12 Fall-Inspired Design, Catering, and Activation Ideas From Past Events

As temperatures begin to drop, we're dreaming up inspiration for fall with a look back at 12 festive event design, catering, and activation ideas sure to spice up the season’s soirees.

Pumpkin Rice Krispies Treats/Blue Plate Catering

Fall officially kicked off last week on Sept. 22—the season of rich-colored foliage, spooky decor, and pumpkin-spiced, well, everything. To celebrate, we're throwing it back to inspiration-filled fall design moments featuring Instagram-worthy event design, crafty catering concepts, and creative activations from brands such as Target, Capital One, and Ocean Spray. Summer 2020, we bid you adieu.

1. Earl's Kitchen & Bar's Cabin Fever Cocktail
At Vancouver-based chain Earl's Kitchen & Bar, which boasts locations in Chicago and Virginia, fall-focused guests can order the pinecone-adorned Cabin Fever cocktail. Identified as a "spicy, smoky whiskey sour," the drink is made of Crown Royal, port, ginger and pineapple syrups, fresh lemon juice, and bitters. (Photo: Courtesy of Earl's Kitchen & Bar)

2. Home Base Veterans Dinner
For Home Base Program’s Veterans Dinner, held at Boston’s John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in November 2019, Tyger Event Design and Production focused on seasonal autumnal tones such as grays, burgundy, gold, and wood for the design. Floor-to-ceiling fringe drape in charcoal gray transformed the space, offering an interesting backdrop for the evening. (Photo: Photo: Courtesy of Tyger Event Design and Production)

3. Pumpkin Rice Krispies Treats
For a fun fall-theme catering idea, Blue Plate in Chicago can create Rice Krispies treats in the shape of pumpkins. A pretzel serves as the stem. (Photo: Photo: Courtesy of Blue Plate Catering)

4. "Candy Corn" Strawberries
Blue Plate can also cover strawberries with frosting that evokes candy corn for any fall-theme event. (Photo: Courtesy of Blue Plate Catering)

5. Sculptz Legwear and Shapewear Collection Preview
For a hosiery preview party in New York in 2009, the Susan Magrino Agency recreated fall in a city park by using a bench, dried leaves, a lamppost, and a seasonally dressed model. (Photo: BizBash)

6. Hive's 1983 Airstream
Hive converted a 1983 Airstream trailer into a full bar to provide a craft cocktail experience at events. Autumnal beverages on offer could include the Sage Brown Derby (rye whiskey, fresh grapefruit juice, fresh lime juice, agave syrup, bitters, and fresh sage leaf) or the Cranberry Caipirinha (Aquavit, cranberry simple syrup, and fresh lime juice). Event organizers can work with partners Graham H. McKissock and Lance Davis to create drinks that tie into an event’s theme while using seasonal ingredients and local spirits. (Photo: Courtesy of Hive)

7. Children's Aid Foundation Teddy Bear Affair
For the 25th anniversary of the Teddy Bear Affair in 2011, harvest vegetables from Ontario provided decor in the autumn area of the cocktail reception at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. (Photo: Nick Turchiaro)

8. Target Tricked Out Treat Maze
Target hosted a family-friendly Halloween event in Los Angeles in October 2017 that included a digital scavenger hunt, a piano made from pumpkins, and an interactive corn maze. The David Stark-produced event featured a giant door adorned with the Target bullseye made from a collection of gourds. Guests rang the doorbell to begin their journey through the maze. (Photo: Courtesy of Target)

9. Target Tricked Out Treat Maze
A jack-o-lantern made from hundreds of smaller pumpkins created another fun photo op. (Photo: Courtesy of Target)

10. Ocean Spray's 85th Anniversary
While a cranberry bog isn't a floor in the traditional sense, it still made quite a statement at Ocean Spray's 85th anniversary in New York. Food editors and bloggers were invited to a Thanksgiving meal that took place inside a bog filled with 900,000 cranberries and 21,000 gallons of water. (Photo: Nilaya Sabnis for Tyger Productions)

11. Capital One Cider Tree at New York City Wine & Food Festival 2018
Capital One, the presenting sponsor of the 2018 New York City Wine & Food Festival, hosted a fall-theme activation at the Grand Tasting. Guests could participate in a complimentary cider tasting, drink custom cocktails, and pose for photos in an apple orchard-theme photo booth. The activation was produced by IMG Live. (Photo: Rob Kim)

12. Smashing Pumpkins Cocktail
As a tribute to the season and the rock band, spirits brand Ron Barceló debuted a cocktail called Smashing Pumpkins. The simple drink combines Ron Barceló añejo, allspice, pumpkin puree, and a sprinkle of nutmeg. (Photo: Courtesy of Ron Barceló)

This story was originally published on Connect's sister site BizBash.com here