From the Cul de Sac: 10 Signs It’s Officially Fall in Temecula


It’s fall and, although the rest of the country is enjoying brisk weather, football games, leaves changing color, and pumpkin spiced everything, sometimes the ushering in of the new season is a little less apparent in Southern California.

Here in Temecula, however, there are a couple of telltale signs of autumn which are unique to our hometown and probably familiar to many of you and I’ve made up a list of a few of my favorites.

10 Ways to Tell It’s Fall in Temecula

  1. The morning temperatures have cooled down, slightly, and all the Moms at elementary school drop off have switched from flip flops to Ugg Boots. Much like Southern California itself, women’s shoes in Temecula seem to only have two seasons: summer and winter.
  2. To go with the Ugg Boots, the official mom wardrobe essential – the yoga pant – goes from knee length to ankle, in order to truck into said winter footwear.
  3. Men are still wearing shorts and flip flops, but they’ve added a grey Quicksilver hoodie and the logo of their baseball cap has changed from Padres and Dodgers to Chargers, Raiders and Rams.
  4. The frozen yogurt places now have pumpkin flavor, with candy corn as a topping.
  5. It’s vineyard harvest time in wine country and the wineries are holding their annual Grape Stomps; which are festivals where you, too, can stomp ‘til your toes are purple.
  6. It’s the “big” TVSA soccer season; the one with the larger fields and way more teams than willing coaches.
  7. There’s colorful fall décor tacked to the walls and hanging from the ceiling at Richie’s Diner and the pine tree in the courtyard outside Taos Territorial Traders in Old Town is draped in garlands of orange, yellow and red. Who says decorating trees is just for Christmas? Speaking of which…
  8. September always means the start of Christmas in the liquor section of Albertson’s on Temecula Parkway. (Side Note: I asked an employee about this last year. Apparently they are a “training” store, teaching the correct decorating procedures for the holidays. Staff from other Albertson’s locations actually come by to learn how to deck their own halls.)
  9. Most of the local breweries have some sort of seasonal specialty like Oktoberfest, hard apple cider or pumpkin ale. Look out for Aftershock Brewery’s ice cream float nights because their pumpkin beer goes great with a scoop of French vanilla.
  10. The popular corn maze at Big Horse Feed and Pelzer Pumpkin Farm both open for business which, if you visit both, you will experience corn mazes, pig races, face painting, hay rides, pie eating contests, bounce houses and many other family-friendly activities. And don’t forget to pick up the perfect pumpkin.

So, it may still be 90 degrees out and inexplicably humid, but there are still ways to tell that autumn has arrived in the Temecula Valley; albeit some of them are a bit unconventional. You just have to take a moment to look around.

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Holly Herndon

Holly Herndon

Holly has been covering arts & entertainment in the Temecula Valley for as long as she has been a part of the community. She loves San Diego sports almost as much as she loves her family.

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