As the heat of the summer season fades into the crisp, cool days of fall, it's time to make plans for fall family fun. See how many items you can check off this list before the icy chill of winter descends upon us.

1. Create a fall sensory bin. Add items like leaves, twigs and small gourds (many of which you can collect from nature) to reflect the fall harvest.

2. Make homemade playdough. Cinnamon or pumpkin pie scents are perfect for the season.

3. Wade in a creek. It's too cold to swim, but still warm enough to get a little wet.

4. Make your own scarecrow. You may need to buy the hay, but you can dress your scarecrow in old clothes you find around the house.

5. Make hot apple cider. If you keep apple juice on hand, this one is a cinch. Just heat it on the stove, serve it in a fancy mug and add a cinnamon stick as the final touch.

6. Read fall-themed books from your local library. They're easy to spot because they are probably on display.

7. Take advantage of fall-themed programs at your local library. These are almost always FREE.

8. Visit the pumpkin patch. Pick out your favorite pumpkins and find your way through the straw or corn maze.

9. Take a nature hike. Hiking is a great activity for families if you follow a few simple rules.

10. Plan an outdoor scavenger hunt. Divide into teams and search for special fall finds like pine cones, orange leaves, sticks and even bugs.

11. Do a nature craft. Use the items you collected during your scavenger hunt or hike to create something spectacular. This Kid's Crafts - Natural Materials Pinterest Board is full of inspiration.

12. Go apple picking. Even though you will probably have to pay for the apples you pick, they will cost less — and taste better — than what you get a the store.

13. Make caramel apples. Because you have to do something with all those apples, right?

14. Or caramel apple nachos. For a fun change of pace.

15. Or whip out the crockpot and teach the kids how to make homemade applesauce.

16. Pack a picnic. Empty out the contents of your fridge and spend a lazy day on a blanket at the park. Be sure to bring kites, soccer balls and bubbles.

17. Enjoy a high school football game. Can't afford NFL tickets? Take the kids to see a game at the local high school. Many are free, especially at the Freshman or JV level. Little League baseball games can be fun to attend as well.

18. Visit a local farm. Many farmers are happy to give tours, and some will even let kids learn how to milk a cow.

19. Take advantage of free fall festivals. Festivals are popular this time of year because of the gorgeous weather. There are sure to be some free ones in your area.

20. Ride bikes. It's not too cold yet, so take a family bike ride and enjoy all of the fall foliage while you still can.

How do you enjoy fall as a family without spending money?