By Alyssa Kasunich
Over fall break, I traveled to a small town in Pennsylvania called Bedford. The population is only about 2,841 people and it is one of my favorite places to visit in the fall season. My family has been camping at a nearby recreation area called Shawnee State Park for many years. Autumn always seems to arrive a bit early here. The leaves are already turning orange and red, the air is cool, and fall activities are in full swing.
One of my favorite parts of our trip is the annual Fall Foliage Festival. It has been happening for over 55 years, and it's set up right in the historical downtown area. It may be hard to believe, but this festival attracts over 70,000 people each year. Held on two separate weekends in October, there are hundreds of craft vendors, dozens of food trucks, and several live music performances. The surrounding shops decorate their storefronts with fall colors and there always seems to be a cinnamon smell floating through the air. They also make fresh apple cider on site, so I always get a cup.
The town was established in the 1800s and many of the original buildings still stand. Just walking through the streets feels like a Halloween movie about witches. I should also note, Bedford is also home to the Omni Bedford Springs Resort, which is alleged to be one of the most haunted hotels in America! I have never visited, but it could be a fun October trip!
In the surrounding towns, there are many apple orchards, so we stopped to buy apples and pumpkins. Bedford county has a total of 14 covered bridges! Many of the locals who live near these bridges tend to decorate them with fall wreaths and pumpkins during autumn.
I look forward to this trip every single year. Partly because of the fall atmosphere and festival, but also because I have many memories with my family there. I would absolutely recommend a road trip there during October if you want to spend a day or two in an autumn town.