Fall-specific, family friendly activities to do in and near Jamestown (& western), NY
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Start in downtown Jamestown
This list starts in Jamestown, NY, since I originally made it as a list of fall things to do specifically in and near Jamestown (my hometown!).
But it ventures out into the best of what western NY has to offer in the fall, so I think it is fair to claim “fall things to do in western NY.”
They are listed in order of closeness to Jamestown, the farthest being just under a 2 hr. drive from there, so it’s a good place to base yourself for a fall trip to the area.
Drink a Pumpkin Latte at Crown St. Roasting Co.
If you’re anything like my husband, you’re groaning right now (black coffee, all the way!). But if you’re like me, you’re cheering!
Fall is the BEST time of year to visit a coffee shop, because of all the delicious pumpkiness! And since we’re going to be exploring “fall related” things, in order of their closeness to downtown Jamestown, what better place to start than with a fall drink, right in the heart of downtown?
Get a classic pumpkin latte, or try their delicious cozy cider!
Crown St. Roasting Company:
If you’re starting from somewhere other than Jamestown, find a local coffee shop in your area and get yourself a pumpkin latte!
Visit the Farmer’s Market
Nothing sounds more classically fall than a farmer’s market. Except maybe apple picking. Or pumpkin carving. But still.
Now that we have our hands warmed up by the delicious pumpkin latte we’re holding, take a stroll through the booths right outside on Third St. to see if there are any good looking apples for a pie-making activity later.
Or if there are any good looking, already made pies. If you want to go the easy route.
Please Note: The 2022 farmer’s market is moving indoors for the month of October.
Downtown Jamestown Farmer’s Market:
Saturdays, through October, 10 am - 2 pm
You can probably find a farmer’s market near you even if you’re not in Jamestown.
Cemetery Tours & Halloween Tours with the Fenton History Center
Every year in October, the Fenton History Center runs carriage tours and walking tours in Lakeview cemetery, as well as a Halloween themed tour in the mansion.
Along the tours you will “meet” famous local people who are buried in the cemetery, or fairytale characters come to life (you might even see me as one of the characters!).
The fairytale tours end with apple cider and amazingly decorated cookies from the Gypsy Moon Cake Co. (which also happens to be located right downtown, if you want to visit for yourself!).
Fenton History Center:
Website (Sign up for a tour here!)
This opened up a few years ago. I always thought it looked fun, but having no kids of my own (and being slightly over the age of 10), I figured there wouldn’t be much for me to do there.
But I finally went to check it out, and there was plenty to do for adults too (even with half the stuff shut down for 2020)!
You can basically get your fall fix of everything here: corn mazes, hay rides, haunted houses, hot apple cider, pumpkin picking and pumpkin doughnuts! Our personal favorite was the apple canon (but that costs a little extra)!
Website (Open weekends, end of September - October)
Make a Fall Craft at Brindle Barn
The Brindle Barn is a store/restaurant/studio all in one. You can come for a grab and go, self-serve breakfast (they might have the pumpkin waffles out!), sign up for one of the many different craft classes, or just go shopping.
Stay for lunch, then grab ice cream at the little stand next door, take it across the street to the beautiful park on Chautauqua Lake, and check out the world famous “I Love Lucy” statues. There’s just so much to do right in this little corner of western NY!
Fall Activities at the Audubon Society
In addition to being a beautiful place for an afternoon stroll through the colored leaves, there are always a lot of activities going on at the Audubon Society, such as the enchanted trail and the Dragons & Fairies festival.
They have events throughout the fall season, so be sure to check out their website for what’s coming up.
Jamestown Audubon Society
Website (It’s already on the upcoming events page, so you can scroll through and see if you want to register for anything!)
Drink Cider at Whittier Apple Farm
One of the cutest places to visit in the fall in western NY is Whittier Apple Farm in Blockville. They have a cute loft overlooking their barn where you can hang out and drink fresh apple cider (hot or cold).
If you’re just overflowing with fall vibes after you finish your cider, you can buy a bushel of apples or a pumpkin to take home for pie (or just decor)!
Be aware that the barn is not heated, so if it is a cold day, it will be cold inside the barn.
Also be aware that they only accept cash or checks.
Whittier Apple Farm:
Hike at Allegany State Park
While it may not be the warmest time of year, fall is definitely the prettiest time of year to take a walk through the woods. Head over to nearby Allegany State Park to enjoy a walk through the impressive fall foliage.
Allegany State Park:
Apple Picking at Meadows Farm
If you don’t have a friend with her own orchard and apple press (unlikely), then you might be looking for somewhere you can go to pick your own apples.
Whether you want them for cider, pie, or just to eat, picking apples is a fun activity to do with family and friends.
Meadows Apple Farm:
Yeah… I’ve never tried this. I jump when my husband hides around the corner and says, “Boo!”
But if you’re interested in a haunted hayride, this is the place to go! They also have a haunted maze, AND a haunted barn! Yikes!
Plus, Ellicottville is super cute!
Nightmare Hayrides on Sommerville Street:
Long before Pumpkintown existed, there was Pumpkinville. Of course, Pumpkintown is much closer, but Pumpkinville does have a lot to offer. Including being open all week long.
I haven’t been to Pumpkinville since I was… 4, but they definitely seem to be geared towards kids. But they do have an epic corn maze.
And pumpkin doughnuts.
Great Valley, NY
Sprague’s Maple Farms
No fall season is complete without a trip to Sprague’s Maple Farms. It might seem like a long drive from Jamestown at first glance, but once you get there, it will be well worth it. Especially if you go in the fall.
On weekends starting the last weekend in September, through October, they offer hayrides up the hill to their sugar shack, where you can taste test free apple cider and doughnuts. You can also walk along the trails up there if you need to work off some of the amazing pancakes and sausage you ate (which you will).
With the caramel corn, the gift shop, the animal statues, the playground and everything else, Sprague’s is a whole experience. And well worth the drive!
Sprague’s Maple Farms:
Fall Foliage Train Ride
An old-fashioned train ride is a fun way to view the many colors of fall. Especially because staring out the window at the trees is not advisable while driving.
The Arcade and Attica Railroad is a 1 1/2 hr. drive from Jamestown. They have different seasonal rides throughout the year, including a fall foliage tour. Train rides are available on weekends and several Wednesdays throughout October, and last 2 1/2 hrs.
Arcade and Attica Railroad:
Letchworth State Park
This is about a 1 hr. 40 min. drive from Jamestown, but it is absolutely beautiful in the fall. It’s fun for all ages (and levels of hikers) to explore.
While a great view anytime of year, fall is my absolute favorite. It also makes a great day trip combined with a brunch stop at Sprague’s.
Pro Tip: Try to avoid visiting on weekends, if you can. As one of the most popular seasons to visit Letchworth, it can get pretty crowded on a Saturday afternoon.
Read more about visiting Letchworth State Park.
Letchworth State Park:
Bonus: Make Glass Pumpkins
I labeled this one as a “bonus,” because I am not sure if it quite qualifies as “western” NY.
Either way, Corning Museum of Glass is just over 2 hrs. from Jamestown, so it’s a very doable day trip from the area. Or you can stay near Corning, and also visit Watkin’s Glen State Park in the fall (double bonus!).
CMoG is of course an anytime of year destination, but it is especially fun in the fall to make your own glass pumpkin! Or just shop around the gift shop for one of the many already made pumpkins!
They even have a glass “farmer’s market” on certain dates.
Read all about visiting Corning Museum of Glass (and making glass pumpkins!).
Corning Museum of Glass:
Got Other Ideas?
Have ideas of fun fall things to do in the area? Be sure to share them in the comments below!