Every fall in the Skagit Valley, the area comes alive with the excitement and festivities of the season. With so many things to do, you’ll find dozens of reasons to make Skagit Valley your favorite destination over the colorful months of autumn. Highlights include farm and pumpkin festivals, the bountiful agricultural fall harvest, and of course the ever-exciting Halloween celebrations.
Keep reading to find out what makes the area and its fall harvest season so unique!
Skagit Valley Fall Festivals
Just when you think that summer is on its way out and things will quiet down in Skagit Valley, fall arrives. Festival events continue to fill the calendar, of which some of the family favorites for the season include:
The Giant Pumpkin Festival
As the name suggests, the Giant Pumpkin Festival attracts some of the largest cultivars in the land. In fact, it is one of the official sites for the Giant Pumpkin Commonwealth, an organization tasked with submitting world records for giant pumpkins.
The festival is hosted annually toward the end of September at Christianson’s Nursery – the spot where giant pumpkins are put to the test! The event also has other family-friendly activities to join in on too, including a hay maze, pony rides, and carnival games.
Burlington Pumpkin Pitch and Harvest Festival
The Burlington Pumpkin Pitch and Harvest Festival is a free festival for the whole family held on the last Saturday in September. The exciting event started way back in 2002 and has since grown significantly into one of the most acclaimed in the Skagit area.
It is the only pumpkin pitch festival on the west coast and offers free pony rides, live music, kids activities and, of course, pumpkin pitching. See how far and how accurately competitors can hurl a pumpkin by using medieval-style trebuchet catapults.
Festival of Family Farms
The Festival of Family Farms held in early October is another great way to get in touch with what the season is all about. Family farms across Skagit Valley open their doors to the public and allow locals and visitors to learn about crops, animals, and what it is like to be a farmer in Skagit Valley.
From farm tours, educational exhibits, activities, markets, and more, the Skagit Valley Festival of Family Farms is unique in that it allows for farmers to show the community where their food comes from and what makes the area so special.
The Harvest at Tulip Town
At Tulip Town, you can join in on the festivities and celebrations of the harvest season. Over the course of the entire month of October, the harvest at Tulip Town offers dozens of events such as a corn maze, markets, beer gardens, petting zoos, and even cider pressing! Completely immerse yourself in the season at this one of a kind event, and learn more about the tulip supplying industry. Skagit Valley is the largest supplier of tulips, daffodils, and iris bulbs in the United States, and October is planting season.
The agricultural fall harvest season in Skagit Valley is one things that makes the area so unique. The crops produced in Skagit are famous both locally and internationally. Ever since the first commercial crop of cultivated potatoes in 1853, Skagit has been the go-to supplier of crop produce for a large portion of the world.
- 50% of the world and 95% of the United States sources their beet seeds from Skagit Valley
- 75% of the US sources their spinach seeds from Skagit Valley
- 25% of the global cabbage seed industry is dependent on Skagit’s produce
Of course, the most lucrative of the agricultural harvest’s bounty is the potato which brings in $60 million annually. More than 12,000 acres of Skagit Valley are covered by potatoes. White, yellow, red, and purple varieties are grown here and sold all over the USA and Canada.
In addition to potatoes and pumpkins, many other fruits and vegetables are harvested during the Fall season. These include corn, blackberries, blueberries, brussels sprouts, tomatoes, strawberries, apples, winter squash, carrots, and celery among others. The pickings are prolific, and locals get to enjoy some of the best fresh produce in the world.
All over the Valley, Halloween celebrations are in full swing throughout the fall season. From jack o’ lantern carving to kids’ Halloween activities, the festivals truly capture the spirit of the season.
You can find many events such as the Concrete Ghost Walk, tours of haunted locations, and ghost storytelling that focuses on the area and its unique history focusing on local residents of the community.
Be sure to stop by your favorite Mount Vernon downtown businesses for the annual Downtown Trick or Treat. First Street closes to traffic between Division Street and Kincaid Street to make way for families to celebrate Halloween in a safe, welcoming environment. Local businesses share in the fun with treats and goodies for your kiddos. Don’t miss the Halloween Costume Contest at the Lincoln Theatre immediately following trick-or-treating.
The Fall harvest in the Skagit Valley is not one to miss. Whether you are a local or a visitor, there are dozens of events and destinations where you can enjoy everything that the area has to offer! Keep your eye on all the exciting events happening in the Valley and make your next Fall season the best one yet.