Summer 2022 is coming to an end. I’m not too sad about it, because that means that we are right on the cusp of my favorite time of the year, fall! I’m ready to break out the flannels and fall decor. I don’t even care if it’s 85 degrees, I am totally lighting up my pumpkin spice candles on September 1st. I’m ready for football games and crockpot comfort meals. Fall in Cedar Rapids (and Iowa in general) is beautiful, so I’ve compiled a list of suggestions for enjoying everything that Cedar Rapids has to offer this season.
Check out the Fall Festival at Bass Family Farms
Of course, a pumpkin patch has to be the first thing on my list, and Bass Family Farms has so much more to offer than just pumpkins! Their fall festival opening weekend is September 10th and 11th and they have a huge list of activities for the festival. Your family will love the hay rides, 18-hole mini golf, GIANT jump pad, corn maze, and of course picking out the perfect pumpkins. I got mums for my front porch from here last year and they were huge and I got tons of compliments! Be sure to stop in the store for some of their delicious ice cream (Seriously, you can thank me for this suggestion later!). Admission to the festival is $10 per person and kids 2 and under are free!
Go Apple Picking
There is nothing that says fall to me more than the smell of baking a fresh apple pie or some apple turnovers. Take your kids to let them help you pick out the perfect apples for your fall baking at one of the awesome apple orchards in the area. I recommend Allen’s Orchard in Marion, The “Big” Apple Orchard in Mt. Vernon, or Wilson’s Orchard in Iowa City. If you happen to stop by Wilson’s Orchard, make sure to try an apple cider donut – you’re going to want to take some home!
Take a Bike Ride
One thing my family really loves about Cedar Rapids is that there are so many nice bike trails in our area. Fall is the perfect time to explore them because the weather is perfect this time of the year. Bonus – this is a great way to see the fall foliage. I recommend hopping on the Cedar Valley Nature Trail in Hiawatha. There’s a small parking area and you can get right onto the trail from it.
Make Raking Leaves Fun
Cedar Rapids has a loose-leaf collection for its residents from October 3 to December 9th. They have more instructions on their website but basically, you pile your leaves along the curb during certain dates. Take advantage of this city service by making the chore a fun activity for your family. You can make some great memories by jumping into the piles of leaves with your kids, or do a DIY photo shoot by having someone throw the leaves up in front of the camera and using the “burst” feature on your phone to take a series of really cool pictures. You can find the leaf collection calendar and more instructions at CityofCR.com/Leaf
Explore Ushers Ferry Historic Village
Ushers Ferry is open from September to October from 1:30 to 4:30 and it is super affordable at only $3.50 for adults and $2.00 for children. The historic village is in Seminole Valley and is 10 acres! Explore what life was like in small-town Iowa between the years of 1890 and 1910. They are having some special events this fall that sound really fun, like the Harvest Hayrack nights where you can take a hayride through the valley and enjoy a bonfire. Ushers Ferry is also hosting a Safe Halloween for kids on Sunday, October 23rd, and it’s free!
Check out Old Macdonald’s Farm in Bever Park
Bever park is over 100 years old and has a free petting farm that is open to the public. My son loved seeing the goats when we went there and playing in their corn pit. On September 24th they are having a special fall “county fair.” They will be having hayrack rides, booths, scavenger hunts, and pie contests! The park is operated by Cedar Rapids Parks and Rec and they recommend a $1.00 donation at the door for the fair. Another fun fall activity would be to sign your child up for an activity like “Farmer for a Day” hosted by the Parks and Rec department at Old MacDonald’s Farm. You can find their fall program guide here.
Make sure you never miss out on a parenting or community-related blog post: sign up to receive Cedar Rapids Moms posts in your inbox. While you’re at it, join our VIP List to ensure you’re one of the first to know about upcoming Cedar Rapids Moms events and promotions!!