Folks in Townshend are getting ready for the 25th Annual Pumpkin Festival, which will be held on Saturday, October 17. The Townshend Common is the site of the festival, which goes from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m and will be the site of fun for children and adults alike.
To remember all the details that must come together to create a day-long event takes the combined effort of many people.
The Pumpkin Festival was started in 1984 by the Townshend Business Association as a fall festival, where both adults and children could have a good time. Today the 35+ member and other Townshend residents assist the committee in providing an excellent fall event.
The festival has evolved into a fun-filled day with a well attended craft show for adults, and a pumpkin decorating contest and a Halloween costume parade for area youngsters.
A free pumpkin is given to each youngster to decorate and prize-ribbons are given for all the contests. A scarecrow decorating contest for all ages is also a favorite attraction and has produced some really scary scarecrows.
The craft show is always a big event and getting the word out to crafters in Southern Vermont is not an easy project. Different types of crafters are important so that the people viewing the Pumpkin Festival can enjoy the many different hand-made products and food for sale. In addition to crafts, artists are invited to offer their oil paintings, watercolors and other works of art. Vendors interested in selling at the festival can contact Harold Kvitek at 348-7913 or Walter Meyer at 365-4246.
In the past years the giant pumpkin contest has created a competition to see who can enter the largest locally grown pumpkin. A few entrants have produced 600 and 700 pound giants, which is really quite a large pumpkin. Besides seeing who has grown the largest pumpkin, there will be a weight guessing contest to guess the weigh of a giant pumpkin this year.
One of the projects of the Townshend Business Association for the Pumpkin Festival is the baking and sale of pumpkin pies on the big day. TBA members are persuaded to bake their share of the 120 pies usually sold. The preparation of the ingredients, getting the bakers and making sure we have boxes to package 120 pies can be quite a project. Pies are sold by-the-piece with whip cream or by-the-pie at the Pumpkin Festival.
There are free pony rides for youngsters, which are enjoyed by many of the younger attendees. Youngsters participating are nursery school, kindergarten and elementary school age.
The Pumpkin Festival is supported by donations from over 60 local businesses.