Fun + Free Family Events in Southern New Hampshire - October
We are at the start of the most wonderful time of the year here in New England! Yes, I know that phrase is
typically reserved for Christmas time, but we all know that around here that starts when the first chill hits the air, the leaves start falling, and we can actually get our pumpkin spice lattes HOT without breaking into a sweat.
Here are some of the best outdoor activities going on this month in southern New Hampshire. I'll add to this list as events hit my radar. Please feel free to share events you've seen that are happening locally--email firstname.lastname@example.org with any tips. With all of these events, make sure you call ahead to confirm scheduling!
Nature Skills Cooperative Family Play Time
Friday October 21 | 10am at Keyes Field Milford, NH
The Keyes Field complex in Milford is a somewhat sprawling playground with lots of different activities available. There is a large play structure, and a smaller one nearby for younger climbers. Picnic style seating areas under a huge pergola, big fields with rolling grass to run on or sit and think under the giant maples. There is also a great skate park that is used by multiple age groups during the day and folks seem to coexist fairly well. Check out our facebook group for more event details.
Forest Tales Outdoor Story Time at Maple Hill Farm
Mondays 10am-11 | 117 Ridge St Hollis, NH
This outdoor story time is a fun way to spend an hour outside in the beautiful gardens of Maple Hill Farm. It's a casual family story time and there are trails, gardens, and a nature play area to explore after story time or if kids get too wriggly! Not that I'm speaking from personal experience...
Milford Pumpkin Festival
October 7-9 at the Oval in Milford, NH
The pumpkin festival is basically a giant fall carnival with tons of vendors, food, music, beer, games, and inflatables. The first year we attended I was expecting a glorified pumpkin themed farmers market. UM, NO. This is the pride of Milford and people come from far and wide. Check out the website because there are certain times that are geared for families and young children that can help you plan ahead.
Goffstown Pumpkin Regatta
October 15-16 Main St. Goffstown
This adorable festival holds a giant pumpkin contest on Saturday and a variety of other events including a 10K on Sunday. Check out this unique New Hampshire fall celebration!
Fall Farm Days at Good Pickin' Farm
Saturday Oct 22 and 29 | Westford, MA
OK so obviously this event is not in New Hampshire BUT it's really just a hop skip over the border into MA and I have heard such great things about this place. I can definitely see us using one of our precious Saturdays to go check out one of these events. I don't know what aspects are open to anyone upon entry and what requires a ticket but it's definitely worth a trip to check out farm store goodies and a pony ride.
Note: They are also hosting an Oktoberfest on Saturday October 15 so that's a family friendly event with a little bonus for the grown ups!
Little Explorers at Wadleigh Memorial Library -
Thursdays at 10am (outside unless inclement weather)
The children's section at the WML is so robust with amazing programming for children. Little Explorers is a newer offering focusing on sensory and imaginative experiences for toddlers and preschoolers. They have a great outdoor area where kids can safely roam and explore.
Hike It Baby
Adams Park Peterborough, NH
Mondays at 10am (RSVP required)
Hike It Baby is an organization that helps families with younger children get or stay engaged with nature. I discovered them when I was pregnant with my first child. I was worried my husband and I were going to lose our newfound hobby of hiking once the baby was born, but I discovered HIB after googling "Can you hike with a baby?" Turns out you CAN and there is a whole group of people doing just that! Volunteer ambassadors lead hikes, and this simple 1 mile hike is super fun, moderate enough to be interesting, and it ends at a playground where kids can play and parents can chit chat.
No matter what you end up doing, even if it's just raking up a pile of leaves in your front yard and jumping into them, make sure you find some ways to enjoy this precious and fleeting season. We truly live in the best place on Earth to spend Octobers so make sure to enjoy all 31 of the days.