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Fall Festivities in the Sierra Foothills! 

10 Fall Activities Approved by the Hatch Family

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10 Fall Activities Tested & Approved by the Hatch Family

Eric Hatch
Sep 23 7 minutes read


Fall is here and now is the perfect time to take advantage of the cooler temperatures, and experience the bounty that is the Sierra Foothills. We invite you to give some of these fall activities a try with your friends and family! 


1. Apple Hill, Placerville 

The Apple Hill area is a collection of farms with various offerings and activities. Apple Hill is situated in the greater Placerville region. Special events are hosted at various locations in the Apple Hill area, everything from pumpkin patches, hayrides, craft vendors, and fishing ponds, to everything apple!  Our favorite farm to visit is High Hill Ranch but it does get very crowded. Be sure to try their famous apple donuts. They are amazing!   

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2. Bishop's Pumpkin Farm, Wheatland   

Bishop's Pumpkin Farm in Wheatland is about a 45 min drive from our Combie Rd. office in South Nevada County.  This spot is great fun for families. They have a corn maze, slides for the kids, a mini train ride, a hayride to the pumpkin patch to pick your own pumpkin, a carousel, and lots of delicious baked goods and other treats.  They have an apple cider slushie float that is the bomb!  Prepare to leave with less in your bank account than you started with ;). Open through Nov 6th. 

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3. Coloma Gold Rush Live!

Coloma Gold Rush Live is back in 2022! Join us for this 3-day event and take a walk back in time. Explore our re-creation of an 1850 tent town and visit a mining camp, assay/claims office, gambling hall, general store, blacksmith, carpentry shop, laundry, bakery, and more!

  • EVENT DATE: October 7 – 9, 2022
  • HOURS: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
  • ADDRESS: 310 Back Street, Coloma, California, 95613

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4. Loomis Eggplant Festival

The Eggplant Festival is a blend of music and entertainment, gourmet and festival food, kids’ activities, arts and crafts, cooking contests and demonstrations, and dozens of booths by community organizations and businesses – all while celebrating the purple fruit and the town’s agricultural roots.

  • EVENT DATE: October 1, 2022
  • HOURS: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
  • ADDRESS: Downtown Loomis / Taylor Road
  • COST: Free

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5. Machado Apple Orchard, Annual Apple Festival

The 12th annual Apple Festival is coming up on October 15, with live musical performances, and lots of delicious treats to sample among the rows of apple trees in Auburn. Appearances by Maria's Tacos, Kool Kettle Korn, and other vendors throughout the day. Enjoy fresh caramel apples, pressed apple juice, and of course PIE! All locally grown, harvested, and made in Auburn!

  • EVENT DATE: October 15, 2022
  • HOURS: 9:00 am - 6:00 pm

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6. Auburn Community Harvest Festival

At the Auburn Community Harvest Festival, we feature quality live music, giant pumpkin, giant zucchini and scarecrow contests, arts and crafts booths showcasing local artisans, and a costume contest and parade for young and old alike. There are carnival games and pony rides for kids, food and vendor booths hosted by local nonprofits and Auburn’s own Sugar Plump Fairies are out in friendly force. We produce a day of wholesome activities that cater to the entire family. And it’s free to attend, thanks to our generous sponsors.

  • EVENT DATE: October 15, 2022
  • HOURS: 9:30 am - 4:00 pm
  • ADDRESS: Recreation Park 123 Recreation Drive, Auburn CA 95603

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7. Auburn Mountain Mandarin Festival

When organizers in the tiny foothill town of Newcastle held their first Mountain Mandarin Festival 28 years ago they never imagined that it would grow to a three-day event that now attracts 30-35,000 people from throughout the West Coast. Visitors to the Mandarin Festival, are greeted with an abundance of the tasty citrus, from fresh fruit samples offered by local growers to market products featuring the Sierra foothill’s mandarin oranges. Thousands of filled orange mesh bags await and jams, jellies, infused olive oils, balsamic vinegar, barbecue sauces and body care products are all available for purchase. Visitors are delighted to discover that the food vendors offer everything from mandarin pizza to mandarin glazed wings, mandarin doughnuts and mandarin pulled pork, just to name a few.

  • EVENT DATE: November 18 – 20, 2022
  • HOURS: Friday 11:00 am - 5:00 pm, Saturday 9:00 am - 5:00 pm, & Sunday 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
  • ADDRESS: 209 Fairgate Road Auburn, CA 95603

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8. Bierwagen’s Pumpkin Patch 

A great place to visit in October.  The farm is open October 1-31, Tues-Sun and has a good selection of big and small pumpkins. The kids will enjoy the opportunity to run around the field, find their perfect pumpkin and then drag it back up the hill in a cart.  In addition to the pumpkin patch, the farm stand with fresh apple cider, fruits, and homemade goods is open 10am to 5pm.

  • ADDRESS: Chicago Park at 17437 Lower Colfax Rd.
  • HOURS: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm

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9. Nevada City Farmers Market 

If you’re looking to stock up on all your favorite fall foods, the market runs 8:30 am-1 pm Saturday mornings through December 17th.  Whether you want a warm drink, baked goods, olive oils, or a bounty of organic fruits and vegetables.  When up in the area, my wife and like to grab a pizza and salad at Three Forks Bakery & Brewing Co on Commercial St.

  • ADDRESS: Union Street, Downtown Nevada City
  • HOURS: 8:30 am - 1:00 pm, Saturdays

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10. Pumpkin Patch Express, Greater Sacramento Area  

Celebrate the Fall Harvest on an unforgettable train ride through the Yolo County farmland. The festivities continue at the private park with trick-or-treating, carnival-style games & activities, photo opportunities, and pumpkin patch visit, all included in the ticket price. 

Each ticket includes a 1-hour train ride and 1-hour access to the Fall Festival, available upon return to the station. Festival events and activities include costume contests, scavenger hunts, trick-or-treating, bounce houses, and carnival-style games and activities. Each guest also receives a souvenir pumpkin, which they can select from the station-site pumpkin patch. Additional food and activities, such as gem mining, will be available for purchase. Costumes are encouraged!

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In addition to these, of course, there are lots of trails to hike in Auburn, Nevada City, and Tahoe.  Also, Lake of the Pines has excellent parks and beaches.  If you don't live in LOP, give me a call and you can be my guest, 530-277-3489. 


Take care,

Eric Hatch

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