I absolutely love autumn here in North Dakota. When the hot, humid days of summer mellow into the cooler days of fall, it’s great to get outdoors and soak up the beauty of the season.
I’m also a strong advocate for giving our residents every possible opportunity to get outside and enjoy the wonders of nature. Over the next year, I plan to feature ideas for outdoor activities that can be done during each of the four seasons.
Let’s get started with 25 activities for autumn:
- Borrow a portable fire pit. Residents can enjoy smores and toasted marshmallows.
- Go on a drive to look at the beautiful fall leaves. Stop and take group pictures along the way, then post them at the nursing home.
- Ask residents to help decorate the front entrance of the nursing home with a fall theme.
- Go for a walk in a park. For even more fun, bring along a metal detector and see what treasures you find.
- Make a scarecrow and stuff it with fall leaves. Residents can help, or they’ll enjoy supervising and offering suggestions.
- Invite a guest speaker to do an outdoor craft class or demonstration.
- Hold an exercise class outside or assist residents to do their rehab programs outdoors.
- Ask residents to help you collect pine cones or acorns. Use them for fall craft projects.
- Sit outside and watch the geese flying south for the winter.
- Take a trip to a farmer’s market and pick up mini pumpkins or gourds to use for craft projects.
- Host an outdoor picnic. Encourage residents to plan the menu.
- Make bird feeders, then sit outside and watch the birds arrive.
- Ask residents to help you collect colored leaves, then use them for a fall art project.
- Plant bulbs in the garden for lovely flowers in the spring.
- Ask a farmer to donate sunflower heads, then have the residents pick out the seeds. If you do this outdoors, it doesn’t matter if you make a mess. Put the seeds in your bird feeders.
- Now that school is back in session, take a trip to watch a school sporting event or practice.
- Sit outside and sample several varieties of hot chocolate or hot apple cider.
- Take a trip to a pumpkin patch and encourage each resident to pick out their own pumpkin to decorate.
- Go for a neighborhood walk and talk about the sights, sounds, and scents of autumn.
- Ask residents to help rake leaves.
- Invite residents outside to help with or supervise fall clean-up in the facility garden. Brainstorm about what to plant next spring.
- Set up games on the lawn: horseshoes, bean bag toss, lawn bowling, ring toss, etc.
- Go on an old-fashioned hayride.
- Visit an orchard and pick apples.
- Sit outside and read books with an autumn theme or do fall-themed trivia games.
I know you have lots of great ideas for outdoor fall activities, too. Please share them in the comment section!