Classes are back in session, the leaves are about to change color and the weather is getting cooler, but don’t let the autumn chill take the sizzle out of your love life! There are tons of amazing date opportunities for the fall months that won’t break the bank. Her Campus presents 15 fun and free date ideas for fall.
1. Make “His and Hers” scarecrows
Making scarecrows isn’t just for farmers with a pesky bird problem, it can be a great way to show off your creativity and bond with your guy. First, raid your closets for a scarecrow wardrobe. No plaid? No problem. Any old outfit will do! Once you pick the outfits, stuff the clothes with hay, old newspapers, or leaves until the scarecrows are nice and plump. Then, tie the ends of the sleeves and pant legs with rubber bands or ribbons. Stuff a plastic bag or old pillowcase with leaves for the head and don’t forget to give your scarecrow a face with markers or paint. Add an old hat or some ribbons for hair to complete the dashing duo. Some of our favorite scarecrows were the non-traditional type, like this adorable pair of on a tandem bike. Now you’ll have a perfect scarecrow couple!
2. Bike through the fall foliage
Hop on your bikes to enjoy the crisp autumn air, the beautiful foliage and the sound of crunchy leaves beneath your wheels. Not only is riding your bike a great source of exercise, but you’ll both feel more relaxed and at one with nature as well. Whether you bike through a local park or just around campus, you’re sure to enjoy the scenic ride on this great outdoorsy date.
3. Go on a hayride
Lots of farms have free apple or pumpkin picking hayrides where you just pay for the produce at the end. If you’re not looking to drop the cash for the fruit, sit back, relax and enjoy the hayride together. Afterwards, walk hand-in-hand taking a romantic stroll through the orchards and simply enjoy each other’s company.
4. Visit a haunted house
Face your fears and visit a free haunted house in your area. Link arms and try not to make fun of your guy if he gets more scared than you do! If you can’t find any free haunted houses in your area, consider organizing your own haunted house or volunteering as a “scarer.” Sometimes it can be more fun to be on the other end of the fright!
5. Carve or paint pumpkins
If you have some pumpkins, why not channel some creativity and carve or paint them? There are plenty of free designs for pumpkin carving that are available online. Click here for some great templates! And don’t forget to roast the seeds in the oven for a tasty snack!
6. Midnight bonfire
Use a fire pit to build a romantic bonfire. Roast marshmallows, look at the stars and enjoy each other’s company in the great outdoors. For instructions on building a bonfire, click here. If you’re stuck on campus and don’t have access to a real fire, browse YouTube for a crackling fire video and pop some s’mores in the microwave for a relaxing evening in.
7. Monster movie marathon
Get in the Halloween spirit by checking out Hulu’s scary movie selection and pick some frightening flicks to watch together. Horror movies give you the perfect opportunity to snuggle up close. If the bone-chilling gore becomes too much, you can always turn off the flick and let things heat up between you and your guy.
8. Read ghost stories
Head to your campus library and check out some creepy ghost stories. Cuddle up under a warm blanket and take turns reading the tales aloud to each other. Add candlelight for a romantic yet spooky touch! If you like your scary stories to have a modern flair, read the scary urban legends together by the glow of your laptop.
9. Post-Thanksgiving picnic in the park
Enjoy those Thanksgiving leftovers by planning a romantic lunch in the park with him. Pack some turkey sandwiches and pumpkin pie in a picnic basket and take along a blanket to enjoy your meal amongst the lovely foliage. You can cozy up and give thanks for the wonderful man in your life.
10. Conjure up some treats
Get out the flour, butter and sugar and whip up some delicious desserts. After you’re done baking some Halloween cookies or cupcakes, get creative with the frosting - things will be heating up in no time! Check out these spellbinding recipes:
- Batty Cupcakes
- Halloween Brownie Bites
- Candy Corn Sugar Cookies
- Pumpkin Cookies with Brown Butter Icing
- Halloween Blondies
- Candy Corn and Pretzel Bark
11. Visit a fall festival
Lots of towns host free fall festivals complete with live entertainment, food, and activities. Check to see if there are any fall festivals in your area. Strolling through a fair arm-in-arm with your guy will make for a great autumn date.
12. Go trick-or-treating
Embrace your inner child and go house-to-house with your guy to score some sweets. If he’s convinced that you’re too old for trick-or-treating, suggest going to a Halloween store or thrift shop to try on some crazy costumes. For extra fun, make it a contest to see who can find the most ridiculous costume – loser has to make dinner for the winner!
13. Get crafty
Scour Pinterest for some fun Halloween crafts you can make with your man. Grab some glitter, markers, construction paper and glue and get those creative juices flowing. Some of our favorite Pinterest crafts include:
14. Volunteer together
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, what’s a better time to do some good? Visit a local animal shelter or soup kitchen and volunteer together. You’ll both feel good about giving back to the community, and seeing your guy play with puppies or donning an apron to serve food to the needy will be enough to melt your heart.
15. Pick your own apples (and cook up recipes)!
What’s more synonymous with fall than the crisp smell of apples in the air? Hop in the car and visit your local orchard and make a day trip out of it. Tour the farm, sip some cider and nibble on some cider donuts (delicious)! Check out some of these other apple recipes to make together!
What fall date ideas do you have? Let us know in a comment below!