Welcome to the October installment of our year-long essay series that explores topics to help us all experience a more mindful, present, and connected life. This month, the collective Community Life Team shares their fall inspiration.
We’re downright giddy about the arrival of fall. There’s a certain energy and excitement this time of year. Perhaps it’s the anticipation of Halloween, Thanksgiving, and the winter holidays just beyond.
Or, maybe it’s the promise that cooler temperatures are almost here, and cozy scarves, boots, and sweaters can finally make a fashionable appearance. Even the desert landscape seems to sigh in relief as plants and trees take on a renewed vibrancy.
The list could go on and on, but we thought we’d share our favorite reasons we celebrate fall in Arizona.
Road trips and hiking trails to see fall foliage
Just a few short hours north of Phoenix is a wonderland of autumn colors. Lockett Meadow, in the Coconino National Forest, has hiking and camping trails to immerse yourself in a stunning landscape of golden Aspen trees.
The start of football season
Whether it’s rooting for the Cardinals or our favorite hometown team, fall means football for many of the guys and gals on the Community Life Team. And don’t forget, high school football is also in full swing. Round up the family to cheer on the Queen Creek Bulldogs at a Friday night game this fall!
Between October and April, festivals pop up all over town. Hands down, the best fall festival is in our own backyard at Schnepf Farm’s Pumpkin & Chili Party that runs for five weekends beginning Oct. 1. (Psst! Save April 9 on your calendar for Eastmark’s second annual AwesomeFest!)
The scents and flavors of fall
Nothing beats the warm aroma of hearty soup simmering on the stove or a pumpkin pie baking in the oven. Fall is our favorite time of year to spend time in the kitchen experimenting with new recipes. Here’s a few to try: Corn Chowder, Vegetarian Black Bean Chili, Caramel Apple Trifles, Pumpkin Cheesecake.
Put those pumpkin seeds from your jack-o-lanterns to good use and roast them in the over for a crunchy fall treat. Here’s how:
Rinse and soak seeds in cold water overnight. Take a cookie sheet and spread seeds evenly and spoon a few tablespoons of butter or olive oil on top. Sprinkle with salt and bake in the oven at 350 degrees. Add additional butter or oil if they appear to be drying out. Stir occasionally. Once golden brown, take out of oven and store in a tight container.
What do you enjoy most about fall? We look forward to learning more about what inspires you this time of year at one of our many upcoming events and activities!
Other articles in this series:
January: Welcome to a Bright New Year
February: Passion & Possibility
March: Curiosity & Creativity
April: Turn Your Passion into Action
May: Words of Wisdom
June: Always There
July: Pass the Ketchup, Please
August: The Moment of Truth
September: Being an Adult is Overrated
October: Why we Fall in Love with Autumn in Arizona
November: Practicing Gratitude
December: ‘Tis the Season for Magic
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