Pumpkins & ponies

12th annual autumn event is Saturday

This stagecoach, built in 1893, will return to the Pumpkins and Ponies event Saturday at SpringVale Farm in Humboldt County. People visiting the fall festival will be able to climb aboard for an 1890s style ride across the farm. The vehicle is provided by Mile High Stagecoach Co., owned by D.W. Koss of Lacrosse, Wisconsin.

HUMBOLDT — The 12th Annual Pumpkins and Ponies celebration will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday at the SpringVale Farm, 2603 Lone Tree Road, near Humboldt.

“Pumpkins and Ponies is always held on the second Saturday of October,” said Lonnie Larson, who owns the farm along with Bob Larson. “Guests can expect a day packed full of entertainment and activities for all ages.”

Families can come check out the Larsons’ 1-acre pumpkin patch overlooking the Des Moines River Valley. Horse-drawn wagons and vintage tractors are provided by volunteers.

During the 12th annual fall celebration, there will be plenty of activities, including the pony rides throughout the day.

“Kids will get to take a trip to the patch to pick out their own special pumpkin, and we have many varieties of pumpkins to choose from,” Larson said.

Les Fevold with Rodeo Hat Co. demonstrated his cowboy hat painting technique during a past Pumpkins and Ponies event at SpringVale Farm in Humboldt County. Fevold custom paints cowboy hats in the purchaser’s favorite colors. Fevold has been a vendor at Pumpkins and Ponies for many years.

Other kid activities include a live animal display with many farm animals, a ring toss where the winner gets a pumpkin, face painting, and the Larsons’ even have some new games for this year’s lineup.

Along with all the festival activities, members of the Des Moines River Valley Antique Tractor and Small Engine Club will be showing how plowing was done back in the “good old days.” Antique and vintage tractors from club members and area farmers and friends will be bringing special tractors, some to demonstrate plowing, and some to display.

Doug Lenning and his gas engines will be present again this year having old-time corn shelling demonstrations.

Also throughout the day will be plenty of entertainment for families. The Mile High Stagecoach returns for the second year, coming from West Salem, Wisconsin.

“This was a very popular addition last year, D.W. Koss will be providing rides in his authentic 1893 stagecoach pulled by a hitch of blue roans,” Lonnie Larson said. ”Rides and demonstrations will be available throughout the day.”

Bella Opheim leads a pony carrying a young rider during a past Pumpkins and Ponies event at SpringVale Farm in Humboldt County.

Back again by popular demand is the Dragonfire Dancing Horses. They will be performing trick riding routines, patriotic drill, and a costumed horse show throughout the day for guests.

“A hallmark of Pumpkins and Ponies will be pony and horse rides. The ‘Pony Team’ will be on had to assist riders, and there will be short rest periods and a lunch break for the benefit of the ponies and helpers,” Larson said.

Pumpkins and Ponies will also include live music with performances throughout the day by “The Expressions,” an Iowa Hall of Fame Band. They will be performing 50s/60s music, along with a variety of other selections.

This group has been entertaining since 1958, and includes musicians from Storm Lake, Ida Grove, Pocahontas, and Humboldt.

For more entertainment at 11:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. the Badger Lutheran Church Youth will be providing a musical puppet show.

Lonnie Larson said last year they over heard a comment from a little kid saying “Grandpa, this has been the best day of my whole life!”

Vendors will be onsite again this year and will give families an opportunity to browse and pick out some unique items. Vendors will include B.B.Ques Barbeque Store, Bernie’s Leatherworks, D & D Honey, Genie’s Surprise, Handmade by Janet, Highway 7 Market, Horse Shoe Art, Scott Johnson, LeeAnn’s Creations, Olde Fashion Kettle Korn, and Rodeo Hat Company.

New vendors this year include: Wood Ya, with custom-made wood creations; Janet Fetters, local licensed baker well known for her cakes, bars, and cookies; The Plainview Country Store, offering a variety of Amish-baked goodies, noodles, breads, and more, as well as hand-made rugs and other items; and Beekman’s Homemade Ice Cream, serving a variety of ice cream treats.

Food on grounds will include Smoked Ribs and More, a lunch menu of smoked meat sandwiches and fixings, and the Painted Pony, a lunch menu including hamburgers, hot dogs, steak sandwiches, chips, soda, milk, water, caramel apples, and pie and ice cream.

There will be photo opportunities provided by Meyer’s Photography, against a setting with a special background.

There is no admission charge and the free parking will be large, easy-access parking areas available. Attendants will be there to help direct. The Larsons’ will also provide a shuttle service of pumpkins to the guests’ vehicle.

There will be a rain date set for Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

For more information call (515) 368-3005, (515) 368-5793, (515) 332-4793, or contact them via Facebook (SpringVale Farm).