The most beautiful season is upon us! Leaves are showcasing a golden ray while crock pot hot dishes are slowly cooking a wonderful dish. You can basically smell the sun in the air while you wear your favorite sweater and cheer the home team to victory. With so many wonderful places to visit this season you might be wondering… Why would I make Owatonna my fall escape? Well besides having a small-town charm that is less than an hour from the metro, here are some more reasons to visit Owatonna this fall!
Ghoulish Fall Events
The Sanderson Sisters wish they could visit Owatonna during the Spooktacular Festivities. Owatonna goes all out for Halloween with tons of spooky events for the family to enjoy! Get in the spirit and take part in the ghoulish festivities.
Enjoy a crisp fall afternoon with your family partaking in a favorite fall past time… Trick or Treating. In Owatonna ghosts and goblins of all ages dress up in their costumes and head out for the Annual Trick or Treat Trail! Pick-up sweet treats from local businesses, have fun with festival games, crafts and make sure you look you’re ghoulish at the photo shoot. Even Fido will be able to enjoy this Halloween Festival. Visit the Woof or Treat Trail with treats and goodies just for them. Make sure to dress your pooch up and enter them into the costume contest!
The Season Opener is soon upon us. While some head to the woods to hunt, in Owatonna there are some who head Downtown to hunt down some great deals during The Hunt is On fall shopping event! During the 2nd weekend in November, this shopping extravaganza will feature craft shows, bazaars, and store specials. Also don’t miss the Fall Fashion Show on Thursday where our boutiques will show off their newest season essentials. The best thing about small towns is there are plenty of cute and unique boutiques to keep you busy all weekend long!
Fall is probably one of the best times to head out on the trails! These Owatonna leaf-changing hotspots will be the place to be this season, with moderate temperatures and no mosquitoes!
Venture through over 200 acres of deciduous trees dawning their majestic gold and red colors at Kaplan Woods. The multi-use trails are perfect for hiking and biking, and there are even 6 miles of mountain bike trails for those looking to adventure further into the forest. This trail ranges from easy to intermediate, and include hills, dirt terrain, and heavily wooded landscape. You will feel like you escaped the hustle in bustle while being within city limits.
West Hills sits in the heart of Owatonna and engulfs you in seasonal colors. Sit on a park bench with the warmth of your coffee and take in the color AND history that surrounds you. The entire grounds was once the site for the Minnesota State Public School Orphanage, a self-sustaining institution for neglected children in the 19th & 20th centuries. While you’re enjoying the fall colors, stop by the Orphanage Museum and glimpse into the lives of the children who once called these grounds home.
If you crave a new spot to sit and admire the golden colors, find a bench at Mineral Springs Park. With lots of different trails, a playground, riverside scenery, mineral-rich spring water, and an 18-hole Disc Golf Course, you will never want to leave. You might even see a deer or two prancing through the park. It will feel like you stepped into a postcard!
Warm Fall Flavors
Comfort food has made its rightful place in the fall. In Minnesota, we take our hot dishes, pies, and candy seriously… Owatonna is no exception. We are glad oversized sweatshirts are still in style this Autumn, try these restaurants and candy stores for the best Fall Flavors.
If you imagine fall, there is going to be a warm, buttery, crisp pie sitting on a table, right? The Kernel Restaurant offers delicious comfort food including their homemade pies of all flavors. After biting into one of their pies you will feel like you are back at grandmas. Visit the hometown diner, The Kitchen, where you can sit at the bar with your cup of joe, a slice of pie and converse with one of the locals. You will feel right at home with one of Linda’s homecooked meals this autumn!
During fall you normally fly though candy bags like no one’s business! But before you put another snickers in your mouth, stop by Costa’s Candies and let their chocolate take you out of this world! Indulge in hand-dipped candies, caramels, and truffles all season long. Plus all their candy is Gluten Free! If you need to warm up before you hit the trails, Costa’s also has the Best Chili in Owatonna, they have at least 3 awards to prove it.
It doesn’t feel like fall until you’ve had a caramel apple from Russel Stover’s! Yes, there is a Russel Stover’s store in Minnesota, and we hog all the goodies here in Owatonna. Just seconds off I-35, lies gourmet caramel apples from the classic caramel to varieties with chocolate drizzle and peanuts, handmade fudge, and exclusive flavor boxes. This is a must on your next trip through Owatonna!
Stay tuned for Owatonna’s newest Brewery opening its doors this October! Mineral Springs Brewery hopes to create an environment enhance and enjoy relationships with family and friends. If that doesn’t encompass what fall is about then what does! You will soon be able to sit on the patio and enjoy great-tasting, locally brewed beer on the weekends. Food options will include food trucks, light packaged snacks, and food delivered from local restaurants. Did we mention it will have great riverside views of the fall colors?
Cozy Fall Boutiques
Everyone tries to get a head start on holiday shopping every year; with Labor Day, Black Friday and Shop Local sales it’s hard to avoid it. Take a weekend with your pals to find the unique and charming stylings of Owatonna’s local boutiques.
Make sure to match your house, office or wardrobe with the weather outside. Urban Loft has crisp, trendy home décor and clothing so let your fall inspiration take flight! With home design experts you can transform your living space into something that even Pottery Barn’s catalog would be jealous of.
Let’s Ride Boots and Apparel carry the latest and greatest in western wear that will make you look all fabulous at the next hayride or fall bonfire. Keep it country this fall with a new look from this local boot and apparel store!
Fall is one of the best times to take a walk outside no doubt about that. However, that means greenhouses and nurseys are adding more fall colors and decorations to their inventory. Turtle Creek Nursery & Landscaping has some amazing displays of their fall mums and pumpkins! Maybe even take some home to decorate your home for the season.
Ask a Local
“I love raising my kids here for many reasons, but one of which is the awesome community. From the festivals to holiday parades, Owatonna is always offering some sort of nostalgic ‘days of yore’ type of activity that are enhancing to the imagination and encouraging their creativity.”