This coming weekend looks to be beautiful. While not, summery per se, Saturday and Sunday will be sunny and pleasant, and the fall color will be peaking in this area of the state. This would be a great time to take a break from the books and go for a hike or a bike ride across campus or in one of our many local city and state parks.
We are looking at rapidly cooling and shortening days, but fall in Allendale is so enjoyable it is easy to forget. If physical exercise isn’t your thing, Michigan’s foodshed is particularly abundant in autumn, and many farms and orchards, as well as farmer’s markets, are open to visit. This year is stupendous for apples, and now is the time to sample their many varieties, carameled or not, as well as apple pie, apple crisp, apple cider, and applejack. The last, an 80-proof apple product, is newly available locally by Coppercraft Distillery in Holland. If you are a GVSU history major, this is a piece of Americana you may want to experience personally, to give you a feeling for our forefathers’ beverage tastes. Ahem.
If apples aren’t your favorite fruit, take a tour of Michigan’s vineyards and sample some Michigan wine - or beer. Grand Rapids, now well known for its craft breweries, has been named Beer City, USA twice now, in 2012 and 2013.
Break out a map and go for a color tour. The West Michigan Tourist Association has 26 different tours listed for taking in the best color. The closest one to GVSU routes drivers from Grand Haven to Grandville, but the rest of West Michigan has plenty of trees putting on a brilliant show. While you’re out, stop at a farm stand and pick up a pumpkin. You’re not too old to carve one, and creating a jack-o’-lantern is an excellent way to distract yourself from the stress of mid-terms.
Corn mazes, hayrides, haunted houses, and Halloween costume shopping are more great things to do this time of year. In fact, just about all of Michigan’s summer venues are still open for use and far less crowded this time of year. Play a round of golf. Throw on a wool sweater or an overcoat and visit the beach at Grand Haven, or pack warmly and take a fall camping trip at any number of Michigan campgrounds.
Winter is coming, but before it gets here, there’s plenty to see and do. It would be a shame if you missed out on this fall season. It’s one of the best reasons to live here in Allendale, Michigan - besides the learning, of course.