The Hippo


Apr 18, 2019








Milford Pumpkin Festival 

Where: Various locations in Milford 
When: Friday, Oct. 9, through Sunday, Oct. 11
Cost: Free admission; some activities have a fee
Ongoing events: 
Amusement rides: Fri., 5 to 9 p.m., Sat., 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sun., 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Live music: Fri., 5 to 9:30 p.m., Sat., 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., and Sun., 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Emerson Park activities: Fri., 5:30 to 9 p.m., Sat., 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sun., 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Middle St./Oval activities: Fri., 5:30 to 9 p.m., Sat., 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sun., 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Community House Lawn activities: Sat., 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sun., 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Craft fair: Sat., 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sun., 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Haunted Trail: Fri. & Sat., 6 to 9 p.m. 
Pumpkin Catapult: Sat. & Sun., 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Special events: 
Beer & Wine Tasting: Fri., 5:30 to 9 p.m. 
Opening Ceremony: Fri., 6:45 p.m. 
Fireworks: Fri., 8:45 p.m. 
“Stories from the Stone” tours: Sat., 11 a.m. & 2 p.m. 
Great Pumpkin Contest Weigh-In: Sat., noon 
Zombie Walk: Sat., 6 to 9 p.m. 
Pumpkin Lighting: Sat., 7 to 7:30 p.m. (bring your carved pumpkin between 6:30 and 7 p.m.)
Talent Show: Sat., 7 p.m. 
Milford HS 5K: Sun., 9 a.m.

Pumpkin invasion
Milford celebrates town-wide weekend pumpkin festival

By Angie Sykeny

 Over 35,000 people are expected in Milford for the sixth annual Milford Pumpkin Festival, happening Friday, Oct. 9, through Sunday, Oct. 11. The event features three days of food, entertainment, crafts, kids’ activities and, of course, lots of pumpkins. 

“It’s a great family-orientated event, and it really does a good job of kicking off the fall,” said Wendy Hunt, executive director of the Milford Improvement Team, which organizes the event. “It feels like fall has really started when you come to the Pumpkin Festival.” 
The festival opens Friday at 5 p.m., with activities in various locations. An opening ceremony at the Oval will include the presentation of Milford’s Citizen of the Year award and announcement of the Pumpkin Festival Scholarship contest winners followed by the pumpkin runner and Town Hall lighting. One of the festival’s most popular events, the beer and wine tasting, will be held on the Community House lawn. For $10, participants can sample over 15 New Hampshire spirits, enjoy live music by Murphy’s Blues and purchase dinner provided by the Red Arrow Diner. A fireworks display will close out the night. 
Get in the Halloween spirit by doing the Haunted Trail, offered Friday and Saturday at Emerson Park for $5. Guests will embark on a walk full of creepy sets and scary creatures. Hunt said the trail is a family-friendly, “fun” kind of scary and would be appropriate for most kids. 
Saturday and Sunday will have continuous festivities, beginning in the morning, in various locations around town. Carnival rides will be at the Boys & Girls Club, and the bounce house and climbing wall will be at Emerson Park. The Community House lawn is the place for family fun like scarecrow making, face painting, pumpkin decorating and live music. Food vendors, pumpkins for sale, other vendor booths and more live music can be found on Middle Street and around the Oval, and the arts and crafts fair will be held inside the Town Hall.  
There are also some special events happening on Saturday only. Join the Milford Historic Society for “Stories From Stone,” an interactive, humorous tour of Elm Street Cemetery, where gravesites tell the stories of the early days of Milford. Come in your most convincing zombie getup and makeup for the Zombie Walk & Costume Contest at the Community House lawn. There will be judging in several categories, followed by a parade to the Oval and back. Don’t miss the annual Pumpkin Festival Talent Show at the Amato Theater, where singers, dancers, jugglers and other talented individuals and groups will take the stage to compete for prizes. 
It wouldn’t be a pumpkin festival without the pumpkins. Test your aim at the Pumpkin Catapult, held on Saturday and Sunday on South Street, and see if you can hit the floating scarecrow targets in the Railroad Pond. Head to the Oval on Saturday afternoon for the Great Pumpkin Contest Weigh-In, where you’ll see some the biggest and best pumpkins grown in New Hampshire. Cash prizes will be awarded for the largest pumpkin and largest Milford-grown pumpkin. Also at the Oval will be the festival’s trademark Pumpkin Lighting. 
“Families can bring the pumpkins they carved at home, and we put those little battery-operated candles in them display them,” Hunt said. “That’s the big traditional thing for people — to bring their pumpkins. That, and the scarecrow building.”

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