The fall equinox (or autumnal equinox) falls on September 22nd or 23rd each year. The autumnal equinox is a time during the year when the earth’s tilt sits at an angle perpendicular to the sun, making sunrise and sunset almost exactly 12 hours apart. This configuration of earth and sun often marked the end of summer for ancient cultures.
You can celebrate fall equinox and send summer off with the perfect celebration. It’s a wonderful way to ring in the final months of the year and practice gratitude for everything up to this point. Plus, we love any excuse to host a party and spend time with friends. Here’s everything you need to know about planning an autumn equinox party.
Serve Apple Everything
Fall equinox takes place right in the middle of apple season. Which means you need some seriously yummy apple recipes for your autumnal equinox celebration.
- Smooth apple drinks are a must.
- A warm apple crisp is comforting for all your guests.
- Classic apple martinis brighten the celebration.
- Apple dumplings make a fun finger food.
- Apple cider mocktails are fun for every guest.
- Candied apples are a nostalgic dessert choice.
- Apples served with gouda cheese and a drizzle of honey make a lovely appetizer.
- Apple slices go well with sweet fruit or dessert dips.
Embrace Harvest-Time Produce
The produce that peaks in that sweet spot between summer and autumn makes for some of the best dishes. Get inspired by late summer and early fall produce for your fall equinox celebration. Don't worry, these are fruits and vegetables everyone will be excited to eat!
- Peaches are still in season, and everyone can enjoy a sweet peach mocktail.
- With artichokes and spinach in season during the fall equinox, it only makes sense to serve a spinach artichoke dip at your party.
- Root vegetables like carrots are comfort foods turned into dinner party foods with these root vegetable recipes.
- A fall-themed charcuterie board features other autumn delights like figs, pumpkin butter, and pears.
Add Wine to Your Fall Equinox Menu
You may have planned on serving wine at your party anyway, but for a fall equinox celebration, this menu item actually holds some significance. The harvest moon during this time is often referred to as the wine moon, which means your wine selection is also a nod to the season.
You can also enjoy a fall sangria, which is the perfect way to drink wine.
Bring Out the Beer
If your guest list is more of a beer crowd than a wine crowd, don't worry. Beer is also a traditional drink for a fall equinox celebration. Because it's made with hops, barley, and wheat — grains harvested in late summer and early fall — the casual party beverage is right on theme.
Hibiscus Cider Is a Seasonal Delight
If you're hosting a dry fall equinox celebration, this drink is delicious and still adds ounces of fun to your party. Hibiscus cider is an autumnal mocktail that feels as fancy as your favorite mixed drink, and it's bursting with bold flavor. We think this fall hibiscus cider recipe from My Tiny Laguna Kitchen sounds divine.
Moon Spell Cookies Help You Celebrate
Use Warm Colors in Your Decor
You can stick to simple details for this autumnal equinox party. The key is to include the warm colors of fall in your decor to really drive home your theme. You can do this in your place settings, table linens, hanging decor, and your fall flower arrangements.
Choose a Stunning Centerpiece for Your Table
Your autumn equinox is centered around delicious food and a group of beloved friends. So, your dining table is party central. That means your table centerpiece needs to be a showstopper. Try some of these seasonal centerpieces to tie your table into the rest of your party decor.
- A cornucopia gives a nod to the coming harvest that's often celebrated during autumn equinox.
- A large garland of dried flowers looks elegant and adds lovely texture to your display.
- A collection of colorful pumpkins is perfect for a fall celebration.
- Vintage items like candlesticks, drink pitchers, and cake stands create a cohesive and collected look.
- A beautiful dessert or grazing board doubles as a striking centerpiece on your table.
Make Your Own Dried Fruit Garland
With all the sweet fruits coming into season during fall equinox, it only makes sense to include them in your party decor. If you make your own dried fruit garland, you'll have a seasonal DIY decoration that lasts until you're ready to decorate for Halloween. This dried orange garland from Hearth and Vine is giving us all the autumn equinox vibes.
Curate a Cozy Evening With Candles
You have the food and all the decor. Now you need ambiance. Your dreamy fall equinox party wouldn’t be complete without moody candles to create the cozy atmosphere you’re looking for. Using deep, dark-colored candles will tie in your fall colors and add some of the mystery that comes with the changing seasons. Rich reds, dark purples, and moody blacks are all charming choices for your party candles.
Give Thanks in a Traditional Autumn Equinox Ceremony
Giving thanks was always a large component of fall equinox celebrations, so you might decide to incorporate a traditional ceremony into your party. Here's how you can practice giving thanks with your guests.
- Have everyone stand in a circle of thanksgiving and join hands.
- As everyone faces north, give thanks for your homes, health, and prosperity.
- Turn toward the east and give thanks for wisdom and knowledge gained in the past year.
- Face south as you give thanks for success.
- Finally, face west to give thanks for the spiritual growth you've experienced throughout the year.
Party With Positivity
No matter how laid back or formal your autumn equinox party is, what matters most is your perspective. This is a time to practice gratitude and look toward the coming year with hope and positivity. Doing so is made easier by the presence of friends and family, so invite the people who impact your life throughout the year.