How to make the best of this autumn season


Credit: Benjy Renton

Apples waiting to be sold at a farmstand in Upstate New York.

By Natalie Sukhman, Annabel Ives, and Julia Thomson

The leaves are changing colors, the temperatures are dropping… it is finally that time of year again and fall is upon us. With endless weekends ahead, you may be looking for exciting and interesting activities to do with your friends and family. Whether you want to go out or just stay in, there is lots to do this autumn in Westchester.

One of the best parts of fall is the beautiful weather. The temperature is perfect for spending the day outside, so it’s time to get out there and enjoy the fresh air! The Harvest Moon Farm and Orchard in North Salem, NY is a great way to take advantage of the season. At the farm, the options are unlimited; you can tour the farm, pick some apples, or even eat donuts. The apple picking is available both weekdays and weekends, and once you are tired of walking around, sit back, relax, and enjoy a scenic hayride around the farm. For younger children, they may appreciate a bouncy house, animal petting, pony rides, and face painting. There are various food vendors stationed along the farm, and live music to listen to while walking, talking, or eating. Ticket prices range from $5-$10 per person, for the event of your choice.

Looking for a scare? Take a walking tour of the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery or check out the Horseman’s Hollow, back for its seventh year at Philipsburg Manor in Sleepy Hollow, NY. The event is inspired by the well-known story, “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” and its iconic featured character, the Headless Horseman. Be ready to venture through a frightening corn maze, fun hayride, haunted house filled with plenty of scary rooms, and more. This event captures the spirit of Sleepy Hollow and definitely is a must-see. Tickets go on sale on October 7 and the event is open every weekend (Friday to Sunday) until Halloween. Make sure to buy them in advance, as they sell out quickly. Refreshments are served all night in the Hollow’s on-site café. When asked about her opinion of the Horseman’s Hollow, sophomore Jordan Wade said, “I got really scared. I went with my friends and it was a blast! The costumes they wear are amazing and really convincing. The corn maze is probably the most creepy part because the actors do a great job of sneaking up on you.” Robert Patterson has attended the Horseman’s Hollow every year for the past three years. He said, “The Horseman’s Hollow takes the haunted house idea to the extreme and creates a terrifying indoor and outdoor labyrinth of witches and zombies.”

Don’t miss The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze, a beautiful and awe-inspiring event at Van Cortlandt Manor in Croton-on-Hudson. Now in its 12th year, this spectacular event began in 2005 and has only gotten better and bigger every year. Walk through thousands of hand-carved pumpkins showcasing an astounding and astonishing array of creatures and characters, and themed sections such as ones inspired by Jurassic Park, Undersea Aquarium, Buzzing Beehive, Flesh-Eating Plants, and more. If you get hungry, stop by Café Blazé, operated by Geordane’s of Irvington. The Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze occurs throughout October and the beginning of November. Tickets are $16 for children (ages 3 through 17) and $20 for adults. This event takes about an hour to walk through and is only a short 20-minute drive from Tarrytown.

There are many places to go fishing around Westchester. The Long Island Sound has several ports where you can charter a boat, or bring your own. According to 8th Grade dean, Trevor Ogden, “Fishing gets better the later you go in October.” The only gear you need is a bucket, a strong fishing rod, and lots of warm clothes such as waterproof pants, raincoats, and gloves. Remember to bring food because the longer you fish the more you catch! There are various types of fish in the sound; bluefish are a fun catch, but you can also catch sea robins and maybe even trout. You can either bring the fish home for a delicious fall meal or you can release them back into the water. If you have never been fishing, don’t worry; it’s easy to pick up. Fishing is a fun fall activity as long as you remember warm clothes and plenty of good food.

Annabel Ives and Julia Thomson contributed to the reporting for this article.

A trapeze artist performs at Horseman’s Hollow.
Roya Wolfe
A trapeze artist performs at Horseman’s Hollow.