The weather is cooling down but there are still plenty of opportunities to get your family outside and active together. As a Together Counts™ partner, our passion is helping families to be the healthiest they can be. Fall is harvest time in many parts of the country. This means your local farms will be filled with fresh fruits waiting to be picked by you and your loved ones.
This October, celebrate National Apple Month with a quintessential fall time activity: apple picking. Grab your friends and family and spend the day at a local apple orchard picking fresh, local apples. If you’re not sure where the closest orchard is, try going online and searching for the closest orchard to your home. It is best to call ahead of time to confirm their hours and check that their apples are ripe and ready for picking. To make this outing educational, buff up on your apple knowledge with these fun trivia facts to share with your family during the drive.
Did you know that…?
- Americans eat about 120 apples per-person each year
- Apples are nutritious because they contain fiber, vitamins C, and A, potassium and antioxidants
- There are about 2,500 known varieties grown in the United States
- 36 states grow apples with Washington, New York, Michigan, California, Pennsylvania and Virginia being the top producers
- Apples don’t require peeling! Try eating the skin because it’s packed with nutrients
Here are some tips to guarantee you pick the best apples possible:
- Many orchards have “dwarf trees” which are smaller trees perfect for little ones wanting to pick their own apples. Check when you arrive where these trees are and head in that direction if you have smaller children
- Select apples that are free of bruises or soft spots. A firm apple is a good apple
- Once apples are picked from the tree they stop ripening. To get the ripest apples, start on the outside of the tree on the side that faces the sunlight. Ripe apples will easily separate from the tree with a gentle twist
- Gently place apples in a basket to avoid bruising
- Wash the apples right before you plan to use them to avoid spoilage
If you don’t have an apple farm nearby, you can still participate in the fun! Visit the supermarket and select a variety of apples to host your own family apple taste test. Download this apple taste test guide to find out what variety your family likes best.
After all these apples festivities, of course you need to have a healthy recipe on hand to bake up all the delicious fruits that you find. Check out this recipe for homemade applesauce that is absolutely delicious and makes your entire house smell amazing. Try serving on whole grain English muffins or with frozen yogurt for dessert. Your whole family will love it!
The OrganWise Guys Inc. began in 1993 with a vision to inspire individuals to take charge of their health by assuming personal responsibility for their choices. By bringing the body to life via lovable organ characters, kids of all ages learn what it really means to be smart from the inside out.
For more fall favorites, check out these articles from Together Counts: