Just because the warm weather has passed doesn't meant there isn't fun to be had in Upper Arlington.
Three great opportunities to take advantage of the season are just around the corner: Fall Fest, the Golden Bear Scare and Beggars Night.
Fall Fest, held this coming Sunday at Fancyburg Park from 1 to 5 p.m., is perhaps best known for Huffman's Chili Cook-off.
If you haven't yet registered to compete, you can do so online, but hurry -- Friday, Oct. 11, is the last day to do so. Individuals and teams are eligible, with prizes being awarded for best traditional chili, best green/white chili and best overall chili. Sounds tasty to me!
Just in case you're not caught up on all those DVRed episodes of Top Chef, Fall Fest still has plenty to offer. Carve a pumpkin, make a scarecrow, press old-fashioned apple cider, or make a caramel apple.
Little ones can get their faces painted or romp on the inflatable games. And, of course, there will be live music and entertainment for all to enjoy.
The Upper Arlington Civic Association may be best known for the Fourth of July celebration, but they've got Halloween covered, too. Stop by Smith Nature Park on east Fishinger Road Oct. 22-24 for the Golden Bear Scare and a spooky walk through the woods.
Younger children should attend from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.; the walk is a bit scarier from 7:30 to 9 p.m. to accommodate the older kids.
The UACA is such an integral part of what makes Upper Arlington unique -- their first Fourth of July celebration was in 1923, and they haven't stopped celebrating since. They consistently achieve their mission of bringing families, friends and neighbors together for holidays and civic activities. The Golden Bear Scare is yet another representation of their commitment to fun and civic engagement.
Lastly, Beggars Night will be held at its usual time of 6 to 8 p.m., on Thursday, Oct. 31. Whether you have witches, princesses or superheroes, the Pumpkin Patrol will be out and about to keep a watchful eye on them as they scour their neighborhood for candy.
Marked city trucks with city employee volunteers patrol neighborhoods and are available to assist children if they become lost, scared, hurt or in other need of assistance -- and, of course, to pass out treats! All trucks are equipped with two-way radios to alert appropriate emergency personnel, if necessary.
Homeowners, keep your homes well lit if you're planning on passing out candy. If you won't be home, keep the lights off so that kids aren't encouraged to approach your property.
Keep your front yard, path and driveway clear of things that could trip youngsters, and use battery-powered Halloween decorations instead of anything with a real flame.
Motorists, be sure to drive slowly through neighborhoods on Beggars Night and be on the lookout for children in costumes.
I hope that you and your family have a safe and enjoyable fall season, and that you take advantage of the many opportunities for fall fun in UA.
Leaf collection program
This year's leaf collection program begins the week of Oct. 14 and runs through Dec. 6.
We have some simple guidelines that we ask you to follow each year to help the collection process go as quickly and safely as possible. Just visit uaoh.net and look for the link under "Headlines" on the homepage for full details.
Theodore J. Staton is Upper Arlington's city manager.