BirminghamOctober 14, 2013
Birmingham families celebrate the season with fall events
By Tiffany Esshaki
C & G Staff Writer
BIRMINGHAM — Whether you’re looking for spooky fun or fresh, seasonal snacks, there’s plenty to do this weekend in Birmingham to celebrate Halloween.
On Oct. 20, the Birmingham Pumpkin Patch and Halloween Parade will be back with tons of family fun just outside of The Community House, including crafts, live entertainment, snacks and more.
On that same day, the Birmingham Farmers Market will bid shoppers farewell with its annual End of the Season Celebration. Families can get ready for the parade and pumpkin patch festivities with a dose of old-fashioned kettle corn, pumpkin-carving demonstrations and other attractions.
Executive Director of the Birmingham Principal Shopping District John Heiney said this year’s farmers market was an overall success, with more visitors heading downtown to shop than ever before.
“We had our biggest attendance ever at the Corn Festival in August, with over 4,500 people,” he said. “People are definitely coming out. It’s a meeting place as much as anything.”
Heiney said that from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday, families are invited to come to the market and check out a variety of Halloween-themed activities, including hay rides, a professional pumpkin-carving demonstration, kids’ crafts and more.
Birmingham-based photographer Laurie Tennent will be on hand to take pictures of kids in their costumes against a Halloween backdrop. Also a first this year will be the chance for little ones to practice their trick-or-treating skills as they tour the market.
“The vendors will be handing out treats. We’re really excited about it,” said Heiney.
Later that afternoon, the Birmingham-Bloomfield Chamber and Junior League of Birmingham will welcome families to The Community House for their annual festivities 1-4:30 p.m.
According to Chamber President Joe Bauman, the Halloween celebration is a staple event for the chamber and Birmingham families alike.
“This is actually our 77th annual parade, if you can believe it,” said Bauman, adding that this will be the 20th year for the Pumpkin Patch, hosted by the JLB. “It’s fun, it’s free, and it’s really family centered.”
The Pumpkin Patch will give kids the chance to enjoy a huge Halloween party with games, crafts and plenty of treats — many of which will be a healthier take on traditional Halloween eats. Bauman said organic apple cider and other goodies will be provided by Whole Foods Market.
Later, little ghosts and goblins can gather for their annual strut down the city streets in the Halloween costume parade.
“We usually have one of the high school bands, face painting and some other activities. It’s a great tradition we’ve joined together on,” said Bauman. “A lot of people ask why the chamber does this event, since it doesn’t support a business interest. We think it’s important to show our support for the community in general, because the community and residents obviously support the businesses. This is our way of saying thank you.”
The Birmingham Farmers Market End of Season Celebration will take place in Municipal Parking Lot 6, on north Old Woodward, north of Harmon Street. For more information, visit www.birminghamfarmersmarket.org.
The annual Birmingham Pumpkin Patch and Halloween Parade will be held on the terrace of The Community House, 380 S. Bates St. in downtown Birmingham.