I’m gonna go ahead and say that I think October is the busiest month of the year. Even more so than December, guys. At least at the holidays, people expect you to be spending time with your family or traveling, but in October, all bets are off. Attend this workshop, enjoy this autumnal hike, go to that field trip, participate in this sports tournament. ALL GOOD THINGS. But October is the month I have to lovingly remind myself to check my priorities, unravel busy, and try not to miss the beauty of the changing seasons. Today’s 10 Things to Do in October doesn’t even begin to put a dent in the activities available in Charlottesville this month. Take my advice and don’t try to do it all. Instead, enjoy the beginning of sweater weather cozied up with the ones you love.
1. Martha’s Market – Back for its 25th year in Charlottesville, Martha’s Market is presented by the Women’s Committee and features a 3-day show with a unique collection of vendors and wares. Tickets are $10 and proceeds support the Breast Health Program and Women’s Center at Sentara Martha Jefferson Hospital. The Market will be held at John Paul Jones Arena October 5 – 7. A preview gala will be held Thursday, October 4.
2. International Day of the Girl Banquet – The Letter Project presents a fundraiser banquet for the International Day of the Girl on Saturday, October 6 at 7:00 pm in Crozet. Attendees receive a swag bag with over $100 in gifts from event sponsors. The Letter Project is a nonprofit organization that sends letters to girls around the world facing difficult circumstances. Every $10 raised sends one bundle of 15 letters to a girl in need.
3. Foxfield Races Family Day – Want to attend Foxfields sans college crowd? Check out the Foxfield Races Family Day on Sunday, October 7. In addition to the steeplechase, there will be Jack Russell Terrier races, a stick pony race, games for kids and teens, and vendor booths throughout the day. Want an even more beautiful venue for a steeplechase? Save the date for the Montpelier Hunt Races held the first Saturday in November.
4. Bellair Farm Open House – Interested in being a CSA member next year but don’t know if it’s for you? Join Bellair Farm for an open house on Sunday, October 7 from 10 – 1. They’ll be offering farm tours, sampling produce, and giving more information about their 2019 shares. If you’re already a member of Bellair and have been enjoying produce like my family all summer long, bring a dish to share and come on out for the Season Celebration Potluck on Sunday, October 14, from 4- 7 for family activities and music by the Gallatin Canyon Band.
5. Family Art JAM – I love an art museum that makes exhibitions accessible for kids. That’s the goal of the Fralin Museum’s Family Art JAM held this month on October 20. Fralin will provide age-appropriate tours, introduce new techniques and art materials, and provide children and their families with the tools to build confidence in art. Thanks to generous supporters of the Fralin Museum at the Unversity of Virginia, monthly Family Art JAMs are free!
6. Boo at the Zoo – Ready for a road trip with your animal loving family? Check out Boo at the Zoo held October 19 – 21 from 5:30 – 8:30 nightly. With more than 40 treat stations, animal demonstrations, decorated trails and opportunities to learn about the spookiest animals the National Zoo has to offer, this evening is sure to be a lot of fun. Tickets for Saturday are already sold out so purchase yours today if you plan to attend!
7. Prime 109 – My hunny is celebrating a birthday this month and what better excuse to check out Charlottesville’s newest restaurant, Prime 109, on the Downtown Mall! This wood-fired steak house is all the talk in town. Featuring local, dry-aged beef, seafood, house-made pastas and vegetarian and vegan fare, Prime 109 is reimagining fine dining in Cville. See you there! (We hear the fries are to die for!)
8. Liberty Mills Farm – Located in gorgeous Somerset, the Liberty Mills Farm boasts a 33-acre corn maze—the largest east of the Mississippi—open daily until November 11. This year, the maze has been constructed with 4 age levels in mind. Pro tip: don’t take your littles through the more difficult levels. They are no joke! (See photo below). You may even consider leaving kids at home and going with friends to Liberty Mills, then meandering through Somerset to the small town of Gordonsville, where you can have the best bbq of your life at BBQ Exchange.
9. Inedible Jewelry Workshop – Every time we hit up the Charlottesville City Market, my girls stop to ooh and aah over the Inedible Jewelry vendor booth. Maddox loves the avocado earrings and Harper is obsessed with the doughnut necklace. Somehow, I feel like these delightful pieces will be finding their way under our Christmas tree this year. Now, for children and adults 12+, Inedible Jewelry co-founder Jessica Partain is offering a Halloween jewelry making workshop on October 24 at the Central Library from 6 – 8 pm. Attendees will make polymer clay ghosts and candy corn. Want to join Maddox and me? Registration opens tomorrow, October 3, at 9 am.
10. Halloween on the Lawn – A Charlottesville tradition, Halloween on the Lawn is a safe—albeit crowded—trick-or-treat experience for all the fairies and ghouls in your family. Held on October 31 from 4 – 6, children will receive treats from lawn residents and members of student organizations at each of the 54 Lawn rooms. A university tradition for nearly 30 years, Halloween on the Lawn is a do not miss event! Plan for parking and get there early to avoid the heaviest crowds.