Apples and touchdowns and goblins, oh my! Fall is here and she’s ready to break out the pumpkin spice and get this sweatshirt weather started! How can you spend the perfect fall day in Greater St. Cloud? Let us help!
Picking the plumpest
Whether it’s apples in an orchard or pumpkins in a patch, there’s something magical about the fall harvest season that prompts perfect family outings around Central Minnesota. Hungry for a Honeycrisp? Collegeville Orchards sells over twenty different varieties of apples in their shop! Plus, with a pumpkin patch on sight and a petting zoo for the family, this place is a must-stop in the fall in Central MN. Need to outfit your digs with the trendiest fall decor? Hidden Cove Orchard not only offers nearly a dozen different varieties of apples, but two different home decor gift shops onsite with irresistibly adorable goodies! Looking for the Jack O’ to your Lantern? A&G Produce & Corn Maze not only has a huge pumpkin patch, but also two different corn mazes, hayrides, a petting zoo, mini pony rides, and much more! BONUS: Don’t miss the pick your own apple experience at Fairhaven Farm – it’s delightfully sweet!
Let’s get spooky
Fall is all about cool weather, changing leaves, and of course, Halloween! Get your fright on right here at Molitor’s Haunted Acres. This terrifying attraction features a hayride of doom, several haunted houses, a nightmarish walk through the woods, and more that will leave you shaking for hours beyond. Not for the faint of heart! Equally scream-worthy is the Harvest of Horror, featuring a horrifying hayride, a creepy corn maze, a bone chilling haunted house, and a walk through the terribly frightening forest. Plus, this year they feature a Werewolf Experiment Escape Room! Looking for a kid-friendly alternative to the terror-inducing attractions listed here? Historic Harvest Festival, presented by the Stearns History Museum on September 25th features carnival games, crafts, demonstrations, a photo booth and more! There is also Boo at the Zoo at Hemker Park & Zoo in Freeport on October 9th. Discounted admission to the zoo with advance tickets, fun fall activities, and trick or treating for all the little ones who show up in costume!
Cheer for the home team
Let’s face it, for a lot of people, fall means one thing: PUMPKIN SPICE LATT- wait, I mean, FOOTBALL! Friday night lights, college Saturdays and Sunday Funday’s watching your favorite NFL team. Fortunately, Central Minnesota is home to St. John’s University, where the Johnnies play at Clemens Stadium. This stadium was voted one of the top 10 “Dream Destination” college football stadiums by Sports Illustrated. Football + fall colors? Count us in! There is also Husky Stadium at St. Cloud State University nestled right along the banks of the Mississippi River where you can watch the best soccer action in town. Talk about field-goals, am I right? Looking for that young spark (and something fun to do on a Friday night)? St. Cloud Tech, Apollo High School, and St. Cloud Cathedral, as well as a number of surrounding area schools have amazing football programs that will bring you right back to your glory days.
Color watchers rejoice
There is no shortage of fall foliage in Central MN, and the number of ways to see it are endless! Of course, Quarry Park and Nature Preserve offers unique views of the pretty pallet in the sky, with reflections twinkling in the clear waters of granite quarries. It’s a sight to behold! Want to mix it up? Try checking out the colors along the banks of the Mississippi River – from a canoe! Clear Waters Outfitting is still offering paddle trips through the fall which allow you to get a unique perspective on the fall colors from atop the water’s surface. Are you the type of person who needs a destination for you fall hike? The Stella Maris Chapel Trail at St. John’s University winds around the shores of Lake Sagatagan, ending at a tiny chapel tucked into the woods like a secret. Your Instagram will thank you for this one, trust us.
Cool weather cravings
There are just some kinds of food and drinks that make us think fall. Fall means apples, and apples mean Milk and Honey Ciders! Hard cider in a beautifully scenic rural taphouse in the rolling hills of St. Joseph with a massive patio, what could be more fall? When the temps drop, we think comfort food, and there’s nothing quite like the home-cooking comforts of stew, mashed potatoes, and seafood chowder on the patio Olde Brick House. Fall is the season for Oktoberfest, after all, and we crave nothing more than a frothy pint of beer on the patio and a giant warm pretzel with beer-cheese dip from Granite City Food and Brewery. And when you need to cap it off with a sweet treat, what could be better than a warm homemade pie to go from Kay’s Kitchen (except maybe some caramel apple fritter bread from Clearwater Travel Plaza, or at least a tie).