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Your A-Z guide to family days out in Norfolk this autumn

PUBLISHED: 07:00 18 September 2012

Get out in the great outdoors this autumn.

Get out in the great outdoors this autumn.

©NTPL/John Millar

Summer may have gone but there are still many things you can do throughout autumn with your family. In the first part of our A to Z guide Emma Harrowing takes a look at everything from making apple juice to creating crafty items.

Apples are in season so why not make your own apple juice? All you need is an apple press which you can buy from retailers such as Lakeland on St Stephens and lots of Norfolk apples. If this seems like hard work why not learn how the experts do it at the Spotlight on Norfolk Apple Juice in The Deli at Jarrold on Saturday, September 29 from 11am until 3pm. Norfolk Apple Juice is a family-run fruit farm in Ashill which produces a range of apple juice from its own apples. The event is part of the EDP Adnams Norfolk Food Festival this month.

Be brave. Autumn signifies Halloween and there are some spooky goings-on near Wroxham this October. Bewilderwood will be ending its season with spooky fun where families dress up in fancy dress, can make their own masks and lanterns and join in the end-of-day lantern parade. Snagglefang’s Spooky Spectacular takes place from Saturday, October 27 until Sunday, November 4.

Cycle. Get on yer bike and enjoy the county on two wheels. Blicking Hall is one of many places you and your family can hire a bike and take in the Norfolk countryside. Or if you have your own bikes why not ride the Marriott’s Way on Sunday afternoon?

Dancing. Swing dancing is increasing in popularity in Norwich as vintage style gathers momentum. Learn the moves and keep fit at the same time at Keir Hardy Hall on St Gregory’s Alley every Monday evening. Beginners classes for all ages start at 7.45pm and you don’t have to bring a partner. Entry costs £5.

Embrace the fresh air by taking a walk. The Great British Walk, run by the National Trust from now until November 4, encourages all the family to get out and enjoy the countryside whether you want to take a jolly ramble or take a gamble on a big challenge. Download the National Trust walking guide at nationaltrust.org.uk and don’t forget that you can cut-out and keep a map of a walk every Friday in your Evening News.

Feast on food produced in Norfolk this autumn by going to some of the many foody events taking place across the region as part of the EDP Adnams Norfolk Food Festival. From family fun days to cookery demonstrations to specially selected Norfolk produced meals there is something to keep you amused over the next month. Find out more at norfolkfoodfestival.co.uk

Get crafty and learn a new skill. Make Place on Magdalen Street offers a range of courses throughout autumn such as a beginners’ crochet workshop. Learn how to hold the yarn and crochet hook and how to make simple pieces including a flower corsage. The sessions cost £15 and take place on Saturday September 1, Wednesday, September 26 and Saturday, October 13 at 1.30pm. Visit makeplacenorwich.co.uk

Heritage events can not only educate the whole family about the history of our fine city, they can also be a lot of fun. Every second Sunday of the month Dragon Hall on King Street hosts a Family fun day filled with activities for all the family, usually based around a theme. The next event takes place on Sunday, October 14 from midday until 4pm.

Investigate a new side of Norfolk by train. There are a number of rail lines to choose from such as the Bure Valley Railway, the North Norfolk Railway, the Wherry Line and the Bittern Line which will take you on a journey to different parts of the county. The Bittern Line, for example, takes you from Norwich through to the historical Felbrigg Hall, to catching crabs in Cromer, to seeing and even adopting the horses at The Hillside Animal and Shire Horse Sanctuary in West Runton to the steam trains in Sheringham.

Jump in and swim at a family swimming session. New adult and child lessons for children up to three years old have recently been introduced at the Riverside Leisure Centre and Sportspark offers parent and toddler classes and a family swim ticket for £13.40 and under fives swim for free.

Kick back and watch an old time movie at Cinema City when it is raining outside. The cinema is currently showing classic Hitchcock films with The Lady Vanishes on Sunday, September 16 at 5pm finishing the season. It also has child-friendly sessions and caters for autistic children with special showings such as Dr. Seuss’s The Lorax, which is on Sunday, October 7 at 11am.

Look out for berries and birds. The changing season is a great time to discover nature in Norfolk’s woods. Autumn is a great time to look for fungi which can be found growing on the ground, on dead branches and twigs and on trees. You might also hear a woodpecker if you listen hard enough. Why not venture to Mousehold and draw all the things you see to create an autumn collage?

Make things and get creative with Life Matters’ kids creative columnist and mum of two Holly James. Holly’s Doodle workshops in Costessey starts her new workshops from September 27 at The Costessey Centre on Long Water Lane. The next workshop is all about making things with boxes from robots to chugging steam engines. For more information visit doodles4kids.co.uk and check out Holly’s craft videos in the family section.

For more inspirational things to do with your family this autumn check out the Life Matters pages in tomorrow’s Evening News where we will be discovering the fun side of Norfolk from the letters N to Z.

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