Nearly 500 people are expected to attend this year’s Fall Festival at Tech’s Hyder-Burkes Pavilion this weekend, an organizer said.
The event is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Hyder-Burkes Pavilion is located on Gainesboro Grade less than two miles west of Tech and belongs to the College of Agriculture. Students use the facility year-round to raise livestock, grow vegetables and conduct events such as the festival.
Dr. Dennis Duncan, director of Tech’s College of Agriculture, said the festival originated about six years ago in a former agriculture concentration called agritourism. Agritourism experts focus on inviting residents of urban areas to experience rural life on the farm.
“I think it’d be a great opportunity for Tech students to come out and see the festival,” Duncan said, “and it’s fun to watch the kids.”
The festival is family oriented, free to the public and includes events such as free pumpkins, a hay maze, face painting, rubber duck races, an observation bee hive and live animals.
Duncan said the college collaborates with members of the Middle Tennessee Antique Engine and Tractor Association to bring historical agriculture to life.
“They bring to the site antique equipment that would’ve been used in agriculture 50, 75, 100 years ago and they do demonstrations on how to make flour and a lot of unique things that most people don’t get a chance to see, so it’s history,” he said.
Students can attend the festival and receive a history lesson or volunteer to help families enjoy the day, Duncan said.
“It was a pleasure to be able to partner with other people in the community to put on a show for people of all ages,” volunteer Kyle Davis, former Agritourism Association President and Tech graduate, said. “It was a joy seeing kids’ faces light up because of the activities and prizes and things they were able to get at the fall fun festival.”
For more questions regarding the festival, contact Duncan at firstname.lastname@example.org.