The Week­ender

PLAN FOR A GREAT TIME IN THE LAST GREEN VAL­LEY!

The Day - Sound & Country - - The weekender -

North­east Con­necti­cut is an ideal place to re­new and recharge. Fairs, fes­ti­vals, farms, vine­yards and the arts abound in a set­ting of unparalleled beauty. Here are some things to look for­ward to this fall:

Walk­to­ber is the Last Green Val­ley’s an­nual out­door cel­e­bra­tion like no other. From Sept. 22 to Nov. 4, the 35 towns in east­ern Con­necti­cut and south-cen­tral Mass­a­chu­setts host more than 250 walks, hikes, his­toric tales, pad­dles, bike rides, farm vis­its, and other ac­tiv­i­ties. Start­ing Sept. 1, you can down­load the brochure at the­last­green­val­ley.org.

Buell’s Or­chards’ is a great place to get your fill of na­tive fruits and veg­eta­bles (in­clud­ing blue­ber­ries the size of quar­ters!), but their an­nual Har­vest Fes­ti­val should def­i­nitely be on your cal­en­dar. Held ev­ery Colum­bus Day week­end on Sat­ur­day and Mon­day from 10 a.m-4 p.m., it fea­tures live mu­sic, ap­ple and pump­kin pick­ing, cider and sweets, hayrides, a cook­out, bar­be­cue and more. Visit BuellsOrchard.com or fol­low them on Face­book for up­dates.

A short drive from the farm is Natchaug State For­est. There are more than 13,000 acres of for­est habi­tat, as well as the 19-mile Natchaug Trail that is much-loved for pic­turesque hik­ing, fish­ing from the banks of the Natchaug River, and river­front pic­nic sites. It’s also home to the birth­place of Gen. Nathaniel Lyon of East­ford, the first Union gen­eral killed in the Civil War.

Af­ter your hike, head over to Bishop’s Or­chards and pick up some good­ies from their farm mar­ket and win­ery. The wine bar is open year-round and for tast­ings Mon­day through Sat­ur­day from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Sun­day from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. The farm mar­ket, also open year-round, fea­tures fresh pro­duce and gourmet gro­cery items as well as or­ganic food, in­ter­na­tional cheeses, and nov­el­ties. Visit bishopsorchards.com for more.

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