Smell the pumpkin spice

Illustration by ISAAC GALAN | The Ranger


Student Reporter

The beginning of autumn ushers in more than cooler weather. In recent years, a harvest of fun fall festivities, food, drinks and events give the season more variety than ever. Fall has grown into a three month festival of fun activities and food that ends with Thanksgiving. 

For some students, fall brings much-appreciated cooler weather. Jeff Sanchez, a mass media major, said he welcomes “a chance to mix up your fashion and wear sweaters and turtlenecks.” He said he likes the way fall brings out more flannel, plaid and hoodies and sweatshirts. “Even though it’s warmer here than most places, fall brings cooler temperatures and more clothing options. I like options.” 

For others, cooler fall weather means pumpkin patches and hot coffee with grandparents. Maria Perez, a nursing major, said she looks forward to fall because it means coffee talk with her grandmother. Perez said, “The fall means I can go shopping for pumpkins in the pumpkin patches, because the weather is much nicer.”

Elizabeth Byrd, a 2021 AC occupational therapy graduate, said she has fond memories of autumn at the college. “Fall reminds me of drinking coffee in the AC coffee shop and watching the leaves turn while I study.” 

Commercially, fall ushers in pumpkin spice as its mascot. Retailers are rolling out fall harvest scents and flavors earlier and earlier each year. The fall season stretches from September to November with pumpkin spice sprinkled in just about everything from Jello to coffee creamer. Cheerios, pumpkin pie caramel syrup, Pillsbury spice rolls, pumpkin pie gelato and pumpkin spice English muffins, are just some of the food and drink items out this season. Body wash and deodorants have gotten in on the fall harvest commerce and even pumpkin spice beer has arrived. 

Fall has grown to be called the pumpkin spice industrial complex. The consumer cloud of allspice, cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg has grown to $278.5 million according to Nielson, up 11% from last year. Fall is no longer a bag of candy corn and a couple of cinnamon candles, it’s a multimillion dollar cash cow of spices. 

For others, fall means that Halloween is just around the corner. Halloween parties and events are the best part of fall, according to C.J Scott, a screenwriting major. “I love scary movies and dressing up for Halloween,” she said. “I start planning my Halloween in September. Halloween is definitely my favorite time of year.” 

Perez said she appreciates fall weather, food and traditions. “Fall means you can enjoy sitting on a patio and have fun with friends.” The leaves might change and the temperature may drop, but the pumpkin spice industrial complex ushers in good vibes.

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