Your checklist for fall fun

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  • Katie Barnes—Monitor file

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  • ELIZABETH FRANTZ—Monitor file

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Monitor staff
Saturday, September 09, 2017

Fall might not officially start until Sept. 22, but many in New Hampshire consider Labor Day the beginning of the season. Already the signs of autumn are popping up. There are so many fun activities to take advantage of in the region, so you better get started soon if you’re going to fit it all in before the snow begins to fall.

1. Visit an orchard for some apple picking. Apple Hill Farm and Carter Hill Orchard tied for first-place for best apple-picking in Concord in this year’s Cappies.

2. Go bobbing for apples. You’ll need to put the fruits of your labor to good use.

3. Visit a local farm to select the perfect carving pumpkin. You’ll want to find one without soft spots, wrinkles or mold that would indicate early spoilage.

4. Make apple pie or apple crisp. Look for recipes every Wednesday in print or online at concordmonitor.com/arts-life/food.

5. Decorate or carve a pumpkin. You can do something traditional, like cut out a jack-o-lantern face, or spice it up with paint or decoupage.

6. Can or preserve the bounty of your summertime garden. You can find tips on the Monitor’s Pinterest board.

7. Visit a haunted house. Not far from Concord is the House in Haunted Hill in the town of Hill. Some of the larger attractions in the state are Spooky World, just south of Manchester in Litchfield; Haunted Acres in Candia; Canobie Lake Screamfest in Salem and the Ghoullog in North Conway.

8. Complete a corn maze. Hopkinton’s Beech Hill Farm has a maze with themes of Canada’s 150 Trivial Pursuit and Camo’s K-9 Challenge. In Meredith, Moulton Farm’s maze opens Sept. 23. New England’s football hero, Tom Brady, is commemorated with a maze in his image at Sherman Farms in Conway.

9. Jump in leaves. You could just rake them up and discard them, but that’s less fun. Fall curbside pickup of leaves in Concord usually takes place in late October and early November. You can find more information at concordnh.gov.

10. Roast pumpkin seeds. Just cook the clean seeds at 300 degrees for about 45 minutes. Then, top with salt.

11. Make leaf pressings. Place leaves under paper and rub with crayons, or place leaves between the pages of heavy books to dry. 

12. Taste some fresh apple cider. It takes 15 bushels of apples, ground into the pomace, to make about 50 gallons of cider.

13. Plan an awesome Halloween costume. Visit a costume shop, thrift store or your attic for cool attire.

14. Sip pumpkin spice flavored drinks. Yum.

15. Enjoy a fall or harvest festival, like Warner’s Fall Foliage Festival on Oct. 6 to 8.

16. Watch a spooky movie. Halloweentown? Friday the 13th? It’s The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown?

17. Go hunting for deer, turkey, moose or pheasant. Make sure to get the right gear and permit first.

18. Check out a local football game. Don’t forget to bring a blanket in your team’s colors for those chilly nights in the stands.

19. Decorate your home with cornstalks, sunflowers, gourds, and mums.

20. Drive around to check out the bright foliage colors or, better yet, take a train or boat ride around to see the trees from a new angle. The M/S Mount Washington can bring you around Lake Winnipesaukee and the Hobo Railroad in Lincoln will run its Harvest Time Express.

21. Bake some pies, like apple, pumpkin or pecan.

22. Unpack your comfy sweaters and classic plaid flannel shirts. Temperatures will be dropping.

23. Bake some homemade bread like oatmeal, banana or pumpkin.

24. Go antiquing. Check out a plethora of shops along Route 4 from Concord to Lee.

25. Try a new soup or chili recipe. You’ll want something warm in your stomach for those chilly days.

26. Build a scarecrow. Take some old clothes, a broom, and a little creativity. The Monitor also has tips online.

27. Go on a hayride.

28. Make caramel apples or make a caramel dip for apple slices.

29. Hang out around a bonfire.

30. Go on a nature walk. It’s one of the best ways to discover new foliage views and take in that crisp autumn air.

31. Make popcorn balls.

32. Knit a scarf. Even if you’ve never knit before, scarves can be a simple way to learn. Plus, you’ll end up with something cozy to wear this winter.

33. Participate in an Oktoberfest celebration or check out the Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce’s celebration of German food, entertainment and beer at its 15th Schnitzelfest on Sept. 23.

34. Change the clocks for the end of Daylight Savings on Nov. 5. Those shorter days have arrived.

35. Make a list of things you’re grateful for in advance of Thanksgiving.