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Fairbanks pumpkin patch carves out time for family fun

Published: Oct. 3, 2020 at 5:35 PM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) -Community members got some sunshine and enjoyed this unusually warm fall weather with a visit to the pumpkin patch and looking zoo at the Tanana Valley Fairgrounds Saturday afternoon.

At the start of the event dozens of families lined up for a chance to pick out the perfect pumpkin. Small ones, big ones, odd ones, children squealed as they searched for just the right one.

Only a few families at a time were permitted inside the patch to help accommodate social distancing.

Val Adams, a Fairbanks resident was there with friends and family. She, like many community members, was excited to do something in public. “There hasn’t been anything for the kids to do due to COVID, so we thought this would just be a fun activity for the day,” Adams said.

Once finished, people could walk across the fairgrounds and check out the “looking” zoo, which according to one of the animal handlers was due to the goats not wanting to wear their masks.

Curry the goat was part of the "looking zoo" at Saturday's Pumpkin Patch event.  Curry's claim to fame was in October 2019 when he escaped his owner and was spotted all over town before being apprehended by law enforcement.
Curry the goat was part of the "looking zoo" at Saturday's Pumpkin Patch event. Curry's claim to fame was in October 2019 when he escaped his owner and was spotted all over town before being apprehended by law enforcement.(Sarah Hollister)

Baby pigs, geese, and ducks lined the grassy field area, and there was even an old friend in attendance, Curry the Goat. Curry’s claim to fame happened last year when he made a daring escape from his owner after being sold for meat. He’s now the mascot for a Fairbanks reentry program.

Locals enjoyed snacks while little ones participated in games put on by different groups from around town.

Children played games along the walkways of the Tanana Valley Fairgrounds Saturday afternoon.
Children played games along the walkways of the Tanana Valley Fairgrounds Saturday afternoon.(Sarah Hollister)

Karen Lane, Operations Manager at the Tanana Valley State Fair said that while this year’s event was different than past years, it was still important to do some kind of event.

“We have our pumpkin patch... we called it the Pumpkin Patch instead of the Fall Festival because it’s a little bit smaller due to COVID and non-profits not being able to participate, but we still have a great turnout and a lot of activities.” Lane said.

All in all, families seemed grateful to carve out some time for fun and a little bit of normalcy in what looks like will be a very unusual harvest season.

Copyright 2020 KTVF. All rights reserved.

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