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Pumpkins and ponies: A celebration of fall

-Messenger file photo
A crowd watches as Jadan Castorena, of Hampton, moves into position for a stunt on the back of Jack, one of the Dragonfire Dancing Horses, during a past performance at the annual Pumpkins & Ponies event at Springvale Farm near Humboldt. The Dragonfire Dancing Horses will be back for this year’s event.

HUMBOLDT — A simple question 14 years ago led Lonnie and Bob Larson, of Humboldt, to a long tradition of hosting the annual Pumpkins and Ponies at their Springvale Farm near Humboldt.

It began with ponies.

“My husband and I gave pony rides to kids,” she said. “Then one year Bob experimented with pumpkins in the garden. They were very prolific.”

“We asked ourselves what are we going to do with all these pumpkins?” she said.

So they invited people to the farm, gave them pumpkins and pony rides and a tradition was born.

-Messenger file photo
This stagecoach, built in 1893, will return to the Pumpkins and Ponies event on Saturday and Oct. 13 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.

This year’s edition of Pumpkins and Ponies is from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sunday at the farm, 2603 Lone Tree Road. Admission and parking are free.

“Each year it gets a little bigger,” Lonnie Larson said.

Over the years, lots of activities and performances have been added.

Among the many things, visitors can ride a stagecoach, see dancers perform with horses, watch a plowing contest and even attend church on Sunday.

“It’s a great place and space for a family to come out and spend a day,” Lonnie Larson said.

Activities and shows are geared so every age of family member can enjoy them.

“It’s for kids of all ages,” she said.

She added that in spite of the wet and unusual growing season, there are plenty of pumpkins available.

“It’s hard not to get a good pumpkin crop,” she joked.

The Larsons get plenty of help with their celebration.

“The event is kept running with the help of family, friends and neighbors,” she said. “We appreciate them very much.”

She’s keeping her fingers crossed for good weather.

“We want the sun to shine for both days.”

14th annual Pumpkins and Ponies

Both days

Pumpkins

Pony Rides

Wagon rides

Plowing contest

Animals by Mystery’s Meadows

Mile High Stagecoach

Dragonfly Dancing Horses

Corn shelling demonstration

Vendors featuring a variety of foods.

Saturday

Photos by Meyer Photography

Puppet show

Nedd Freeley Funn Band

Sunday

Church service 10:30 a.m. with meal to follow

Golden Gospel Five