Residents and visitors of Coastal Virginia are eager for the crisp season of fall to arrive. It is a great time to observe the wonderful change of seasons with our magnificent variety of tree and plant species and enjoy a true taste of nature. Here are 8 great ways to get out and enjoy all that Coastal Virginia has to offer in the fall:
1) Spend Time Out with Family — Witness the area transform into a different kind of playground— from Bike Nights and Guided Walking Tours at the Norfolk Botanical Gardens in Norfolk to Twilight Climbs amongst the bright foliage at the Virginia Aquarium’s Adventure Park. Spend a day at the 37th Annual Suffolk Peanut Festival which runs October 9-12th. This family-friendly event honors the city’s agriculture heritage and devotion to peanuts. Suffolk Peanut Fest has been featured in numerous magazines, including Southern Living, Best Festivals—Mid Atlantic, and Sauveurs, a French Cooking Magazine. You have a wide range of activities to consider including concerts, amusement rides, contests and competitions, a demolition derby, a truck and tractor pull, motorcycle rally, fireworks and much more. Click here for details- http://www.suffolkfest.org.
2) Visit Hunt Club Farm in Virginia Beach — Gather your friends and family and head to the Annual Halloween & Fall Festival at Hunt Club Farm. The Halloween Festival features a giant slide, rides for the kids, tractor drawn hay rides, giant hay piles for tumbling, petting farm animals, and jack-o-lanterns to pick and carve. Hunt Club Farm transforms at night and is known for its Haunted Hayride, Village of the Dead and Field of Screams – http://www.huntclubfarm.com .
3) Go Pumpkin Picking — Your family can pick your own pumpkins from a patch at any one of the working farms around Coastal Virginia. There are lots of free activities to keep children happy at many locations where pumpkins are being offered for sale – hayrides, corn mazes and more. Don’t forget to stock up on local fall produce like sweet potatoes, collards and fall squash. http://www.myactivechild.com/resources/seasonal-fun-hampton-roads/big-list-pumpkin-patches
4) Take on a Hobby – Coastal Virginia offers miles of Bent and Bermuda grasses, hardwood forests and perfectly kept greens which make the coastal area a utopia for golf enthusiasts. Our area contains many top-rate golf courses for you to enjoy in the mild fall weather – http://www.virginiabeachgolfer.com/vbg-golfcourses.html. It’s also a great time to take a photography or painting class offered at many locations including Norfolk Botanical Gardens or the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art.
5) For Animal Lovers – Take the kids back to the petting zoo at Hunt Club Farm, the only petting animal farm in Virginia Beach. The animals include ducks, llamas, cows, sheep, rabbits, miniature horses, cats, dogs, peacocks, turkeys, goats, donkeys and more. Or, help kick off Myths and Mysteries of the Deep week on October 18 for Hagfish Day at the Virginia Aquarium! On each day that week, there will be a creature feature cart highlighting the “cool” residents of the Cold Water gallery including deep sea isopods, octopus and lionfish!
6) Get Your Paddle On – Enjoy a relaxing paddle through the waterways and get an up close glimpse of Coastal Virginia’s amazing native wildlife in their natural surroundings. Take part in a memorable venture that’s not only eco-friendly, but camera-friendly as well. Not sure you are water bound? Join the Back Bay Restoration Foundation, Back Bay NWR and False Cape State Park for a tram tour with a unique opportunity to view the array of wildlife found in the area, from birds to reptiles. For more details, visit http://www.fws.gov/refuge/back_bay/.
7) Explore a Park — First Landing State Park located near the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia Beach is a beautiful 2,888-acre park that offers hiking, picnicking, biking, swimming, and nature programs – http://www.first-landing-state-park.org/.
8) Experience a New Taste – Head to Norfolk for the 27th Annual Town Point Virginia Wine Festival in Downtown Norfolk October 18th and 19th or the Rotary Chesapeake Wine Festival at Chesapeake City Park, October 11th. You can make your venue historical by attending the Yorktown Wine Festival, Saturday, October 4th or Pints & Pairings- Oktoberfest at the Williamsburg Lodge. If you rather be on the water, take the boat to the Urbanna Oyster Festival, November 7th and 8th.
Of course, hanging out at the beach in a blanket with a good book works well too! You certainly have plenty of beaches to choose from in Coastal Virginia!