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Fun Outdoor Activities To Do This Fall

As I declared my remote status for the fall semester, I could feel my social life slipping through my fingers. I reminisced about all the city trips, dining hall dates and pizza runs that COVID-19 has taken away from me like a rug from under my feet. I realized the closest I’ll get to a city trip or hanging out with my friends this year is by watching Gossip Girl reruns on Netflix Party.

However, I’m trying to be positive about the upcoming semester. It’s pretty obvious that we won’t be able to do much inside as crowded indoor areas are where the virus is spread. So, I decided to come up with a list of fun activities you can do outside this fall! Although we won’t be enjoying the flash of New York City for a few months, I’ve found that there are a few fun outings that can be done while we’re stuck in our hometowns.

1. Apple Picking

Apple picking can be done mid-September through October. It’s always a ton of fun if you’re with the right people, and a lot of farms have apple cider donuts or other treats that will get you in the spirit of autumn. All in all, you get to have fun and bring home at least a week’s worth of snacks. You could create more fun for yourself by using your apples to make apple cider, apple pie, or apple crisp. But if you’re like me, you’ll probably just pair them with some peanut butter and snack on it between classes.

2. Hiking

Hiking is a great way to get some exercise, connect with nature and hang out with friends! If you have a trail near you, put on your workout clothes and a mask and get some miles in. Be sure to bring a water bottle– sharing with your friend is not a good idea right now.

3. Bonfire

Bonfires are another typical summer activity, but it doesn’t matter if it’s cold– the fire will warm you up! The safest way to do this is to have everyone sit six feet away from each other and wear masks. You can make s’mores, drink hot cider, and watch the sunset around the fire together.

4. Beach

Who says the beach is only for the summer? Beaches are considered public parks, and typically the only expense is parking. You can go for a morning run, watch the sunset or sunrise, or have a picnic (if the weather permits). You could always just go to get some Instagram pictures– I wouldn’t judge!

5. Paint and Sip

This is something I’ve already planned with my friend! A lot of people pay to go to paint and sip classes, but it’s safer and cheaper to do it at home for now. Paint and Sip is fun and easy– you don’t have to be Picasso to have fun with it. You also don’t have to be 21– you can drink whatever you want to! Here are some ideas for mocktails since a lot of college students like myself are underage. This activity can be done with friends in a backyard or over FaceTime. 

6. Pumpkin Picking

Another fan favorite! This might feel a little childish, but let’s face it– pumpkin picking is one of the best fall activities. Grab a mask and go with a group of friends and see who can find the best pumpkin. You can  make a day out of it and have a jack-o-lantern carving party in your backyard. Just because there won’t be costume parties this year doesn’t mean that Halloween has to be boring!

7. Outdoor Movies

There are two different ways of doing this one. Some areas have drive-in movies to make up for movie theaters being closed. Another way of going about it is by buying a large white sheet and a projector and watching movies right in your backyard! You can do this in the fall if you throw on your coziest sweatpants and grab a blanket. I guarantee all of your friends would love you for suggesting this one.

I hope you like these suggestions! Let me know if you try any out via Instagram @jilleenbarrett or email jbarrett02@manhattan.edu.



Jilleen Barrett is a communication major with a minor in women's studies at Manhattan College. She is a member of various clubs, such as the school newspaper and Sigma Delta Tau. She loves running, baking, and going on bike rides around her neighborhood on Long Island. She is excited to be writing for HerCampus!
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