9 Ways to Enjoy the Season this Fall

pumpkin on wood floor

Autumn has finally arrived! The trees are changing, the days are cooler, and we at the Fife and Drum Inn are looking forward to all the exciting events Williamsburg has to offer this season. 


Now that the weather is cooling down, it’s the perfect time head just up the road to Pumpkinville in Toano, VA. You can pick out the perfect pumpkin to spice up your home and check out the selection of fall-themes crafts and decorations. Corn mazes, games, and a hayride complete the perfect autumn outing- check it out now through October 28!

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For any William and Mary alumni out there, Homecoming is just around the corner! Join us here in Williamsburg October 18-21 for a weekend reunion, and for a personal and memorable trip, remember to stay at the Fife and Drum Inn.

If you’re in the mood for something a little spooky this October, there are several local events and surprises to last all season long. Start at Howl-O-Scream at Busch Gardens, a Halloween staple in Williamsburg. This year, this scary celebration marks its 20-year anniversary and a new Era of Terror. Filled with new shows, scare zones, and haunted houses, it’s a must-see!

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For a more historical Halloween scene, try a Ghost Walk in Colonial Williamsburg, or a haunted hayride at York River State Park on October 20, 26, and 27. Also check out Monsters, Mayhem, and Musick, a baroque concert series playing every Tuesday at the Governor’s Palace. These are great opportunities to experience a new side of history and are a fun way to see the area!


As the season of harvest and Thanksgiving approaches, there are a few great opportunities in the area to make this year extra special. The Virginia Thanksgiving Festival on November 4 kicks off the season with a day immersed in the history of the First English Thanksgiving, complete with food and dance.

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On Turkey day, Blue Talon Bistro’s annual Turkey Trot is a great way to start! It’s a time-honored tradition that supports local charity and brings people closer together. Finally, you can sit down to a beautiful Thanksgiving buffet at the Williamsburg Inn.

No matter how you choose to spend your fall season, it’s the people you spend it with that make it truly special. We hope that as the air gets colder, the company around you gets warmer.

Who will you be spending this season with? Leave a comment and let us know!

Brafferton Hall College of William and Mary

3 story brick building

Historic Williamsburg: Brafferton Hall College of William and Mary

The Brafferton Hall at the College of William and Mary is one of the three buildings that comprise the “Ancient Campus”. was built to educate Virginia Indians during the early 18th century. Funded by a bequest from Robert Boyle, the English scientist who discovered the circulation of blood, the Indian School was operated intermittently during the 18th century, without much success. One Indian chief is reputed to have complained of the education the boys received:

“When they came back to us, they were bad runners, ignorant of every means of living in the wood, unable to bear either cold or hunger. They were neither fit for hunters, warriors, nor councilors: they were totally good for nothing.”

Today the Brafferton houses the office of the President of the College. It is located to the left as you walk into Wren Yard (at the west end of the Duke of Gloucester Street). This area is known as the historic heart of the campus.  Of course the Fife and Drum Inn is conveniently located just one block to the north.

Lord Botetourt

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In front of the Brafferton, and in the center of Wren Yard is a statue of Lord Botetourt. The statue honors the popular 16th century governor of the colony of Virginia. Botetourt was actively involved in the academic life of the College of W&M and the colonial capital, he served as Rector of the Board of Visitors of the College. He was instrumental in establishing a fund to create two gold medals that would be awarded on an annual basis by the College for those that excelled in natural philosophy and classical learning.

The Brafferton

College of W & M

Lake Matoaka Amphitheater

W & M Admissions

Barnes & Noble Book Store

Barnes and Noble William and Mary Bookstore

William & Mary Bookstore with people around

William & Mary Bookstore: Barnes and Noble

This book store is the primary source of textbooks and supplies for students at the College of William and Mary. This well-stocked bookstore is just two blocks from The Fife and Drum Inn and is guaranteed not to disappoint even the most discriminate of book shoppers. Barnes and Noble has two floors that are stocked from floor to ceiling with books, stationary, magazines, CD’s, college souvenirs and memorabilia. There is even a Starbucks cafe on the second floor. The stores location on Duke of Gloucester and North Henry Streets makes for a convenient rest area after a morning or afternoon of touring the historic area or shopping in Merchants Square. As with all the downtown in Williamsburg there is free internet access.Trinkets and books specific to Williamsburg are available and worth the money to remind you of your time spent here in the Historic Triangle. As a side note the store has the only escalator in downtown Williamsburg.

William and Mary Adams Memorial Garden

garden with flowering plants

Adams Garden – College of William and Mary

The Adams Garden is a special secret garden in the heart of downtown Williamsburg. It’s a great place to relax and enjoy a contemplative moment on a busy day. Fun place to have a little picnic lunch when the weather is nice.

You can find the Adams Garden is next to Sorority Court at the corner of Richmond Road and N. Boundary Street. It was dedicated in November 1986 in memory of Gregory S. Adams, William and Mary College graduate class of ’81,   more than 200 donors have contributed to its’ creation.

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WATCH A Video On The Adams Garden in Downtown 

In addition to a great variety of azaleas, the garden also contains many tropical and semi-tropical plants, Approximately 5,000 different kinds of flowering bulbs are planted in the garden. Madelynn Watkinson is credited with the success of the garden; she started weeding it, as a volunteer, in 1986.

“We ask that this be hallowed ground, set aside from the wider College campus. We pray for your sons and daughters who will come home at the last, at the end of their days, to a place where they have been happy. We pray for all who will come home to be laid to rest here, as to our mother’s home once more, to the home of alma mater, the College of William and Mary.”

– Reverand John Maxwell Kerr, Episcopal Campus Minister Bruton Parish Church

I am some what embarrassed to say that I was not aware until recently that this memorial garden is also the final resting place for W&M alumni (and immediate family) that have requested their ashes be placed in the garden. There are plaques through out memorializing those that have made that choice.

For those eligible that would like to pre-plan interment arrangements more in formation is available on the William and Mary College site.