This weekend brings Harvest Fest, Gorge Fruit Fair

Hood River Harvest Fest happens this weekend.

Photo by Kirby Neumann-Rea
Hood River Harvest Fest happens this weekend.

Tents cover most of the grounds at Hood River Harvest Fest, so the forecasted rainy weather will only slightly dampen one of the community’s biggest events.

Head to the mid valley for more events this weekend, with the Gorge Fruit and Craft Fair, Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with everything fully under cover. The free event is at Hood River County Fairgrounds.

In addition, fruit stands throughout the valley are open with U-pick fruit or pears, apples and plums and other produce ready in bins for selection.

Local bands provide music throughout the weekend as Harvest Festival returns to the waterfront Event Site, Oct. 14 from 1-6 p.m., Oct. 15 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Oct. 16 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Hood River County Chamber of Commerce and lead sponsor Pacific Power present what is billed as “an old fashioned fall festival” that brings together more than 125 vendors offering local produce and food products, plus arts and crafts, wine, cider and beer tastings.

New for Harvest Fest 2016 is an expanded Full Sail Brewing entertainment tent, with local musical acts performing throughout the festival. Look for beer, hard cider and wine on tap; proceeds will benefit The Arc of the Mid-Columbia.

Festival-goers can load up on boxes of Hood River favorites, including fresh pears, apples, pumpkins, berries and flowers, and a wide variety of local foods from pies and jams to smoked salmon and chocolate-covered cherries. Hood River Valley Harvest Fest is also a great place to get a jump-start on holiday shopping, thanks to numerous local artisans.

Youngsters will love the kids’ activity area, complete with bouncy houses, face painting and other activities, including a petting zoo from the local 4-H club. They can also watch world-record giant pumpkin carver Scott Cully craft detailed designs into a 600-pound pumpkin. All festival-goers ages 15 and up are invited to take part in the popular pie eating contests on Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. Pacific Power, along with their mascot, Slim, will have “bucket rides” on the Pacific Power Truck throughout the day on Saturday.

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