Get (Safely!) Out and About in Westchester & the Hudson Valley this Fall
Your family could really use a fun outing, but you're committed to social distancing. Many popular nature trails and lake beaches seem like a good idea until you realize that many others had the same idea, making some of these destinations too crowded for comfort.. Luckily, there are new and interesting places to explore while staying a safe distance for others. If you can, switch your schedule and do your outings on weekdays to avoid weekend crowds. KIdOutAndAbout offers a few suggestions you may not have considered, and all of them are around Westchester and the Hudson Valley.
Note: Looking at the two different lists may be slightly different, but you'll see a bunch of overlap in the lists.
Have fun on a farm
Fall means harvest season, and it brings out the best in our area farms. It's a wonderful, low-cost way to get outside in the fresh air, and get active with your families.
Each farm is different -- it brings its own flavor to the experience. Browse our lists of local farms that offer fall activities, and see which new ones you want to try this season!
Visit a garden!
A garden or arboretum is a special change of pace from your usual walk in nature. You'll find careful design, information about plants and how they grow, and a bit more "formal" atmosphere, but there's usually still plenty of space to explore. Visit again and again to notice the change of seasons, bring along a blanket and a book, or pack a picnic if it's allowed. At Lasdon Park and Arboretum in Katonah, NY, buildings and restrooms are close, but trails and gardens are opening. Review a map or use your smart phone for more information as you wander the trails. The grounds at Barlett Arboretum, in Stamford, CT, are open from dawn until dusk, every day. They've got 12 gardens, and you can download a trail map to plan your visit.
Pick Your Own Apples
One great way to get your kids to eat more fruit -- and introduce them to the subtleties of sweet/tangy tastes -- is by taking them apple picking to a local orchard. Check out places to spend a day in the orchard all around our area.
Visit a Sculpture Park
Sculpture parks offer the opportunity to take in some sculpture while enjoying outdoor space. You can enhance your experience by bringing along sketchbooks or cameras to see how the sculptures can inspire your own compositions. The sprawling grounds allows kids to be a bit more relaxed than in a typical museum, and best of all, it's easy to keep a distance from others. Opus 40 is open from Thursday through Sunday, from 11 am to 5 pm, but you need to plan ahead and reserve a time to visit. Unison’s sculpture garden will be open to the public beginning Friday, June 19. There are no bathrooms available and the parking lot fits only up to 15 cars, and some of wooden areas of the garden are narrow, so don’t forget your masks and distancing
Corn mazes can be easy or hard, and some are even offered at night! Which farms have corn mazes? Here's a quick way to find them in our area.
Drive In for a Movie
Many drive-in movie theaters have opened for summer, and our colleague Helena Robin thinks you should definitely take your kids to a drive-in movie theater. We'll be honest: it's much easier to find a big, sprawling drive-in movie theater as you drive up north, farther from NYC and high property values. But it's worth a trip to enoy a piece of Americana, right? Be sure to check their websites to review COVID-19 procedures before you go.
Buy your fall pumpkins at a boring old grocery store? Not when you can head to a farm or roadside stand and pick the perfect pumpkin for a less money and more fun! Here is KidsOutAndAbout's list of places to pick pumpkins in our area.