North Iowa fall fun

BY: RACHEL WUMKES

Today marks the autumnal equinox – also called the September equinox or fall equinox.  This means it is the official start of the fall season in the Northern Hemisphere and spring in the Southern Hemisphere.

All very technical, right?

To me, the start of fall means a slew of things.  First, it’s the start of SWEATER WEATHER!  And girls, we all know there is nothing better than slipping on a fresh pair of black yoga pants with an oversized sweater to enjoy a crisp fall day.

It makes that ‘pop’ of a wine cork at the end of a busy day sound like music from the Heavens.

‘Tis also the season of all things pumpkin spice and apple flavors.  Whatever the reason, fall tends to top the charts on many people list as their favorite season.  Whether you call it autumn or fall, it’s the time of year where the sweat dries up and humidity takes the outbound train until next year.

Soon (and yes, I’m counting the days) we will have the first frost.  Now, many people may scrunch their nose at this because it means winter is on the way.  Me?  I celebrate.  Because frost means those tiny little black bugs descend back to the depths of Hell where they belong.

Am I right?

Fall fun packs a punch of awesomeness in North Iowa.

Our Chamber Members have a wide variety of activities planned for all ages to enjoy.

  • Enchanted Acres: Opening for the season on September 24th, they have all the fall fun! Located in Sheffield, they’re just a hop, skip and a jump away via I-35 and SO worth the drive. You can check out their full schedule of events for the season at  http://enchantedacresia.com/
  • Clear Lake Fall Style Show: A collaboration between Grace & Strength Boutique, Busigirl Fitness, White Barn Picket Fence and The Funky Zebras. Tickets are only $10 – or you can snag a high-top table for 2 for $35!  The fall fashion fun will be held at the Clear Lake Arts Center on September 29th from 7:00 – 8:30PM.
  • The Nightmare – Haunted Hike: Officially opens for the season on Saturday, October 1st.  You can get your scare on every weekend from then until Halloween.  Located at 2532 South Shore Drive, their motto is “If you dare, we will scare.”
  • Clear Lake Farmer’s Market: Don’t miss out on all the BEST from gardening season!!  The final market of the season is October 15th so be sure to stop by and check out all the goodies.
  • Harvest Festival: It’s the Chamber’s premier fall event and it’s the ULTIMATE girls’ day out!  The fun kicks off on October 1st with a Champagne 5K.  The vendor market runs from 9am – 4pm along with live music, wine tasting, craft beer tasting, salsa contest and the ever-popular grape stomp competition.
  • CLFD Pancake Breakfast: In celebration of Fire Prevention Month, you can indulge in delicious pancakes and sausages, all smothered with yummy syrup on October 2nd!
  • Plain Ol’ Pumpkins: Located at 4333 260th Street in Clear Lake, they are a mecca for old fashioned fun!  You can find out more about them at https://www.plainolpumpkins.com/ Head on out for a full day of all your favorite fall things… corn maze, apple launcher, giant slide, a game of wagon ball and so much more!
  • The Clear Lake Library is your one-stop shop for all sorts of fall fun. They are more than just a place to check out books.  They provide informational, educational cultural, recreational and technological services. The library strives to be a welcoming community center for all seeking personal and professional growth and development.
  • The Clear Lake Arts Center is a dynamic and vibrant hub to promote and preserve creativity. They have SO many activities scheduled for this fall, including a beginning to intermediate class on oil paintings! Check out their full schedule of exhibits and events at https://clearlakeartscenter.org/
  • Pumpkin Palooza: This BRAND NEW event is a collaboration between the Clear Lake Library, the Clear Lake Arts Center, and Central Gardens!  The event will be held on October 15th starting at 4:00pm.  Come out to celebrate “all things pumpkin” with decorating, kid & adult activities, a photo booth, food trucks, apple cider, popcorn and MORE until 6PM.  Then, be sure to stay for the LIGHTED PUMPKIN PARADE through Central Gardens from 6-7pm.
Whew, that’s a lot of fall fun, my friends.

Be sure to get out to as many as these events and celebrate this beautiful season of harvest in North Iowa.

Before long, it will be time to start putting together those holiday shopping lists!!  Keep your eyes peeled on the Clear Lake Chamber Facebook page as our happy elves highlight ALL the best gifts for the 2023 season in your favorite LOCAL stores!