When the leaves dance in the wind and begin falling and that cold rush of air blows through we know that that autumn is making its grand entrance and every year we look forward to gathering up a bunch of people and celebrating with a Harvest Party at our home!
This day is special because it is fall themed---everything from the food, to the music, and the games. I am going to share what we do here so in case you are interested in doing something like this you will have some inspiration to go by.
This year we did it with our church family and had a worship service outdoors beforehand. It was lovely to celebrate with God's people and worshiping the Creator to jumpstart the day.
We plan in advance and decorate the house and outdoors with a fall theme. We decorate with pumpkins, gourds, scarecrows, candles, haybales, mums, cornstalks, and the like.
We ask people to bring to the potluck a fall dish, a fall side or fall dessert and a gallon of apple cider. We also like to serve cocoa and marshmallows as well. I usually try to make a crockpot chili and cornbread. People brought all kinds of amazing soups, and fall dishes galore. It was soooooo deliciously good. For dessert we had pumpkin pies, pecan pies, apple cobbler, taffy apples, popcorn balls, pumpkin rolls, etc.
We also told people that they were welcome to dress up in cowboy clothing such as flannel shirts, jeans, overalls, bandanas, cowboy hats, cowboy boots, etc. It is optional and up to them if they'd like to. Sometimes we just wear fall colors.
And then there were the games...
The games are SO fun! Here is a sample of what we have done over the years:
three legged races
potato sack races
wheel barrow races
pumpkin rolling contest
pumpkin relay races
throw the hula hoop over the pumpkins (a set of three a few feet away--great for small kids)
hot pumpkin (same as hot potato instead with a pumpkin)
whip cream "pie" eating contest (a piece of bubble gum is hidden in it and the one who can blow a bubble first is the winner)
corn shucking races
corn doll craft
Pumpkin, pumpkin, gourd (same as duck, duck, goose)
Hay bale jumping (this is the biggest competition that is everyone's FAVORITE)
During it all we like to play some clean country music or blue grass just to get everyone in the mood. Here is an example.
Here are some of the pictures:
Kicking off the three legged races
Pumpkin rolling relay races
Cute homemade corn husk dolls
Whip cream pie eating contest
Adults taking in the fun
Hay bale jumping--sometimes stacked at three bales high!
The adults even got in on the fun!
And later after that we had a bonfire going with some smores. We usually we have a good friend come out and sing some interactive country folk songs to the kids during this time but this year he had moved away and we did the smores instead.
Adults and children alike all had a grand time of fun and fellowship--I don't think I have every laughed so hard! It was also a great way to reach out to our neighbors, several of whom showed up. We can't wait to do it again next year!
What ways do you celebrate fall?
Do you have any other ideas to add?