Shaver's Creek to Hold Fall Festival
At the Shaver's Creek Fall Festival this weekend you'll see the typical pumpkins and corn stalks, but there will be one more aspect to the festival that separates it from others – kids will get lessons on nature.
The festival will be open on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. The main event though is the Children's Halloween Trail, which isn't your typical scary trail. The trail starts in the daylight and is meant to bring children in, not scare them away.
Brian Sedgwick, one of the main vent coordinators of the event, says each year, interns come in to come up with a new trail that offers visitors a new take on Halloween.
"At each station of the trail kids will learn something about the natural history of Halloween," Sedgwick says. "[For example] Black cats. We'll have a station where we talk about how they can see at night or why they're good hunters. We take different things from Halloween and teach them different things about it."
Some of the other stations might include the lessons about owls, spiders, pumpkins or corn stalks.
There will be many other facets to the festival including carnival like games with a Halloween twist, including "Pin the red tail on the hawk" and "Witch's Brew," a variation on the carnival game where children throw ping-pong balls in fish bowls trying to win the fish.
Live music will also be on hand, including folk and bluegrass musicians.
But the point of the festival, and the Shaver's Creek Environmental Center itself, is to get people back to nature.
Sedgwick says that Shaver's Creek does public programs throughout the year to get people into the woods surrounding their home base cabin.
Shaver's Creek is part of Penn State's outreach program, and actually teaches some classes on environmental interpretation at its remote location.
"We teach people an understanding of what's in their backyard," Sedgwick says. "We teach people about the plants and animals and what's native to the region."