Autumn Is Upon Us

By Karen Morrissette , The Montanian


September 22 this year marks the beginning of autumn, or fall, as we tend to call it in the U.S. In the northern hemisphere, this coincides with Autumnal Equinox, when the sun’s center passes the celestial equator going south. For the Southern Hemisphere, it marks the beginning of spring. At this point in the north, the days become shorter than the nights as the sun both rises earlier and sets earlier during the day. The word Equinox comes from the Latin words aequus, meaning equal, and nox, meaning night.

The full moon that occurs closest to Autumnal Equinox is referred to as the Harvest Moon. In ancient times, the extra light from this moon allowed farmers a little extra time to bring in their harvests before the frost set in. Celebrations of the Autumnal Equinox were originally associated with the goddess Demeter, goddess of agriculture, as well as the cycle of life and death, and often just referred to as Harvest. The word autumn originally comes from Latin and came into use during the Renaissance as new ideas and the growth of city-states took emphasis away from agriculture. The uniquely English use of the word fall, assumed by many to refer to the leaves that fall during the season, began during the 1500’s but only survived with settlers that migrated to North America. That use has long since died out in Europe.

Halloween, Rosh Hoshana – Jewish New Year, the Chinese Moon Festival, and Diwali – Hindu Festival of Lights, are all associated with autumn. For many, fall is a favorite time of year. The temperatures cool, tree leaves change to brilliant hues, and the frenetic activity of summer settles back down to the familiar routines of school, work, and family. Autumn is upon us. Enjoy it.

Your Bucket List For Autumn

  • Take a fall Drive
  • Jump in a pile of leaves
  • Go apple picking
  • Visit a pumpkin patch
  • Make caramel apples
  • Go for a nature walk
  • Drink apple cider
  • Have a bonfire
  • Male apple crisp
  • Bake a pumpkin pie
  • Roast pumpkin seeds
  • Make a new soup
  • Decorate the house for fall
  • Watch a football game
  • Make smores
  • Carve pumpkins
  • Watch a Halloween


  • Go on a hayride
  • Host a friendsgiving
  • Have a pumpkin drink
  • Write a thankful list
  • Take a family picture
  • Go to a fall festival
  • Burn a fall scented candle
  • Make homemade trail mix
  • Go thru a corn Maze
  • Wear fuzzy socks

Troy’s Annual Apple Festival

Submitted by Troy’s Farmers Market



Troy’s annual Apple Festival will be taking place on Friday, September 30th from 2 to 6:30 p.m. on the Troy Museum Grounds at 629 E. Missoula Ave (Hwy 2).

The Troy Farmers Market is hosting the festival as a celebration of our rich history of apple growing and our wild friends, the bears. This market will feature an expanded farmers market with many local vendors, kids activities hosted by Zero to Five Kids Corner, bear aware education, an apple pie contest, free apple cider pressing, and so much more. Plus, as an additional treat Jay Snow & the Tone Keepers will be performing from 3 to 6 p.m. This is an event you do not want to miss.

DPHHS Urges Montanans

to be Fall Aware

Submitted by Montana DPHHS


Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) officials report that nearly one in three Montanans aged 65 and older have reported falling at least once in the last 12 months.

“Falling is not a normal part of aging, but knowing a person’s risk factors can reduce the chance of an unintentional fall.” DPHHS Falls Prevention Program Manager Melissa Dale said. “As a person ages, they are at an increased risk for falling and sustaining an injury.”

National Falls Prevention Week is September 18-24.

Dale notes that almost half (48%) of the falls among Montanans aged 55 and over are from a slip, trip, or stumble from the ground level. In fact, over 1,900 Montanans were hospitalized due to unintentional falls in 2021.

Many falls are preventable through proactive steps. These steps include:

  • Find a good balance and exercise program. Look to build balance, strength, and flexibility.
  • Talk to your healthcare provider. Ask for an assessment of your risk of falling.
  • Regularly review your medications with your doctor or pharmacist. Make sure side effects aren’t increasing your risk of falling.
  • Get your vision and hearing checked annually. Your eyes and ears are key to keeping you on your feet.
  • Keep your home safe. Remove tripping hazards, increase lighting, make stairs safe, and install grab bars in key areas.
  • Talk to your family members. Enlist their support in taking simple steps to stay safe. Falls are not just a seniors’ issue.

Dale states that more than half of all falls occur at home, but this can be reduced by making a few safety modifications and through practical lifestyle changes. “Older adults need to be aware of what activities may put them at risk,” she said.

The National Council on Aging (NCOA) and DPHHS have partnered to bring awareness to older Montanans to learn about their falls risk.

The NCOA has a free, falls risk assessment tool, Falls Free Check-Up at The Falls Free Check-Up is an easy-to-use questionnaire. Upon completion of the 12 questions, the risk assessment is provided. The more risk factors calculated, the higher chance an individual has of falling.