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Where to Embrace Sweater Weather Around the Main Line

We all need some nice, calming fall vibes. Here’s where to get them.

Ah, November. We’re in between holidays, it gets dark at 5 pm, and… well, the news. Sitting in your house doomscrolling does no good. Instead, make the most of this sweater weather and get outside, breathe in some fresh air, and enjoy the fall foliage. Just grab a sweater and go for it!

Linvilla Orchards Autumn Moon Hayrides

Through October 30th, plus November 3, 4, and 11, 2023, 5–8 pm
137 W. Knowlton Road, Media

An evening hayride at Linvilla Orchards

Don your sweater for an Autumn Moon Hayride, the perfect opportunity to relax and enjoy the beauty of a crisp fall evening. The 20-minute hayride takes you on a loop around Linvilla Orchards so that you can enjoy scents of fruit on the trees while taking in the sunset or the starry sky. At the end of the ride, you are returned to a shared campfire site to enjoy roasting a marshmallow and a sipping on some apple cider. A delightful way to spend an autumnal evening.

Chrysanthemum Festival at Longwood Gardens

Festival through November 12
1001 Longwood Rd., Kennett Square

The Thousand Bloom Chrysanthemum at Longwood Gardens, by Mairin Petrone

Thousands of carefully nurtured and trained chrysanthemums are on display in Longwood Gardens’ Conservatory, including the Thousand Bloom Chrysanthemum — a single plant bearing more than 1,000 sunny yellow blooms on a single stem! The festival goes through November 12, but even if you miss it, you can still enjoy fall feels with fountain shows, the Garden Railway, and more. Then, on November 20, A Longwood Christmas begins to light up the gardens with beautifully adorned trees.

Stoneleigh: a natural garden

Open Tuesday through Sunday, 10 am–5 pm (closed Thanksgiving Day)
1829 East County Line Road, Villanova

Once a family home and estate, Stoneleigh was acquired by Natural Lands and is now preserved as a free public garden. Throughout the fall season, the gardens at Stoneleigh glow with autumn color and light. Paved walkways wind around the property, showcasing its soaring trees and expansive vistas, and make it an an ideal sweater-weather walk for the stroller set. In addition, picnicking is welcome in the pavilion and public restrooms are available. Stoneleigh is open to all, free of charge.

Riverbend Environmental Education Center

Open daily from dawn to dusk
1950 Spring Mill Road, Gladwyne

Photo courtesy of Riverbend Environmental Education Center

Wanna take a sweater-weather walk in the woods that’s right in the middle of the Main Line? Plan an outing to Riverbend, a 30-acre preserve in Gladwyne that’s an island of green surrounded by a bustling, suburban community. Open and free to the public from dawn to dusk every day of the year, Riverbend invites visitors to walk the trails and explore the grounds. In addition to the trails, you can explore meadow, woodland, stream, and pond habitats. The Center also offers engaging events for families and adults, so check out the calendar to see what’s going on.

Shop (or just admire) Seasonal Décor at Terrain

914 Baltimore Pike, Glen Mills
138 Lancaster Avenue, Devon

Photograph by Laura Swartz

Terrain is always a favorite for seasonal inspiration (and some gorgeous photo opps!). Browse their lovely displays and embrace the ambience of autumn in their Fall Shop. If you just can’t wait for the holidays, mark your calendars for November 18, 2023 when the Devon location kicks off the season with their Holiday Open House and the Glen Mills location will be holding Holiday Family Photo Sessions, available by reservation. Both locations also have restaurants that are scenic and delicious, and what’s more, the Devon location has patio seating.

Morris Arboretum & Gardens of the University of Pennsylvania

Open 10 am–5 pm on weekdays and 9 am–5 pm on weekends
100 E Northwestern Avenue, Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia

Out on A Limb: A Tree Adventure Exhibit includes platforms high in the canopy of the trees and a Tree Canopy Walk.

For a sweater weather walk that’s beautiful at every turn, spend a morning or afternoon at the Morris Arboretum. Nature lovers will admire the Great Trees and Signature Gardens. For the kids, there are treetop adventures and other memorable attractions. Children big and small can venture onto the Tree Canopy Walk, a suspended walkway 50 feet above ground. From there, they can peer far down to the ground below as they cross the Squirrel Scramble, a huge hammock-like netting. And don’t miss the Whimsical Woods, a garden for kids including the Willow Wander, a 40’ long, 6’ high tunnel made of living willow, and a Fairy Garden.

Later in November, the miniature, outdoor Holiday Garden Railway will be rolling down the track again, delighting visitors of all ages.

The Brandywine Railroad

November 18, 2023 – January 07, 2024
1 Hoffman’s Mill Road, Chadds Ford

The model Brandywine Railroad has been a holiday family favorite for generations, with miniature details and engaging elements that everyone loves—including interactive components operated by hands-free foot pedals. The display features trains running on 2,000 feet of track and contains more than 1,000 pieces! Trains include locomotives, passenger, and freight trains, plus trolleys that pass through a small village, a farm, factories, a drive-in movie theater and even a carnival.

In addition to the Brandywine Railroad, see Ann Wyeth McCoy’s dollhouse, which features six rooms filled with three-dozen dolls and hundreds of miniature objects that will delight visitors of all ages. After seeing the whimsical display, explore the rest of the museum. including expansive views of the Brandywine River and changing colors of fall.

For more sweater weather fun, check out our list of accessible playgrounds around the Main Line that have something for children of all abilities.

Lead photograph by Charles Parker via Pexels. Article updated by Beth Gilbert-Crowell.

Contributing Writer