It’s time to excavate your favorite sweaters from the depths of your closet, unearth your scarf collection and put your pea coat on a prominent peg, because fall has arrived!
If you want to take part in the best of the season’s festivities, look no further than Suncadia Resort. This getaway in the Cascade Mountains is less than a two-hour drive from Seattle and the annual Harvest Festival is perfect for those who appreciate the bounteous beauty of the fall season. Plan a trip the first or second weekend in October to enjoy these festival highlights.
1. Farm fun
Head to Historic Nelson Farm with the family to enjoy a picturesque fall day outdoors. Take a ride on a pony or hay wagon, wander through a hay maze, try to scale a hay pyramid or peruse the pumpkin patch and pick the perfect pumpkin for your Halloween Jack-o’-lantern.
There will also be a merchant market featuring crafts from local artisans as well as a food truck and a beer garden in case you need some nourishment.
2. Harvest Apple Hop
The first day of the festival, October 7, is also the date of the Harvest Apple Hop. Please your palate by tasting beers and ciders from around the Pacific Northwest while you enjoy live music. You can also chat up the beer and cider makers to learn tricks of the trade and cultivate a greater appreciation for the subtle variations in beverages. Or just sample a lot of drinks and indulge in signature Suncadia Bites – your choice.
3. Gathering Over Grapes
If you prefer wine to beer, there’s an event for you, too – snag a ticket to Gathering Over Grapes on October 14 to sample wines from around the Pacific Northwest. Let the live music serenade your ears while the vintages tantalize your taste buds.
Talk to the vintners about their grapes, growing processes, blending strategies and bottling techniques while enjoying the [literal] fruits of their labors. If you get hungry, there will be plenty of signature Suncadia bites up for grabs.
4. Pee Wee Rodeo
Bring your kids to the Pee Wee Rodeo on any of the festival days between 1:30 and 3 pm for a rootin’ tootin’ good time! They’ll have an opportunity to try their hand at hog typing, bull riding, barrel racing and lasso throwing with guidance from real cowboys.
5. Big Dirty Run
If you didn’t’ get messy enough with the hog tying, the Big Dirty Run will definitely do the trick. This 5K race is for those who don’t mind getting a little dirty. Run, walk, crawl and climb your way through a 5K obstacle course that winds through the muddy trails of Nelson Preserve. This year will feature fun new obstacles to challenge and delight racers.
Adults who cross the finish line win a glass of beer, and kids who finish the race win a glass of root beer. If you and your family like spending time outdoors and getting a little messy, the Big Dirty Run is a great no-pressure race that promises fun for all.
6. Nearby adventures
If you find yourself at Suncadia after the Harvest Festival is over, you’ll still find plenty to do in surrounding Kittitas County. The nearby towns of Cle Elum, Roslyn and South Cle Elum offer parks to adventure in, museums to explore and several fun events scheduled throughout October.
For those of us who live for sweater weather, attending Suncadia’s Harvest Festival is a stellar way to celebrate the arrival of the fall season. Beyond that, the resort’s expansive vistas of the Cascade Mountains are never more beautiful than when they’re tinged in brilliant autumn hues.