Dealing with Summer’s End

Dealing with Summer’s End

pumpkin patch niagara

Eight Great Ways to Deal With the End of Summer:

Waaaaaah! Summer’s over!
Quit yer whining, kid. There’s loads to do in Niagara during the fall.

1. Get your bike out and hit some of the spectacular cycling trails. Bring the kiddies too! The Welland Canal trail runs for miles and miles and every inch of it is tucked safely away from traffic. You can let the little ones race away ahead of you without worry.

2. Lace up your runners and go for a walk on the world-famous Bruce Trail. Hikers come from all over the world to explore this UNESCO World Biosphere – and there’s 520 miles of it. Start walking now and be sure to drop us a line at Christmas – you’ll be in Tobermory by then.

3. Climb down into the Niagara Gorge (use the stairway in the park across from the Niagara Horticultural Centre) and find yourself a big flat rock in the sun. The rapids are right there and the scenery’s spectacular with the leaves changing colour – it’s a great place for a picnic.

4. Remember the story of the ant and the grasshopper? The grasshopper fiddled his time away while the sun shone. The ant, on the other hand, industriously packed away food for the winter so he wouldn’t be hungry when the snow came. Get yourself to a fruit stand now and buy a whole bunch of cucumbers or fruit – Niagara has the best produce in the world. Then get some jars and learn how to make pickles and jam. Grasshoppers – don’t count on your ant friends to take care of you. If you fall down from hunger in November, they’ll just pick you up and carry you off to feed to their queen. Ants are like that.

5. Buy everyone cool handmade Christmas gifts at the Hernder Estates Craft Show, November 7-9th. In December, when everyone else is freaking out about the size of their shopping lists, you can sneer a bit and feel pretty smug.

6. Check out the funky, animated pumpkin sculptures at the Howell Family Pumpkin Farm on Holland Road – who knew you could make a roaring dinosaur from pumpkins? The kids will love running around in the corn maze and taking a hay ride and you can see all kinds of pumpkin carving ideas that will make you feel very inferior about the basic jack-o-lantern faces you’ve been using all these years.

7. Drink wine. You can do it any time of year, of course, but if you’re feeling sad about the end of summer, then get yourself to one of the more than 200 (!!) wineries in Niagara and drown your sorrows in a tasting. You can even do a tour of the vineyards and learn something about winemaking while you’re at it.

8. Catch a show at the Shaw Festival. For the month of October, the Niagara Neighbours special is on – so for $39/seat, you can see all those shows you’ve been pretending you’ve already seen when you talk to your cultured friends. Check it out – it’s the best deal going.

Is a travel writer with weekly columns in the Toronto Star, various other newspapers and She's a thrilled to be a blog contributor, and is inspired by the people she's met through White Oaks.