is pleasing on many levels; your pocket won’t mind.

If you don’t have a fire pit, go to a restaurant that has one outdoors. They became very popular during the pandemic, and many restaurants kept outdoor seating with fire pits and heaters.

12. Visit A Pier

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Many activities happen on large piers, celebrating the season with riverboat cruises, amusement park rides, food, kayaking, and booths.  Visit a dock and watch the boats go out and return. Take a sweater or blanket and enjoy the serene view at night.

13. Go to an Apple Orchard

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Apple picking season is typically from Labor Day Weekend to early October. Apple orchards are everywhere, especially in California, New York, New England, the Midwest, and southwestern states.

It’s a satisfying activity for everyone and kids of various heights. You learn about the different apple varieties and take home your favorites to make apple pie.

 14. Have A Fall Picnic

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Bring a warm blanket, or find a picnic table at your favorite park surrounded by colorful falling leaves. It’s a beautiful time to relax and take it all in.  Bring some warm apple cider, wine, and cheese, and enjoy nature’s optimal time.  

15. It’s Football Season

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Invite friends to watch the football game, or go to the game and have a tailgate party. Go to Costco or your favorite warehouse club, get the best snacks and drinks, and enjoy the game with friends or family. Don’t forget the chicken wings!

16. Oktoberfest and Other Festivals

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There are a ton of outdoor festivals featuring craftwork, entertainment, food, music,  beer, and wine tasting. There’s Oktoberfest, a German tradition celebrated around the world, that gets celebrated more in September than its coined name.

Most festivals are outdoors and may have tractor pulls, apple-bobbing, and ax-throwing contests.  apple cider, and crafts. You buy a fall wreath or make your own. There are harvest festivals that celebrate the end of the crop season. 

17. Covered Wooden Bridges

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Before cars, Americans traveled by horse and buggy, and more than 10,000 covered wooden bridges spanned the American landscape, stimulating economic growth. Roughly 750 remain, many in beautiful condition for cars and bikers to pass over country rivers and streams. Most are in New England, Ohio, Oregon, and Pennsylvania. The covered bridge is in New Hampshire.

The moving love story and best seller Bridges of Madison County highlighted the gorgeous historic bridges in Iowa. We live near two beautiful covered bridges in Connecticut (West Cornwall and Kent), an excellent setting for a picnic and meditation.

18. Antiquing in the Fall

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While you are tooling around the country, seeking the best foliage, you may become aware that those places have open barns and shops brimming with antiques they may set outdoors. Also, many avid pickers shop during this period looking for old things people are happy to discard because they don’t fit with their more contemporary furnishings.

These pickers will help others get rid of these things for the families and offer a small amount of cash. However, they may walk away with something more meaningful in value to them that seemed like little to those who had it in storage. If you like antiquing, you can go on a treasure hunt after you become less in awe of your leaf-peeping activity.

19. Preparing For Halloween

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When you think of Halloween, smack in the middle of the fall season, it attracts a lot of attention for finding or making masks and costumes, decorating with spider webs, spooky ghosts, and fake hands coming out of your lawn. Whether hosting a Halloween party or going trick or treat, you can have fun preparing certain foods, roasting marshmallows,  drinks, orange & black desserts, and candy corn.

Even if you are not getting ready for the holiday, walking around neighborhoods with Halloween-decorated houses and porches or visiting haunted houses is fun.


20. Happy Thanksgiving to All

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Thanksgiving is among the most significant fall events, celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November to give thanks for food and life with family and friends. It is a festive day with servings of roasted turkey and notable fall bountiful foods like yams, spinach, potatoes, and vegetable casseroles.

It began as an autumn harvest feast in the early 17th century shared between the Plymouth colonists and the Wampanoag, though it didn’t become an official national holiday until 1863. It remains an inclusive holiday for everyone.

Final Thoughts

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Each season has its own benefits. Having four seasons is a key reason I cannot move where I can’t experience them all. Fall offers the most natural beauty, fantastic activities, and climate variety.

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10 Things Boomers Loved Before the Advent of Smartphones Changed Everything 

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Throughout time, there have been debates about the superiority of one gender over the other. However, whether women exceed men at specific tasks has been a common conversational topic. The following is a list of things women are better at than men, based on opinions shared by different people on a popular online forum.

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In the whirlwind of modern life, we often find ourselves consumed by the pressing demands and distractions surrounding us. Amidst this chaos, essential aspects of our lives often slip through the cracks of our attention. These are the overlooked gems, the vital elements that hold the power to impact our well-being and the world around us significantly.

This article was initially published and syndicated by The Cents of Money.

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