As a native of Jones County and the Anamosa area, it isn't officially fall until Pumpkinfest. The annual fall celebration and pumpkin weigh-off happen this Saturday in Anamosa.

AnamosaPumpkinfest and the Ryan Norlin GIANT Pumpkin Weigh-Off are entering their 34th year. The fall festival is held annually on the first Saturday in October. Main Street in Anamosa shuts down with food vendors and crafts. There is a classic car show, a parade, and the pumpkin weigh-off at the Lawrence Community Center. I can't tell you how many sun-splashed Saturdays I've spent enjoying everything about fall at Pumpkinfest.

The very first Pumpkinfest celebration was held back in 1989. The event was started by Tom Norlin. It was dedicated to his nephew Ryan Norlin who lost his life in a boating accident in June of that year. Tom had been growing pumpkins for years and Ryan loved to help. It makes perfect sense that the event is held in his honor each year. The Ryan Norlin GIANT Pumpkin Weigh-Off.

Facebook via Anamosa Pumpkinfest and Ryan Norlin GIANT Pumpkin Weigh-Off
Facebook via Anamosa Pumpkinfest and Ryan Norlin GIANT Pumpkin Weigh-Off

So if you want to experience one of the best fall festivals in Eastern Iowa, take the short drive to Anamosa this Saturday. Check out the giant pumpkins at the Lawrence Center. Make sure and grab a turkey and stuffing sandwich! Take in the parade later that afternoon. Fall doesn't get any better than Pumpkinfest. At least in the opinion of this Anamosa native.

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