By Jeffrey Anderson, Caitlyn Belson, & Sabrina Vang
When you think of fall festivals, you think of pretty fall colors, pumpkins, and even horse carriage rides. Green Bay’s Fall Festival has all that and more. Fall Festival is a family-friendly event that occurs in the Broadway District of downtown Green Bay. The event occurred this past Saturday, October 9.
With COVID-19 affecting the festival heavily last year, this year’s event was expanded to include more events, booths, and greater attendance numbers. Casey Ponchaud, a Special Events Manager on Broadway, said, “This year, the festival had a bouncy house and baby goats that were not there in previous years. Ponchaud added, “It’s nice to have a friendly family event that brings everyone to the business downtown.” Ponchaud said, “My favorite thing at the festival has to be the wagon ride… It’s such good fun, especially for the kids.”
The main event was the business trick or treating, a staple of the event. For this event, kids dressed up in their Halloween costumes and went to each business booth to get candy.
The kids grab a map to know what businesses are participating in the trick-or-treating activity. Then, they start trick or treating at any business booth on the map. At each stop, the kids received a stamp from each business to show they were at their booth. This map gets turned in at the end of their trick or treating, which enters their name into a drawing for a $25 gift card to Broadway businesses.
Kalyn Neal, who attended the event with her six-year-old daughter, says, “Many businesses ran out of candy early, but the games are what saved them. The games [and activities] were throwing a ball at ghost cups, throwing rings at pumpkins, rolling a pumpkin at toilet paper, henna, and a bouncy house.” While trick-or-treating, participants could also be found by the tricky and sneaky Halloween music played by the organizers of the event or listening to different spooky Halloween kids’ stories being read by librarians.
Scarecrows were seen strung around the venue on trees, each made by a Broadway business in which those interested can vote online for their favorite from October 9 until October 30. The winning scarecrow will be announced on Broadway Inc’s Facebook page on Halloween, where one lucky voter will win a gift card to Broadway businesses.
Although the pandemic is still going on, this festival brought the community together. “It was a cute event for younger kids,” Neal says. “This festival was a great way to get back into the community again after being in isolation for many months.”
Broadway will continue providing festive events to the community, including the Lighting Ceremony on Broadway, which takes place Friday, November 19. For more information on upcoming events held in downtown Green Bay, you can visit the events calendar at https://downtowngreenbay.com/explore/calendar.