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Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Fall Bucket List

Categories: Family Fun, General, Outdoors, Wine & Culinary

check list

Playing Sink the Biz at Nick's, seeing a show at The Bluebird, visiting the Farmers Market; there are certain things you just can't miss in Bloomington. The same goes for fall in Bloomington. To help you enjoy one of the busiest seasons in town, we've created this bucket list of things every Bloomingtonian and visitor should experience in autumn.  

Visit Musgrave Orchards

musgrave apples

After a few months of sweltering summer heat, we're ready to welcome the crisp autumn air that is coming our way (hopefully soon). As the season changes to fall, it's time to celebrate all of the seasonal goodies we love at this time of year. A trip to Musgrave Orchard is a fall must. Stock up on hand pressed apple cider and homemade caramel apples. You can also buy a variety of apples by the basket, local honey, soaps, and more. Don't forget to bring cash. 

Climb the Hickory Ridge Fire Tower

firetower fall

The view from the fire tower is epic at any time of year but in the fall you can see the swath of gorgeous fall colors throughout the Hoosier National Forest. Don't forget to bring your camera and maybe your Fit Bit so you can track your steps. Learn more.

RELATed content: Hard to Find Hikes in the Hoosier Nation

Pick a pumpkin at Oliver Winery


If you're looking for the perfect pumpkin for your porch, head to Oliver Winery. Every fall they stock their garden with gourds of all shapes, sizes, and colors so take a lap or two around the grounds to find the one for you. After you find your pumpkin, head into the tasting room and get a taste of their latest fall creation, apple pie wine. Make a day of it and pre-order a picnic and enjoy it on their porch. Learn more.

Explore Fowler Pumpkin Patch

fowler pumpkin patch

If you're looking for a family-friendly pumpkin patch filled with activities to keep your little ones entertained for an afternoon, head to the Fowler Pumpkin Patch. They have thousands of pumpkins just waiting to be picked out. Small ones, BIG ones, green ones, white ones, the list goes on and on. Once you've picked your pumpkins you can go on a hayride, explore the corn maze, or say hello to the goats and donkeys in their petting zoo. Opening day is September 23! 

Sample Fall Flavors

farmers market bloomington

With Bloomington's incredibly creative culinary scene there should be no surprise that fall is a great time to eat in Bloomington. The Farmers' Market is bursting with seasonal foods like apples, pumpkins, and pies of all sorts. From apple cider donuts to persimmon ale and more, check out our Fall Flavors blog post for more can't miss foods around town this fall. 

Related content: Fall Flavors in Bloomington

Pack a Picnic

The humidity is waning making it much more pleasant to enjoy a picnic outside. Gourmet snacks and other goodies can be found at Goods for Cooks or swing by Bloomingfoods and pick up some sandwiches from their deli. Once you have all of your picnic supplies there are quite a few parks to choose from. Some of our favorite parks include:

Attend Indiana University Homecoming Weekend

Copy of homecoming

On October 12-13, celebrate all things Cream & Crimson on IU's Homecoming Weekend. Friday's Homecoming events include spirit stations stocked with free IU swag, Classes Without Quizzes with Jeremy Gray of IU Athletics, and the Homecoming parade and pep rally down Woodlawn Avenue. Saturday starts early with the Homecoming Huddle, a special IUAA members-only tailgate*, to get us ready to cheer on our Hoosiers as they take on the Michigan Wolverines at noon. If you're a visiting fan, check out our guide to Gameday Weekend Guide for out of towners.

Related content: Gameday Weekend Guide

Ride the Hilly Hundred

hilly hundred

Challenge yourself and enjoy the beauty of the Indiana Uplands with two days of cycling. On October 6-8, 5,000 cyclists from over 40 states and several countries come to Bloomington to ride the hills. The challenging terrain is a wonderful mix of gently rolling country roads and breathtaking hills. Free food and live entertainment at each of three rest stops on both Saturday and Sunday. Learn more. If you can't make the Hilly Hundred this year, rent a bike and cruise some of the trails your own.  

Related Content: Bicycling in Bloomington


Leaf Peeping on Arts Road 46


A post shared by Mannation (@thisismannation) on


Arts Road 46 is a beautifully winding road that connects Bloomington to Brown County and Columbus, Indiana. As you can imagine in the fall the trees are beaming in different fall colors making it the perfect time to take a drive. There is so much to see and do in all of the Arts Road 46 communities make sure you follow Arts Road 46 on Facebook to be in the know. 

What did we miss? Let us know in the comments.

Emily Hines

Emily Hines

Emily Hines is a Bloomington transplant by way of St. Simons Island, Georgia and was previously the digital content Coordinator for Visit Bloomington. When she's not blogging or grammin' you can find her hiking in the Hoosier National Forest with her husband and two black labs or enjoying a craft beer and slice of pizza in town.