It’s Not Fall Here Without ‘Em!

By |Published On: November 7, 2023|
Photo: MattFern/

All across the country, people are celebrating the return of fall.

Cozy blankets are being pulled out of closets. Pumpkin spice lattes shove all other caffeinated beverages aside as they saunter into the room to reclaim their seasonal throne. We’re starting to make plans (or planning to start making plans!) to wrangle the chaos of the soon-approaching holiday season.

But some of the things our team loves most about this season can only be experienced here in the State College area.

Here’s a list of the things we think make fall especially wonderful and look forward to each year!

Regina says:

“One of my favorite fall events in State College is the PSU homecoming parade. It brings back memories of going as a kid, sitting on College Ave with cups of hot chocolate from Ye Olde College diner. The PSU marching band at the end of the parade is my favorite—it gets me every time! We moved back when my kids were 4 and 2, and they’ve loved the tradition too (especially catching candy!). This year they are both teens. We all went downtown together, but they split off with friends and did their own thing. My boyfriend and I watched the parade for a while, but then decided to duck into Antifragile for a fall margarita… maybe my new favorite tradition!”

Pictured: The State High Marching Band in the Penn State Homecoming parade. Photo: Chris Taschner

Maggie says:

Apples! The local honeycrisps always signal fall for me, even though they start right at the end of August when we’re still having gorgeous (hot!) weather. My perfect fall farmers market haul is honeycrisps, soft pretzels from Gemelli Bakers, some local cheese, and perhaps even some fresh squeezed cider (or hard cider, for that matter!). We still have so much beautiful produce through much of autumn, and it’s fun to stock up and find ways to cook, freeze or can the last gasps of the harvest.”

Matt says:

“The Wasson Farm Fall Fest is a great fall event. It’s huge, so you can spend a lot of time there and not get bored. There are wagon rides to/from the pumpkin patch to pick your own pumpkins, food, drink, and craft vendors, entertainment, indoor and outdoor attractions, a huge hay bale structure for kids to play in/on, free admission, and tons of ‘grammable photo ops!”

Photo: MattFern/

Katie says:

“I love the fall foliage hiking around the area, specifically Black Moshannonis incredible. I also love visiting Chumley’s and seeing their decor and new seasonal drink options!”

Pictured: There’s always plenty of spooky ambiance to be enjoyed at Chumley’s!

Brad says:

“I have three favorites. First, it’s not fall without the colorful leaves! The colors are shockingly beautiful. I look forward to the change every year. Second, pumpkin picking in a real pumpkin patch. It’s quickly becoming a family tradition and something I never did until I moved here. It’s so fun to ride out on a tractor, see the huge variety of colors, shapes and sizes and find ‘the one.’ And PSU football is a spectacular fall tradition in State College. Tailgate food, fresh air and Penn State wins make the town electric.”

John says:

“Echoing the leaf change! There’s nothing that makes the 4 hour drive to visit family more bearable than the most beautiful drive in central PA to see all of my favorite colors on the trees!

And my absolute favorite part of this season is HALLOWEEN! There’s nothing I love more than people dressing up in the most detailed or clever costumes. (Not to mention getting to see places like Chumley’s get into the holiday spirit!)

Laura says:

“The Pumpkin Festival at the Arboretum is the best! The jack-o’-lantern contest display is huge and there are always so many creative designs. Go after dark to enjoy them all lit up! It also wouldn’t be fall in State College without indulging in a pumpkin roll from Way Fruit Farm or hiking through Musser Gap or Shingletown as all of the leaves are changing.”

We hope you’ve been able to check a few of these seasonal favorites off of your “State College Fall To Do List” this year, but if not? Mark your calendars and be sure to join us next year!

Laura Mustio made her way to State College via Pittsburgh in 2015. Her writing celebrates our area’s hidden gems, treasured locals, and not-to-be-missed experiences.

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