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Hartsburg Pumpkin Festival to begin Saturday morning, traffic impacts expected


The 32nd annual Hartsburg Pumpkin Festival will kick off Saturday at 9 a.m. until 5 p.m and family fun events and traffic impacts are expected in the area.

Signs will be posted around the event to direct festivalgoers to obey the traffic rules set in place.

Route A will be closed to festival traffic, except motorcycles are allowed. Christian School Rd. will also be closed to festival traffic.

Both roads will be open to local traffic as the festival is going on.

The festival is free to attend, but parking will be $5 per car. Weather permitting, parking will be in local fields. If weather does pose an issue, secondary parking along the roads will be available.

Handicap parking is available as a first come first serve.

If there are any emergency changes, alternate routes and parking instructions will be posted on the festival's Facebook page.

A parade that started at 9:30 a.m. will also cause some traffic impacts.

The parade will begin on south 2nd St. at the Katy Trailhead. It will then head north to East Main St. before heading west on 1st Street, making a left and continuing to Lions Club Park.

Along with the parade, there will also be vendors and family-fun events throughout the festival.

The festival will kick off with the crowning of the 2023 Pumpkin Royalty on the main stage at 9 a.m. which will be followed by the parade.

Musical guests like duo Sarah and Mark and the Offroad Cadillac Band will be on the main stage to play a variety of different music types.

The Mid-Mo Magic Show will begin at 1 p.m. on the main stage.

The festival will then pick up again Sunday at 9 a.m. until 5 p.m., starting with a church service on the main stage hosted by the Hartsburg Baptist Church and Peace United Church of Christ.

Following the service, Joe Fry the Guitar Guy will perform along with the Mid-Mo Magic Show and a performance by Jordan Heckemeyer.

According to the festival's website, they are expecting between 20,000 and 30,000 people to attend this year.

Drought across the state has caused issues for farmers with their pumpkin yield.

Jo Hackman, owner of Hackman Farms said the drought prevented her farm from growing their typical number of pumpkins. She had to collaborate with other local farmers to make sure she had enough for the festival.

“We didn’t get any rain in June or July and finally got some rain in August, but it was already too late. We’ve got partial crop here, but we did have to seek other venues,” said Hackman.

According to the US Drought Monitor, over 2.7 million people in Missouri are living in drought stricken areas.

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Gabrielle Teiner


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