WELLESLEY ISLAND, New York (WWNY) – After a collapse in 2019 and a cancellation due to COVID-19 in 2020, the 42nd annual fall festival was back on the grounds surrounding Wellesley Island State Park’s Minna Anthony Common Nature Center .
There were activities for people of all ages like interactive bird demonstrations, an apple cider making station and a build your own scarecrow contest.
“We decided to pop it the bag, and that we decided to kind of do it pumpkin-themed with all the vines,” said Samuel Duffany, participant in the scarecrow contest.
Some of the younger kids enjoyed pony rides and petting zoos, including Octavia Tucci.
“My favorite part of today was horseback riding,” Tucci said.
A major theme of the event is environmental education, giving people the opportunity to learn more about their environment and how they can protect it.
A local nonprofit mission can help.
“People of all ages are trying to learn how to keep our waters clean and protect the planet, so it’s really important for us to come to the events,” said Save the River education intern Chelsea Broughton.
“There are a lot more people here than we see on our trails, so let it be known that our trails exist, our programs exist. We do a lot of education for children, education for teenagers, so it’s really nice to see families and talk to them about what we’re doing,” said Sarah Trick, watershed coordinator at Indian River Lakes. Conservancy.
Festival funds go a long way, especially for year-round programming. With the park being able to bring local school districts for field trips.
“It’s about the community, showing them what we’re doing and helping, we can help the community as well as the environment,” said Andrew Kane, president of the Friends of the Nature Center.
Park officials say Autumn Fest is just a bigger scale of what they hold every weekend, urging the public to come and learn more about the local environment.
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