PUMPKINTOWN — With more than 160 arts and craft vendors, a ridiculous amount of food and all the bluegrass and gospel music a person could ever want, forget Clemson playing Georgia Tech. The place to be this Saturday is the Pumpkin Festival.
“It’s the 37th year for the festival,” said Bob Flowers, president for the Pumpkintown Community Club and promoter of the festival. “So that’s something to be proud of. We took it (the festival) over about 10 years ago from Buddy Cox after we moved up here from Charleston. My wife (Susie Flowers) became the festival chairperson.”
According to Flowers, the festival has grown quite a bit just over the past decade alone.
“The vendor numbers have risen quite a bit,” said Flowers. “We are at about 165 now for this year’s and I would say in past years we would have maybe 120.”
Other aspects of the festival have been added to throughout the years as well.
“We’ll have children’s rides, the parade, and a greased pole.”
Wait, a what?
“A greased pole,” laughed Flowers. “We have a tree that we grease all up with Vaseline and then people try to climb it. There’s a flag at the top.”
One of the most anticipated events during the festival is the quilt raffle.
“This year’s quilt was designed and sewed by my wife,” said Flowers. “It’s what’s called a T-shirt quilt. She took about 25 T-shirts from the former festivals and made them into a quilt.”
Raffle tickets for a chance at the quilt are $1 each or six for $5.
The Pumpkintown festival is unique to the area in that it is put on by the community for the community.
“Everything has to be handmade or homemade,” said Flowers. “We don’t allow any commercial stuff. We’ll have hamburgers and hot dogs, homemade ice cream, just about anything you can imagine food wise. And there will be music all day and cloggers and it’s just good wholesome fun.”
When asked if the rainy weather would affect the festival, Flowers was hopeful.
“We don’t have a rain date, but we’ve been lucky in previous years,” he said. “Last year we had a good little sprinkle about 3 in the afternoon but it didn’t last very long. We still had good crowds and I think we will this year too.”
The festival is free and while service animals are welcome, festival goers are asked to leave their pets safely at home.
The 37th annual Pumpkin Festival is Oct. 10 and runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 5301 Dacusville Highway. The parade begins at 9 a.m. in front of the fire station on Wilma Lane.
Reach Kasie Strickland at 864-855-0355.