October: To-Do List

Illustration by Kailey Whitman

Illustration by Kailey Whitman

1. Go for a walk in the woods
It will be prime time this month for the colors to be ablaze in Philadelphia’s many acres of parks and woodlands. See the show up close and breathe in the fall.

2. Register to vote!
It’s your last chance to make sure that your voice is heard this year. Oct. 11 is the deadline to register, and you can always find the details you need at philadelphiavotes.com

3. Start your garlic
Fresh bulbs of garlic are something every cook likes to have in the house. You can grow your own by breaking apart cloves and planting them this fall in your garden.

4. Decide on your volunteer plan for the year
All over Philadelphia, there are opportunities to work in shelters, food pantries and at organizations that are working to make Philadelphia a more just and equitable city. Make a New Year’s resolution early, and start scouting out the places where your skills and expertise might have the most impact. 

5. Wash your winter gear
If you didn’t have time to clean your winter accoutrements last spring, make sure you pull out those dirty gloves, scarves, face masks and hats so they’re ready to go when the cold weather hits.

6. Pick out your pumpkin
Nothing says fall better than the cavalcade of jack-o’-lanterns that will start showing up on everyone’s stoops. Make a day of it and visit a nearby farm to pick yours out by hand. Linvilla Orchards has a Pumpkinland Harvest Festival open now through Nov. 6, where you choose your own pumpkin, pick apples, listen to live music, or navigate a corn or straw bale maze.

7. Clean out your gutters and downspouts
Climate change is already affecting our region, and warmer summers are just one part if it. We’ll also be getting more and more precipitation during the winters. Make sure your gutters and downspouts can handle the deluge by taking time to clean them out.    

8. Enjoy fun in the neighborhood
Choose from OutFest in the Gayborhood, the Fishtown RiverCity Festival, Old City Fest, Bloktoberfest in Graduate Hospital or the East Falls Autumn Street Festival.

9. Enjoy an Oktoberfest
This year, you can visit the first annual Oktoberfest at the 23rd Street Armory from Oct. 7 through 9, or visit Dilworth Park at City Hall for another Oktoberfest celebration from Oct. 12 to 16.

10. Bring in your plants
If you’ve given your hardworking houseplants some time in the actual sun and rain to keep them healthy—or if you’ve been keeping your favorite herbs in pots out on the patio—it’s time to bring them back inside before the frost does damage.