© 2011 Idaho Press-Tribune

TREASURE VALLEY — Fall harvest events abound in the Treasure Valley throughout the month of October.

The Idaho Botanical Garden celebrates the bounty of the summer growing season at its Fall Harvest Festival Saturday and Sunday and the popular Scarecrow Stroll that runs today through the end of the month.

In Eagle it’s the first-ever Great Pumpkin Arts Festival, set for Saturday at ArtsWest School of Performing and Visual Arts, 3300 W. State St., Eagle.

And around the valley you can partake in the fun of corn mazes at places like The Farmstead and Linder Farms, farmers markets, spooky haunted fields and houses, and farmers markets packed with the bountiful harvest of the Treasure Valley.

Fall Harvest Fest at the IBG

Celebrate the fall season in the Idaho Botanical Garden, 2355 Old Penitentiary Road, in Boise. Amid colorful and creative scarecrow displays, visitors can enjoy live music, hay rides, games and kid’s activities. They also can shop the farmers market, with a wide variety of local vendors and fresh ingredients, and purchase pumpkins and sample delectable food, fall brews, wine and fresh cider.

The event runs from noon to 6 p.m. each day. Admission is $3 for IBG and Boise Co-op members, $6 for non-members, $3 for ages 4 to 12 and free for kids under 4.

The companion Scarecrow Stroll runs through the month. Scarecrows can be found peeping out around the trees and shrubs of the garden. Members and guests of all ages can join in on the fun by voting for their favorite.

This year’s theme is characters from children’s books. The stroll is open during regular hours at the IBG.

Note: A playful evening to benefit the Children’s Adventure Garden at the IBG “Grow in the Garden Party” is planned from 5:30 to 10 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $60 per person and are available at idahobotanicalgarden.org or 343-8649. There will be music by Steve Eaton and special guests including saxophonist Phil Garonzik and DJ Joe Norbe. A buffet of locally-sourced and Idaho-focused food will be served up by Bon Appetit.

‘Great Pumpkin Arts Festival’

ArtsWest School for the Performing and Visual Arts presents the first annual community Great Pumpkin Arts Festival from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday. The free, family oriented event will showcase local Treasure Valley artists and musicians and will also feature local food vendors, art merchants and arts and crafts activities. The festival will culminate with an 8 p.m. carved pumpkin luminary lighting ceremony.

“We are very excited to continue to be part of supporting the up-and-coming local, talented artists and giving them an opportunity to give back to the community,” Jeff Baker, executive director for ArtsWest School, said. “The Great Pumpkin Arts Festival will be a great day to celebrate the arts. There will be two stages for live music performances and lots of fun, family things to do.”

Festival admission is free, but a $5 per car donation is welcome. Families are encouraged to bring a carved pumpkin and a votive candle and participate in the lighting ceremony.

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