The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Pumpkin paradise


Katie Perttunen/Daily Globe

VENTRILOQUIST DAVE Parker entertained the crowd on Saturday at Bessemer’s 35th annual Pumkinfest. It was his 27th year performing.

BESSEMER — The 35th annual Pumpkinfest was held in Bessemer from Thursday to Sunday, beginning with spaghetti at the American Legion and ending with a roast beef and rotisserie chicken dinner at the VFW.

Thousands of people attended this year’s event, event co-chair Donna Frello said. “It went very well despite the weather.”

Saturday was jam-packed with activities for all ages, starting with a pumpkin pancake breakfast and including a craft fair, antique tractor display, children’s costume parade, a pie social, an open house at the Bessemer Historical Society, a ventriloquist, face painting and balloon art, as well as carnival rides and games.

Contests were held throughout the day, including a decorated pumpkin contest, a pumpkin seed spitting contest, pumpkin bingo, pumpkin bowling, sidewalk chalk art, horseshoes, a treasure hunt, and a pumpkin pie eating contest.

“The kids had a good time,” Annette Lillie, event co-chair said. The Saturday night teen dance had a good turnout.

The sidewalk chalk art contest, new this year, went very well, Frello said, with 18 participants.

High winds did not dampen spirits, although some vendors had to take down their tents or hold on to them to prevent them from blowing away. The power was out for about an hour in the afternoon, and Saturday night’s music was moved indoors due to rain.

Music was provided by the Washington School choir, BOMB SQUAD, the Gogebic Range Band, and the Hurley Banjo Boys.

“We can always use more volunteers,” said Lillie. This year more than 20 volunteers pitched in, but “it is a lot of hours in one weekend.”

Sunday’s roast beef and rotisserie chicken dinner was a success, said Frello, thanks to the volunteers in the kitchen, including Larry Miskovich, who was in charge of the chicken. A silent auction was held at the dinner.

The 50/50 raffle winner was Janine Saari, who won $1301.50.


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