Many people love fall for its brisk days, changing colors and how it introduces a season of pumpkin-spiced fare. In Hampton Roads, fall might be your favorite season for many reasons from the variety of festivals to the mild yet brisk fall weather. Across Hampton Roads residents can find a span of great traditional fall picks, such as pumpkin picking in Virginia Beach and spooky ghost tours in Chesapeake. Whether your home is in Norfolk, Suffolk or another city in Hampton Roads, here are a few fall season activities and favorites you won’t want to miss -
Pick Your Pumpkin – and then some (Chesapeake)
Picking pumpkins is extra fun at the Hickory Ridge Farm in Chesapeake because families can enjoy much more than choosing a pumpkin.
Every weekend in October, the farm’s fall festival includes pony rides, hayrides with storybook characters, face painting and a bounce house. Kids can also meet farm animals and run through the corn maze. For fall hours and additional details visit HamptonRoads.com
Get Spooked! - Haunted Hayrides & more (Virginia Beach/Chesapeake)
Hunt Club Farm is a main attraction in Virginia Beach during the month of October. From the hayride through the woods filled with haunted creatures and spooks, to the pumpkin patch, fresh apple cider and petting farm, there’s something for the whole family to enjoy.
If you plan to ride the haunted hayride, especially if you plan your trip close to Halloween weekend, it’s best to get your tickets in advance. Find them on the Haunted Hunt Club website for $25/person. (Hunt Club also holds auditions for actors – start working on your scariest make-up and costume, and mark your calendar for August, you goblin you!).
If the idea of the Haunted Hunt Club gives you nightmares (or if your the type of family that lives for the thrill of a good spook), there’s a fun and spooky train ride at Northwest River Park in Chesapeake. The Ghost Train is a half-hour ride that’s family friendly, and train riders are encouraged to come in costume.
Clink Your Glass to the Harvest Season (Norfolk)
Just how lucky are we to live in Hampton Roads? Wine Enthusiast Magazine called Virginia one of the 10 best destinations in the world for wine. Indulge in a couple glasses of wine with friends and family while enjoying the crisp fall weather and the Elizabeth River waterfront view at this fall festival.
If you can’t make the weekend of the 18th, Chesapeake’s annual wine festival is October 11, and tickets are the same price.
Intensify Training Time to Prepare for the Best Races of the Year (Virginia Beach, Norfolk)
Fall is a great time of year to train for a race in Hampton Roads. The annual Wicked 10K draws crowds to the Virginia Beach Oceanfront, where runners dress up in costumes and Halloween faire! Even if you’re not quite ready for longer distances, there are a number of great 5Ks in the fall, including the Beach Monster Dash on October 12 and the Taste of Town Center on November 15, both in Virginia Beach.
While these are all great races, Houser Home Team’s favorite race pick for fall 2015 is the new race J&A Racing will put on, the Blue Moon Harbor Lights Half Marathon and 5K. The event will take place in Norfolk the week before Thanksgiving, so you’re sure to work up a sweat and really earn those post race Blue Moons (and that Thanksgiving Day feast).
Celebrate with Local Fare. (Hampton, Suffolk)
Food festivals are a great fall tradition in Hampton Roads, and it’s no surprise that seafood is a popular featured food. If you’re planning an oyster roast in the backyard of your Hampton Roads home, check out these tips for hosting an oyster roast in the Tidewater tradition. Otherwise, any of the following food festivals are a good bet for fall -
October 17-19: Poquoson Seafood Festival (Poquoson)
October 24: City Center Oyster Roast (Hampton)
November 15: Aww Shucks! Oyster Roast at the Virginia Living Museum (Newport News)
If shellfish isn’t your style, there are still great options. Check out Suffolk’s Peanut Festival, which attracts 125,000 people each year, or the food truck gathering planned at City Center in Newport News.
Whatever your personal picks for fall activities are, enjoy the season and all that Hampton Roads has to offer. It’s certainly an easy task for fall in the seven cities!
And for the weekends when you don’t have an activity or football game, consider making a few updates to your home. In our last post, we cover some things you’ll need to do before you put your home on the market in Hampton Roads – if you do them now, you’ll have time to enjoy the upgrades in your home before you decide to sell it. [Link to previous post]
What are your favorite fall activities? What would you add to the list?