Zeeland’s Pumpkinfest Barnyard Bash is back

Pumpkinfest, Zeeland’s oldest and most beloved festival, is back. The 30-year tradition celebrates community, family fun, and fall activities. The year’s theme is “Pumpkinfest Barnyard Bash,” and features many free and low-cost events that can be enjoyed by all ages. 

This year's festival is Friday and Saturday, Oct. 1-2. With so many activities planned, organizers are listing all of the Pumpkinfest happenings on the Zeeland Festivals, Inc.'s Facebook page and the website www.zeelandfestivals.com to make it easier to keep track of them all. 

“We are so excited for the return of Pumpkinfest,” says Abby deRoo, City Marketing Director. “This will be our largest festival and first parade since 2019 and we couldn’t be more pleased with how the community has come together to support the return of this local favorite! It’s incredibly heartwarming to work on a festival that has been part of the Zeeland community for so long.”

For the sixth year, Pumpkinfest has coordinated a community art-centered project known as Pumpkinfest Avenue Art. Community members were invited to join in the celebration by participating with Pumpkinfest Avenue Art to express their creative talents. Anyone was welcomed to participate.

Local artists, schools, and community groups joined in the celebration by painting wooden barnyard animals featuring their interpretation of the Pumpkinfest Barnyard Bash theme. These creations have been positioned along Main Street for community members and visitors to admire.

The festival is featuring KidZfest, where families will find inflatables, petting zoos, stage performances, pony rides, games, snacks, and more. This fun zone will be located on Church Street, just south of Main Avenue.

On Friday evening, there will be Dessert on Us at 6 p.m. on Church Street. This celebration of community includes a complimentary doughnut and cider for everyone. The sweet treat is combined with an evening of family activities, including the Kids Tractor Pull at 4 p.m. on Main Street, an outdoor movie showing of “Coco” at 7:30 p.m. in the splash pad, and KidzFest events all day long.

Both days will feature live outdoor Music on Main Street concerts in Zeeland’s Social District, accompanied by food trucks and local restaurants. The concert lineup is:

Friday 7-10 p.m. — Pretty Rage
Saturday Noon to 3 p.m. — Dunegrass
Saturday 4-7 p.m. — Catfish and the Main
Saturday 8-11 p.m. — Rock Shop

Other Pumpkinfest attractions include:
Saturday 8:30 a.m. — Pumpkinfest 5K Run, organized by the Zeeland Athletic Boosters and hosted by Zeeland West High School, 3390 100th Ave.
Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. — Civil War Reenactors at the Dekker Huis Museum, 37 E. Main Ave.
Saturday 11 a.m. — Zeeland Community Band Concert, corner of Main Avenue and Church Street
Saturday noon — Pumpkin Roll (bring your own pumpkin), Zeeland Christian School hill, 334 W. Central Ave.
Saturday 3 p.m. — The much-anticipated Pumpkinfest Parade will march down city streets. The parade will feature marching bands, walking groups, tractors, and, of course, floats representing this year’s theme. The parade route is as follows: west on Main Avenue from Centennial Street to State Street, south on State Street to Central Avenue, Street on Central Avenue ending at Maple Street. 

Pumpkinfest is organized by Zeeland Festivals Inc. and sponsored by the generosity of more than 50 local businesses and organizations.


Read more articles by Shandra Martinez.