fall

13 Ways to Pumpkin Spice Up Your Weekend (10/12 - 10/14)

BY SIOBHAN DEREMER

It seems like the humidity and last remnants of summer may be burning off this weekend so we can finally break out the sweaters, cozy blankets, and finally turn off those ACs! With last week’s roundup, we let you know that fall is in full swing in the Lehigh Valley and there are even more chances for you to enjoy it this weekend. Even haters of all things pumpkin spice (I think I saw PS dog treats the other day) will have something to smile about!

FRIDAY

Jack-O-Lantern Lane at Da Vinci Science Center (10am - 5pm; through Sunday | Admission costs vary)
Looking for a kid-friendly science-filled Halloween experience? The experts at Da Vinci have you covered. There’s no scares but plenty of fun when checking out Frankenstein’s Lab and making fun monster masks. On weekends, check out the It’s Alive live science demo, too! The exhibit’s included with general admission.

Beauty Boosting Happy Hour (5pm - 7pm | $25)
If your beauty regimen is feeling like you need a reboot after summer, Blink27 salon is looking to save you! $25 saves your spot for a deep conditioning treatment, blowout, and amazing collagen concoctions from Crave in Bethlehem. Get your routine back in shape and celebrate Friday night all at once.

Hocus Pocus Movie Night at Promenade (5:30 - 9pm | Free)
Don your favorite Sanderson sister outfit and get out to the Promenade Shops for a free outdoor showing of a Halloween classic, Hocus Pocus. And in addition to the movie, there’s free popcorn, Peeps, glitter tattoos, coloring contests, raffles, and more. Bring your own chairs and blankets and let fall put a spell on you!

Gentle Is the New Advanced Yoga (6 - 9pm | $60)
The Yoga Loft is bringing in J. Brown to take you back to the roots of yoga. Forget trendy Bikram, bendy, aerial yoga and get back to the breathing and relaxing basics. This class will take you through a more traditional and therapeutic approach to yoga that’s sure to ground your practice. Reserve your spot here.

SATURDAY

PBS 114 Coffee Ride (7:30 - 11:30am | Free)
Performance Bicycle Allentown plans to ride from their shop off Airport Road to Johnny’s Bagel in downtown Bethlehem and back (after breakfast and coffee, of course) each Saturday through November 3. Get the best of fall along the D&L trail with about a 19 mile ride for all levels.

2nd Annual Winged Warriors 5K (7 - 9am | $25)
Listen, it’s the season for 5Ks. And while we absolutely support getting outside and running/walking for amazing charities (I walk for Alzheimer’s in honor of my Dad each year!), you never really see them on an airport runway. All proceeds support Pediatric Cancer Foundation of the Lehigh Valley and run/walk while jets land around you! Sign up here.

Ottertoberfest at the LV Zoo (10am - 4pm | Admission costs vary)
It’s the season for beer and pretzels and now LV Zoo is getting into the mix with their adorable otters. Twenty local gourmet food and craft vendors are headed to the LV Zoo on Saturday for German and PA fun complete with pumpkin patch, activities and crafts for kids, and live music.

Saucon Harvest Festival (12 - 7pm | Free; Food, Beer, and Wine Trail $20)
Head to Dimmick Park for family-friendly activities and a pretty legendary sounding food, wine, and beer trail that includes food from a dozen local restaurants paired with Lost Tavern beer and wine from South Italy Imports. This 3rd annual festival support Saucon Valley Youth Sports Programs with live music from our faves Craig Thatcher and Tim Harakal.

Live Music at Eight Oaks Distillery (3 - 6pm | Free)
Each Saturday evening, Eight Oaks is bringing some of the best from the local music scene out to their scenic New Tripoli tasting barn. Enjoy the fall weather with their indoor/outdoor setup, handcrafted cocktails, and some of the best country views in the area.

SUNDAY

Run & Boat with Aardvark Sports Shop (8 - 11am | $20)
This is an event that pairs outdoors with fitness in a perfect way, especially for fall. Run 4.5 miles from Aardvark to Canal Park in Allentown and then head down river in canoes led by a guide. Focus on the local ecosystem and get your morning workout in! Grab your spot here.

Yoga at the Gallows (11am - 12pm | $25)
This 21+ yoga class for all levels ends with one of the best caps to yoga: a craft cocktail. Enjoy the best spirits from newcomer to the local distillery scene, Gallows Hill Spirits Co. Bring your own mat, water bottle, and thirst for craft drinks. Get a spot here.

Fall Family Fun at Klein Farms (12 - 4pm | Free)
What would a fall roundup be without a local farm weekend event? Like many of the local farms, Klein Farms in Easton is celebrating each weekend in October with free hayrides, pumpkins, farm tours, corn maze, and their usual delicious produce (milk, ice cream, veggies, cheeses, and more). Head out Saturday or Sunday for some fall fun.

Boot Breast Cancer with Bethlehem Steel FC (3 - 6pm | $12)
If you love a good soccer game and want to benefit breast cancer as well, this Sunday’s match at Lehigh University will have multiple options to give back. Wear pink and half of your ticket price will go to the Cancer Support Community (all proceeds that day go to the same place). Keep an eye out for other chances to raise awareness and enjoy local sports at the same time. Grab tickets here.

*Got an event we should list in upcoming weeks? Shoot us an email here or leave a comment to be considered. We have final approval for all listings, but we love suggestions!

Photo by Daniel Frank from Pexels.

Bring It On Fall! What to Do This Weekend to Celebrate (9/14 - 9/16)

BY SIOBHAN DEREMER

It’s definitely beer and cider season here in the Lehigh Valley and as the fall leaves ramp up to start falling, we’ve got you covered for weekend events to enjoy—even if beer isn’t your thing and you’ve already gone on cider overload in your autumn excitement. Grab your last summer outfits and check out what’s happening this weekend.

Friday

International Cultural Festival in Allentown (4-9pm Friday; 9am-9pm Saturday / Free)
Looking to raise cultural awareness and unity, this festival taking place at the Arts Park in downtown Allentown plans to give Lehigh Valley families an opportunity to experience different cultures. There’ll be performances from local school groups, hip hop artists, and more.

Goat Yoga at Mad Lavender Farm (7-8:30pm/ $35)
Didn’t get enough from last week’s goat yoga?? Here’s your chance for another baaa-maste (I’m so clever) at this lavender farm in Milford NJ. Once the indoor session’s over, stay for petting time! Grab tickets here.

Saturday

West End World of Food Festival (11am-10pm / Free)
One of the best block parties in the Theater District on 19th Street in Allentown, this festival brings together over a dozen food trucks and local food vendors. With performances from kids from the School of Rock, you can enjoy the serenade and enter a few eating contests in the meantime.

Herbs to Help Your Yoga Practice (1:30-3pm / $15; $13.50 for members)
Different herbs can enhance how you feel and center your body and mind when paired with your yoga practice. Let Cheryl from Hilltop Herbals give you the lowdown on using herbs in teas, infusions, and food to balance you.

Eight Oaks Americana Makers & Music Festival (2-10pm / Tickets start at $10)
In its third year, this festival shares local music and gives vendors a chance to share their wares with the community. Fresh from national tours, these musical artists will fill the air while you browse artisan and handmade clothing and other items. All proceeds go to charity and you get a bonus copper mug to use and take home!

Lehigh Valley Craft Beer Festival (3-6pm / $35; $45 for VIP)
’Tis the season for beer festival and now it’s Coca Cola park’s turn. Head down to the field to sample beers from over 35 breweries and enjoy music and on-field games. VIP gets you in an hour earlier to enjoy the festivities.

1 Year Anniversary at Hardball Cider (7-10pm / Free)
Come celebrate one year of amazing cider in Bethlehem with Hardball! Enjoy drink and food specials all night to help them kick off their second year with fun and apple-filled joy. Need an idea of what to order? Their Dropball has a super light cranberry flavor that’ll get you more than ready for fall—and for celebrating.

Sunday

Feng Shui & Its Applications in Your Life (9-10:15am / Free)
Ever wondered about this practice of centering your surroundings for life success and harmony? You’ll learn the history and use of this ancient art, how it has residential and commercial application, and how you can use it for your good health and relationships.

Grand Re-Opening at Let’s Play Books (10am-3pm / Free)
One of the best bookstores in the Lehigh Valley is on Main Street in Emmaus. A local staple, this house of used and new books is debuting their new layout this weekend. Check it out and see if they unveil a new name, too!

Cars & Coffee Lehigh Valley (9am-12pm / Free)
Calling all car buffs! Head down to SteelStacks to check out modded and rare exotic vehicles of all sorts. Sip on some joe and let your jaw drop at custom cars from all over. Chevy 21 will have some crazy ones down there, so don’t miss it!

Photo by Magova from Pexels.


Local Spirits Highlight: Triple Sun Spirits

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by Siobhan DeRemer

Late fall is officially here in the Lehigh Valley (my flannel is out in full form) and that's the signal to move the outdoor wine and beer drinking inside, or at least to your closest fire pit. And what better to throw in your glass as you warm up than a pour of some local booze? The Valley has a number to choose from, but we're throwing a spotlight on our friends at Triple Sun Spirits.

Paired with the mind and passion of former brewer Kristofer Kwant, the spirits at Triple Sun are created in-house with an authentic small-batch style, giving them character and utilizing an environmentally friendly process. Kwant's got his sights set on providing the Valley with not only top-notch artisanal spirits, but also a community business that involves other local makers in its process. So far, Triple Sun has partnered with Hardball Cider and Weyerbacher, with more to come in the future. Their location is also a hotspot in Emmaus, situated right next to Yergey Brewing Company, and host to delicious local food trucks and events of all kinds (including one of our favorites: Yoga Happy Hour). 

You can currently grab their Caribbean-style rum (light, dark, and golden), gin, apple brandy, corn whiskey, and stouted whiskey directly at the distillery, by ordering online, checking out some of the local establishments that serve Triple Sun spirits (House & Barn and Hardball Cider on Main are just a few), or browsing your local Wine & Spirits. The distillery also has a cocktail menu to rival some of the best bars in the area and it changes with the seasons. One of our favorites is apple brandy hot cider and since bourbon is on the schedule to be released in September 2018, we'll be back to try an Old Fashioned or ask for it neat and enjoy all the unadulterated flavors. 

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For more info, to plan a visit, or to see what events are coming up, visit Triple Sun's site and follow them on social media (Instagram, Facebook). If you make a visit and love everything you drink and see, consider picking up some holiday gifts to share the Triple Sun love with friends and family.

The genius mixologists at this Emmaus distillery are jumping on the fall bandwagon and providing us with a recipe for their Pumpkin Spice Gin Sour. The name and directions are as basic as they come—not to mention delicious! Pick up a bottle of their gin and try it out.

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Pumpkin Spice Gin Sour

2 oz Triple Sun Spirits Co. gin
Juice from half a lemon
1 Tbsp pumpkin puree
0.5 oz Monin Pumpkin Spice syrup
Dash of Fee Brothers Old Fashioned bitters
Pumpkin spices and rosemary, for garnish

Put first 5 ingredients in ice and shake for 1 minute; pour through strainer into coup glass. Then, garnish with pumpkin spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and clove) and a sprig of rosemary.

 

14 Things You Should Do This Week in the Lehigh Valley (9/25 – 10/1)

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By Siobhan DeRemer

Happy Fall, Lehigh Valley! We hope your weekend was amazing at Hardball Cider, Barre3 in the Park, and experiencing some SUP Yoga or one of the other super fun events we mentioned last week. In addition to this week's events, if you're just looking to get outside with family and friends and enjoy the cooler weather, check out our post about the best walking/running trails in the LV right here.

Now that it's officially fall (the weather will catch up eventually, right??), the Valley is exploding with awesome outdoor events to get you ready for falling leaves and cooler temps. Here are some to try this week:

MONDAY

Happy Hour Yoga at Triple Sun Spirits (6 pm - 8 pm/ Cost: $15)

One of our favorite local distilleries is offering a great deal of a 1-hour yoga session complete with yoga mat/block rental and access to their amazing cocktail list to celebrate after you've stretched yourself out. The dates for the Groupon are Monday, 9/25 and another opportunity is Monday 10/23 as well. Sign up here

In-House Pet Chiropractic Services at The Dining Dog (3pm – 6pm / Cost: $45)

Does your pup have chronic hip or back pain issues? Then this is the spot for you. Every Monday, the Dining Dog & Friends pairs up with All Points Equine LLC to bring chiropractic services out of the vet's office. While you're there, be sure to check out their great selection of food, treats, and specialty items! More info here.

TUESDAY

Doggie "Yappy" Hour for Charity at Fegley’s Allentown Brew Works (5:30 pm – 8:30 pm)

Every week, Fegley’s Allentown Brew Works hosts a “yappy” hour with proceeds from select drinks benefitting a different dog charity (this week: Harnessed to Hope, which is a rescue organization for northern breed dogs).  And of course, there will be pups in attendance. More info here

Jack-O-Lantern Lane at the Da Vinci Science Center (various times; check museum hours)

Spanning until November 5, check out the lights and spooky faces in this walk-through Halloween exhibit for all ages. Come see the 50+ sculpted pumpkins and learn about energy use in the process. For more info and to check museum hours, check things out here.

WEDNESDAY

$5 Yoga Flow Wednesdays at West End Yoga (6pm - 7pm/ Cost: $5)

This is the last week to stop in at West End Yoga for their $5 Yoga Flow taught by recent yoga graduate instructors. This level 2 class teaches some new sequences and might be just what you need to get back into your practice. No need to preregister, but find more info here.

Make a Fall Container Workshop at Palmer Nursery (6pm - 7pm/ Cost: $20)

If crafts are the sign that fall is here for you, look no further than Palmer Nursery in Easton. Bring a bit of the autumn season to your home. More info and registration info here.

THURSDAY

Fall Sangria Releases at Sleepy Cat Urban Winery (various times / Cost: Free)

'Tis the season for pumpkin and spices and Sleepy Cat Urban Winery is ready to release their newest fall flavors. The little winery in the middle of the city is just steps away from the 19th Street Theater District so stop by after a show at the Civic Theatre or before dinner downtown! More info here.   

Pub Run with ASICS at Emmaus Run Inn (6pm – 9pm / Cost: Free)

The well-known running resource shop in Emmaus has teamed up with Funk Brewing Company and ASICS to create a pub crawl/run around town, complete with a growler! Special fills along the way and a chance to test out ASICS gear. RSVP and more info here.

FRIDAY

Allentown ArtsFest (runs daily until October 1 / Cost: Free)

Perhaps one of the biggest arts festivals in the Lehigh Valley, Cedar Beach in Allentown comes alive this weekend with local music, artist exhibits, vendors, kids activities (including a skate park), local food and beer, and even more. Come support local art and see what the LV art scene has to offer. More info here

SATURDAY

Intro to Ashtanga Yoga Mysore at Lehigh Valley Yoga (11am - 1 pm/ Cost: $25)

Lehigh Valley Yoga is the Valley's only studio with Traditional Ashtanga classes. This 2-hour workshop is a comprehensive introduction to the Ashtanga (Mysore) practice with all materials included. You will also get access to an exclusive $30 unlimited pass to keep your practice going. Sign up here

Pumpkin and Produce Picking Around the Valley

The season is just right for pumpkins, apples, corn mazes, kids' outdoor fun, and even more at the Lehigh Valley's various farms. Check out our post here for more info on farms and be sure to check out their sites and hours before visiting.

SUNDAY

Guided Horseback Rides Through Jacobsburg State Park (12pm – 5pm / Cost: $50 per rider)

Throughout October and November, Quarter K Ranch offers 1-hour rides through scenic Jacobsburg Park in Nazareth. See how fall has changed the streams, woods, and fields with just 2-6 other riders on this nature-filled short retreat. More info here

Yoga at Allentown Arts Park (12pm – 4pm / Cost: Free)

As part of the Allentown Art Museum's Fall Festival, test your yoga skills with the teachers from Easton Yoga with kids yoga at the Arts Park until 2:30pm and then yoga is open for all ages until 4pm. Be sure to visit the Allentown Art Museum as well for new exhibits, including the International Children's Film Festival. More info here

Hops 4 Hope at Lost Tavern Brewing (10am – 8pm / Cost: $10)

Come enjoy the second annual music and beer festival with food, great beer, and games all to benefit Penn's State's THON efforts against pediatric cancer (100% of profits will go toward charity). More info here.

*Got an event we should list in upcoming weeks? Shoot us an email here or leave a comment to be considered. We have final approval for all listings, but we love suggestions!

Greenmouth's Super Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

By Stephanie Eckelkamp

We've arrived at that time of year (between Thanksgiving and Christmas/Hanukkah/whatever-you-celebrate) when all you want to do is shove your face with sugar cookies, peppermint mochas, PSLs, and Reese's peanut butter Christmas trees. And who could blame you? With friends and family urging you to "treat yo' self, it's the holidays!" it's not surprising that a day or two of indulging can somehow turn itself into a month of forgetting what vegetables are. But we've got your back. Or at least the folks at Greenmouth Juice Bar & Cafe do.

According to Linda White, a Lehigh Valley-based health coach and yoga instructor who also manages Greenmouth's Easton location, you can get all that delicious, desserty, decadent flavor of your favorite fall dessert (pumpkin pie!) while loading your body with nutrient-rich super foods. Here, she shares her super pumpkin pie smoothie, which you can easily whip up at home or pick up at your nearest Greenmouth location.

This blend is packed with protein and anti-inflammatory omega-3s from hemp and flax seeds, skin-brightening beta-carotene from pumpkin, hormone-balancing maca powder (which can actually help reduce PMS symptoms!), and electrolyte-rich banana and coconut water to boost post-workout recovery. It's also naturally sweetened with dates--no added sugars!

Super Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

5 oz (1/2 cup + 2 tbsp) coconut water
5 oz (1/2 cup + 2 tbsp) coconut milk
1 Tbsp hemp seeds
1 Tbsp flax seeds
1 tsp maca powder
1-2 dates, pitted
3-4 Tbsp pumpkin purée
1 frozen banana
1/4 tsp vanilla
Small handful of ice

Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a glass and drink that goodness up!

Does the holiday grind have you feeling unmotivated when it comes to maintaining healthy habits? Contact Linda White for a health coaching consult (620-781-7062), or shoot us an email and we'll connect you. 

Coconut-Curry Butternut Squash & Apple Soup

By Stephanie Eckelkamp

Fall is in full swing, which is pretty exciting for more reasons than one. Not only do you have full license to wear long, butt-covering sweaters and wool-lined moccasin slippers, but it's soup season. Specifically, butternut squash soup. And we've got just the recipe. It's creamy, delicious, and surprisingly good for you. Paleo and vegan dieters, we're talking to you, too! 

STEP 1: Assemble ingredients. Here's what you'll need:

  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and chopped (save seeds!)
  • 1 green apples, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons cooking fat (butter, avocado oil, coconut oil, and olive oil all work well)
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup full-fat coconut milk (from can)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • black pepper to taste

STEP 2: Add cooking fat to a large pot over medium heat. Add onion, curry powder, ginger, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Saute until onions are soft. 

STEP 3: Add squash, apples, broth, coconut milk, salt, and pepper to pot. Simmer, partially covered, until squash and apples are fork-tender, 15-20 minutes.

STEP 4: Remove from heat. Puree soup with an immersion blender on low until smooth (or carefully puree soup in a traditional blender in batches, then return to pot). Return to heat and simmer soup on low to medium-low, stirring frequently, until it reaches the desired thickness, 10-15 minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.

STEP 5: Rinse squash seeds thoroughly. Add to a skillet over medium heat with a tablespoon of cooking oil and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toast seeds, stirring frequently, until crispy, about 15 minutes. Remove from skillet and cool on a paper towel-lined plate. 

STEP 6: Ladle yourself a big old serving and sprinkle with toasted butternut squash seeds and maybe even some leftover turkey, bacon, stuffing, cranberry sauce...whatever. We won't judge. 

Got any amazing fall or winter recipes you want to share?? Shoot us and email, or leave a comment below, to potentially be featured! 

 

How to Make Healthy(ish), Locally Sourced Apple-Bacon Mini Pies

By Stephanie Eckelkamp

First, let me just say, holy mother of baked goods, these are delicious. 

I've been craving pie lately, but as a someone who's pretty health conscious and really damn busy, I just couldn't muster the energy to make a traditional, pain-in-the-ass, nutritional shit-show of a pie crust.  So I decided on mini single-serve pies with an almond flour and nut crumb topping that lets you truly appreciate the apples. Oh, and just for fun, I added some bacon (from Breakaway Farms, purchased at the Emmaus Farmers' Market!) to the filling, because bacon makes anything good, great. It adds just the right touch of smokiness, and the saltiness actually enhances the sweet elements of the pie. 

So, go get your hands on some Lehigh Valley apples (check out one of these local orchards!) and whip up these bad boys ASAP. 

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Mini Apple-Bacon Paleo Pies

Filling:
4 medium to large apples, cored and sliced
2 slices bacon, chopped (preferably uncured and organic)
Sprinkle of cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice

Crumb Topping:
1 cup almond flour
½ cup chopped pecans
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp allspice
2 Tbsp grass-fed butter, chilled
1-2 Tbsp maple syrup

1) Prepare filling: Heat cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add chopped bacon and sauté for about 2 minutes. Add sliced apples to skillet with bacon and sauté until soft, about 8 minutes. Add spices and sauté an additional 2 minutes. 
2) Prepare crumb topping: Add almond flour, pecans, and spices to a medium bowl and mix to combine. Add butter, “cutting” it into the dry ingredients with a fork until it’s well combined and mixture has a crumbly consistency. Add maple syrup and combine all ingredients, mashing them together with the fork and trying to maintain the mixture’s crumbly texture.
3) Divide filling among four custard cups and top each with about two heaping tablespoons of crumb topping. Place custard cups on a baking sheet.  
4) Place mini pies in oven and broil on low until tops start to brown and crisp up, about 10 minutes. You may need to finish them up on high for about a minute.
5) Enjoy! These things are freakin amazing.

We've Created the Ultimate Healthy Pumpkin Spice Latte (You're Welcome)

By Stephanie Eckelkamp

I've never actually purchased a Starbucks PSL because: 1) they’re freakin' expensive, 2) a grande clocks in at around 50 grams of sugar (that’s the same as a 16-ounce bottle of Coke!), and 3) I’m afraid I’d get totally hooked and never be able to forgive myself. 

So, what’s a basic (but health-minded) chick to do? Create her own, that’s what. Given my background in health coaching and my day job as a nutrition editor, it’s probably not surprising that I love morphing recipes that are total sugar bombs into guilt-free treats. So, after some trial and error in the kitchen, I’m happy to report that this recipe is the result—pure, just-sweet-enough deliciousness with a hint of fall.

Better-For-You Pumpkin Spice Latte
Serves 1

1 cup brewed coffee
1/4 cup full-fat coconut milk*
1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk*
2 Tbsp pumpkin puree
1 Tbsp maple syrup
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Heat all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring, until hot. It will begin to simmer and bubble. Pour mixture into a blender (with the cover ever so slightly cracked, but held securely with your hand, to release steam) and puree until frothy, about 10 seconds. Pour into your favorite mug, and drink that goodness up. 

*Feel free to use regular milk, preferably organic. But if you’re dairy-free, I find that this ratio of coconut to almond milk makes for a creamy treat that’s not over-the-top rich. 

Peace, Love, & Pumpkin Spice!