By Dr. Cheryl Boyer, Contributor and Ammie Bryant, Editor
One of the best parts about the fall season is finding ways to enjoy the great outdoors, whether that’s with your family or for some good ol’ “me” time. Wonderful fall weather doesn’t last long in Oklahoma so get out there and enjoy it while you can.
Here are some ideas to help you fill your fall with fun:
TAKE EVENING WALKS AROUND YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD OR A PARK.
We recommend the walking trails at Couch and Boomer Parks as well as the Kameoka Trail which winds throughout the city (including through both parks).
VISIT A PUMPKIN PATCH OR CORN MAZE.
The Grider Farm Pumpkin Patch just south of Perkins and west on Vinco Road is a great option for anyone wanting to go pick their own pumpkins.
Lost Creek Safari will be offering its first pumpkin patch starting Oct. 1, and will be open every weekend from 11am until 4pm through the end of October. Every other day of the week, visits are by reservation only. Call 405-707-0403 or Email questions to email@example.com.
The Stillwater Noon Lions and Highland Park United Methodist Church are teaming up for “The Pumpkin Jubilee” from Oct. 8-31. Hours will run Sun.-Fri. 12pm-8pm and Sat. 10am-8pm. The event will include a pumpkin patch. Additional events include free carriage rides, 4pm-8pm and an outdoor movie (“It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown”) at 7pm on Oct. 8. Live music will be offered every Thursday night and Trunk-or-Treat in the Pumpkin Patch on Oct. 31.
CARVE A PUMPKIN!
The Botanic Garden at OSU will offer a special program on Pumpkin Crafting on Oct. 15 from 10am to 12pm. Cost is $10 per family and includes painting and carving supplies and pumpkins. Supplies are limited so please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org to save your spot.
PICK YOUR OWN APPLES.
For this activity you might have to travel out of the area unless you know someone with their own apple trees. Know of a public “pick-your-own” orchard in the area? Shoot us an email at ammie at stillwaterliving.com or comment here to let us know so that we can share the details with our readers!
GO ON A SCAVENGER HUNT!
Drive/walk/hike around and do a photo scavenger hunt of beautiful fall foliage—maybe even save a few fallen leaves.
CAMPFIRE AND S’MORES.
Light up the firepit and sit outside to enjoy crisp fall nights. Don’t have a firepit at home? Stillwater Steel has some great fire rings to choose from. They can even do custom orders. Rent a camping spot at Lake McMurtry and truly get back to nature. Some of our favorite memories involve the Lake and laying on a blanket under the stars in October.
Google tells us that Zombie Paintball is a popular thing these days. The Orr Family Farm in Oklahoma City offers zombie paintball, a corn maze, pumpkin patch, train rides, tractor-pulled hay rides, and a petting zoo. Sounds like a full day of fun to us!
OUTDOOR ADVENTURE MYSTERY TOUR.
Everyone likes a good mystery. Grab your sneakers and go! Oklahoma State University Department of Wellness offers Outdoor Adventure Mystery Tours on Oct. 2 and Nov. 6. You don’t know where the outdoor adventure will be or what it will entail, but it will be awesome! For more information and to register, visit the Outdoor Adventure office located at the base of the Colvin Center climbing wall. You must be registered in advance.
Tyler Siems with special guests Tanner Bryan and John Homer will perform at the OSU Botanic Garden on Oct. 7 from from 5:45pm until 7:30pm. Load up a picnic basket or lawn chair and settle in beneath the beautiful sycamore allee to enjoy an evening of old country and traditional/folk songs.
The Pumpkin Jubilee will have live music every Thursday night at Highland Park Methodist Church.
FRIDAY FOOD TRUCKS & TUNES IN DOWNTOWN STILLWATER, OCT. 7.
Enjoy Downtown Stillwater, food truck cuisine, and live music. Entertainment begins at 6pm and runs until 7:30pm and then again from 8pm to 9:30pm.
VISIT THE STILLWATER FARMERS’ MARKET.
Open Mondays 2pm-5:30pm in the Stillwater Medical Center Parking Lot and Saturdays 8am-1pm in the Pioneer Square parking lot at the corner of Hall of Fame and Perkins Road.
PLANT YOUR GARDEN!
Fall is the time to plant mums, asters, and pansies in containers as well as to plant bulbs for the spring.
TOUR A GARDEN.
The Payne County Master Gardeners and The Botanic Garden Ambassadors are sponsoring the First Annual Payne County Garden Tour on Sunday, Oct. 2 from 12:30-4pm. Be inspired by unusual plant specimens, hardscaping ideas, and wildlife habitats.
Yoga in the Garden is offered at The Botanic Garden at OSU on Thursdays at 5:45 pm.
PARTICIPATE IN A SEED OR BULB EXCHANGE.
The Botanic Garden at OSU will offer a seed exchange and potluck on Oct. 11 at 6pm. Bring your favorite flower and vegetable seeds to swap with fellow gardeners and a dish for the Tuesday Gardening Series fall potluck dinner.
Cory Suddarth will present “Birding Optics” at the Botanic Garden at OSU on Oct. 6, 7pm. Suddarth will discuss binoculars, scopes, and everything in between. He is an expert in the repair of old optics so be sure to have them with you when he takes questions.
FUN RUN/WALK FOR CHARITY.
There are several great chances to walk or run for your favorite cause this fall. Here are the events we know about. There may be more, so be sure to do your research.
The 29th annual Juke Joint Jog takes place on Oct. 15 and benefits Stillwater Area United Way.
Color of Hope 5k Run/Walk takes place on Oct. 22 at Boomer Lake and benefits Stillwater Life Services.
The Cowboy Strong Run takes place on Oct. 22 on the OSU-Stillwater Campus and benefits the Cowboy Strong Student Emergency Need Fund.
The Blue Streak takes place on Nov. 5 at the Meridian Technology Center Campus.
The 7th Annual Putts for Pets four-man scramble tournament and silent auction will be on Oct. 22 at the Stillwater Country Club. The event benefits the Stillwater Humane Society.
ATTEND A FESTIVAL OR CRAFT SHOW.
Stillwater’s 26th Annual Halloween Festival will be held in Downtown Stillwater on Oct. 25, 5pm-8pm. Admission is one nonperishable food item for Harvest II.
GO TO A RODEO!
The OSU Rodeo Team and the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources at OSU are holding the third annual Cowboy Stampede Rodeo Oct. 20-22. Performances take place each evening at 7pm at the Payne County Fairgrounds.
FOOTBALL AND TAILGATING.
We would argue that some of the best tailgating in the nation can be had right here in Stillwater. This October and November, OSU will have four more home football games. If you don’t enjoy tailgating in Stillwater, you might be doing it wrong!
America’s Greatest Homecoming kicks off with events all through the week of Oct. 24-29. The week culminates with Walkaround on Friday night, the Sea of Orange parade and the homecoming football game on Saturday. With events like these, OSU Homecoming is one of if not the greatest Stillwater tradition. Don’t miss it!
Traditional Trick-or-Treating will be held on Monday, Oct. 31. Many area churches offer trunk-or-treating events featuring games and other activities to provide a safe trick-or-treating experience for families.
Whether you are able to experience one or many of these adventures, make sure to share it with the people you love and be mindfully present as you make memories this year.
For details about these and other great activities in and around Stillwater, be sure to visit www.visitstillwater.org/events.