Everything You Need to Know to Have a Fun Fall Picnic

Blue and black plaid blanket on the ground next to water with a picnic basket, some snacks, a pillow and another throw blanket

It’s the perfect time for a picnic and I’m sharing with you everything you need to know to have a fun fall picnic.

The weather is cooling down a bit which makes it a perfect time for a picnic. If you don’t have a picnic basket you can pack your food and drinks in a cooler and head to a fun spot for a meal.

Take a break from your fall decorating and get outside!

Blue and Black plaid blanket with picnic basket. On the picnic basket is a book, flowers and a candle. Next to the basket is a wooden board with cheese, crackers and grapes

1. Where to Go

  • A park is a great place for a picnic, especially if you have kids and there is playground equipment
  • The beach or waterfront area can be a fun place to swim or fish
  • If your a hiker a place off a trail can be a perfect place to have a fall picnic
  • Urban spaces can be fun. Think of museum grounds, roof tops, a town square or urban garden.
  • The Zoo – Bringing a picnic to the zoo makes for a really fun day
  • A botanical garden
  • Your own backyard, balcony or deck

Eating outside is just a fun change of pace for anyone. If it’s with a group or just by yourself, there is something to be said for eating a meal in a different environment and bringing your own food can save some money. However, if you want to splurge, getting a salad or sandwich as take-out can be just as fun.

Black and Blue Plaid Blanket in a field with a picnic basket, snacks, a book and a throw.  Everything you need for a fun fall picnic

2. What to Bring

  • Picnic Basket or cooler with ice
  • Something to sit on if they don’t have picnic tables. A picnic blanket or bag chair are perfect.
  • Food & Drinks
  • Plates, glassware, utensils, napkins, corkscrews, cutting board & knife
  • Bug Spray, Sunscreen & Sunglasses
  • Trash Bag, Wipes & Paper Towels

3. Fun Picnic Food

  • Salad
  • Sandwich
    • Italian Sub
    • Turkey, Cranberry & Brie
    • Caprese Sandwich
    • Pimento Cheese Sandwich
    • Turkey, Roasted Red Pepper & Cheese
  • Picnic Charcuterie
    • Meats: Salami, Turkey, Priscuotto,
    • Cheeses: Cheedar, Goat Cheese, Manchango, Swiss
    • Crackers: Gluten Free, Pretzel, Flavored
    • Nuts & Fruit: Almonds, Dried Cranberries, Grapes
    • Veggies & Dip: Carrots, Celery, Asparagus Tips, Peppers
  • Fried Chicken & Fixings
  • Grilling Food if you have access to a grill or bring a small grill with you (be sure to check fire restrictions in your area)
  • Drinks
  • Desserts
    • Apple Pie
    • Pumpkin Cookies
    • Carmel Cheesecake
    • Double Chocolate Cookie Bark
    • Carrot Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

4. Picnic Entertainment

  • Music Venue (We live very near Ravinia)
  • Lawn Games (Bags, Frisbee, Football)
  • Board Games (Chess, Backgammon, Candyland)
  • Water Sports (Floaties, Fishing Pole, floating lounge, life jackets)
  • Play List on Phone
  • Book, Newspaper, Magazine
  • Scavenger Hunt (leave, nuts, feather, rock)
  • Listen to a Podcast – Did you know that Emma and I have a Podcast. You can read about it HERE

5. Take it to the Next Level

  • Candelabra or lantern (battery operated candles is the best idea)
  • Champagne in a Wine Bucket with beautiful glassware
  • Linen tablecloth & napkins
  • Uber eats delivers a high end dinner
  • Romantic location; secluded beach or amazing view, place you met or went on a date
  • Ways to Travel: Boat, Bike, Rent a vintage car, Horseback, Limosine,
  • Make the adventure a surprise!

Picnics can be so much fun even if it is in your backyard and I have given you everything you need to have a fun fall picnic.

Picture taken of our backyard looking at our house with the blue sky in the background

Remember it doesn’t have to be lunch. While we typically think of picnics as a lunchtime ritual. It can be dinner or even bagels & cream cheese for breakfast. Just making time to enjoy the great outdoors is fun.

I hope I’ve provided you with everything you need to know to have a fun fall picnic. Get out there and enjoy this amazing fall weather.


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  1. Lynn this looks like a wonderful place to have a picnic! When I loved in Wisconsin I went to Ravenia all of the time! It is an amazing venue.

    I cannot wait to check out all of the links to the food, etc. I love picnics and picnic food!

    1. I don’t have links on all the food but it’s my goal to get there. Working on a few this weekend.

  2. This is amazing! I love it. It makes me want to pack up a picnic now. Hugs to you.

    1. Our weather is perfect for picnics. Now I need to figure out a way to ward off the bee’s!!!

  3. This puts me in the mood for a picnic! Years ago, our youngest and I used to go on picnics in the afternoons and we would read and read together. O, I miss those days so much! Thanks for stirring the memory for me! Pinned!

    1. I’m glad my little post could bring back fond memories for you!