The fall season is officially among us, and one local farm continues to make their festivities a local tradition.
Sinkland Farms, a family owned and operated farm in Christiansburg, is holding its twentieth annual Pumpkin Festival from Sept. 29 to Oct. 28.
For five weekends this fall, visitors can enjoy a variety of festive activities such as a corn maze, local live music and hayrides to the pumpkin patch.
Susan Sink, owner of Sinkland Farms, said last year they had over 35,000 people over the course of the five-week festival.
“What better way to enjoy the fall season, after of course, Hokie football, than a visit to the country to find your very own 'great pumpkin,'” Sink said.
The opening weekend will also include the second annual 5K Pumpkin Run. Registration for the run begins at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 29. As a new feature this year, the New River Valley Rocketry Association will launch man-sized rockets every hour.
Sinkland Farms was established by Virginia Tech alumnus Henry Sink in 1975. Now deceased, the family puts on the pumpkin festival annually to honor him.
Lauren Bowman, a sophomore communication major, is excited to attend the festival and use the pumpkins for fall festivities at home.
“My favorite thing to do is cook and season the pumpkin seeds," Bowman said. "Plus, they make great decorations.”
Food concessions will be available, offering hot dogs, chili, pinto beans, corn muffins, apple cider and kettle corn, among other options.
The live music will kick off opening weekend. High Country, a new country and bluegrass duo from Staunton, will perform in the barn at the farm from 1 to 4 p.m.
Parking costs $5 a carload and gives visitors access to the music and clogging shows, as well as the rocket launch and much more. Other events will have additional charges.
Another feature of this year’s festival is an open-air performance of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Shows are held Friday and Saturday nights beginning at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Student tickets will be available for $5 at the event.
Rocky Nunzio, a sophomore theatre arts major performing in the Shakespeare play, is excited to bring Romeo and Juliet back to its Shakespearian roots.
“The plays were originally performed in open air theatres in England, so it’s a nice way to do Shakespeare," Nunzio said. "(It's) true to its origins.”
Next weekend will feature the Punkin’ Chunkin’ world champion group Team Carbo. The group from Raleigh, N.C. will demonstrate their catapult and sling pumpkins up to 2,000 feet in the air.
"College students generally love the pumpkin chunking," Sink said.
The festival is expected to generate large turnouts this year, and bring a little bit of fall festiveness to the area.