Autumn in Northern California

This should be a pretty brief section of my web site. Many of our fall activities were too similar to last year’s to be worth describing. But there were a few notable events worth mentioning.


After asking around a bit, I found out that there is an excellent Oktoberfest celebration right here in Marin. There’s a chapter of the German-based international Die Naturfreunde on Mt. Tamalpais and they have an all day celebration for Oktoberfest. We had to hike about a mile along the Sun Trail to get to the German Tourist Club, but it was a beautiful day and an easy hike there. It’s a beautiful building overlooking a valley and surrounded by forest.

German Tourist Club

We ate some great food and there was an authentic German oompah band playing a variety of polkas. Many people went out to take a turn around the dance floor, but there’s nothing like the Chicken Dance to bring EVERYONE out for a dance. The dance floor is actually a deck that hangs over the side of the mountain and is supported by a few braces that go from the underside of the deck into the ground far below. As hundreds of people stomped their feet in time with the dance, Steve and I couldn’t help but wonder when it was last inspected and picture the whole thing giving under the weight of the dancers. But we couldn’t let that get in our way and enjoyed the dancing nonetheless.

Anne doing the chicken dance

Anne doing the chicken dance

Anne doing the chicken dance

Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival

Once again last fall, Steve and I drove down to Half Moon Bay to eat our fill of pumpkin bread, pumpkin ice cream, and pumpkin cookies at the Pumpkin Festival. It’s quite a lot of fun browsing the artists’ booths and seeing the award winning heaviest pumpkin. And we are always amazed by the talents of the pumpkin carving artist Farmer Mike.

Farmer Mike at Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival

And here I am happily resting my feet and finishing off my cup of pumpkin ice cream.

Anne at the Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival

ILM Halloween Party

There’s really not much to say about the ILM Halloween Party from last fall. This year, the powers-that-be decided to distribute drink tickets to everyone at the door. Everyone received 2 tickets for alcoholic beverages. I suppose this was an attempt to control people’s intake, but I don’t imagine it had the desired affect. Let’s face it. Not everyone who received a ticket used it and they probably gave it away to someone who did. And then there were those (me) who just brought their own mixers in little bottles to use in the soda that came free of charge. Honestly, though, there wasn’t anything very exciting about this year’s party and no costumes really stick out in my mind. Steve and I had fun, though, and looked pretty good re-enacting The Devil Went Down to Georgia.

Anne and Steve at the ILM Halloween Party