Several Halloween- and fall-related festivals in the City of Fort Atkinson were given the green light by the city council Tuesday night. Here is a roundup:
On Halloween, Saturday, Oct. 31, the Fort Atkinson Area Chamber of Commerce will be holding a Not-So-Fast-Wear-Your-Mask
3k, from 8 a.m. to noon.
According to Carrie Chisholm, executive director of the Fort Atkinson Area Chamber of Commerce, this likely one-time event, organized by the chamber, will be held in conjunction with the final Fort Farmers Market of the season.
The event, expected to attract more than 50 attendees, is intended “to encourage people to enjoy the harvest at the market, celebrate Halloween — what better time to wear your mask? — and get a little exercise,” Chisholm explained to the council during its Tuesday meeting. “Everything is scaled to allow all ages to participate as much or as little as they desire.”
Participants will begin running or walking along the riverwalk by the farmers market, she said, and then follow the bike trail to Jones Market and return or head to the drive-through Trick-or-Treat event at the Hoard Historical Museum.
“The route is open in whole or part, so people can start and finish any time during farmers market hours,” Chisholm said. “There is no official timer, thus the ‘Not-So-Fast’ name.”
Participants will register online through the chamber website, she noted.
“Commemorative T-shirts can be picked up during regular hours of the Fort Farmers Market, and participants are encouraged to wear facemasks and walk or run the suggested route at their leisure,” Chisholm said. “Market vendors will be offering take-home crafts and trick-or-treating at their booths.”
“The route begins along the riverwalk at the base of Brock’s Riverwalk & Tavern to Robert Street, where runners will cross to the bike trail along Jones Avenue,” Chisholm informed the council. “At Jones Market, they can turn around and return the way they came, or cross to Jones Park and head toward the Hoard Museum.”
The route is approximately 1.86 miles, or three kilometers, she noted.
“While unconfirmed, we (organizers) also are hoping to have individual musicians stationed along the route, distanced from the trail to protect walkers and runners,” Chisholm pointed out. “Participants will be invited to enjoy festivities planned at the Hoard Museum and Jones Market that day.”
In the event of another COVID closure, registrants still can pick up their T-shirts from the farmers market pick-up booth.
Also slated for Halloween, Oct. 31, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., will be “Harvest Fest” at the Hoard Historical Museum, located at 401 Whitewater Ave.
Museum director Merrilee Lee said the program will be a drive-through event featuring fall-themed crafts, goodies and Halloween candy. It also will explore the history of harvest and Halloween activities.
The no-contact event is free and open to all to attend. It will start prior to the scheduled trick-or-treating in Fort Atkinson, from 1 to 4 p.m. Attendees will drive by the museum and pick up a bag full of goodies and crafts.
The event will require the closure of Foster Street, from Fourth Street south to Whitewater Avenue, as well as the 400 block of South Fourth Street, from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
The director said there is no financial impact to the city for this event, which is anticipated to draw more than 500 people.
An Afternoon in the Lot
Meanwhile, Bill Camplin and Kitty Welch are hosting An Afternoon in the Lot at their Café Carpe, 18 S. Water St. West, on Sunday, Sept. 27, from 2 to 7 p.m. An estimated 50 to 80 persons are expected to attend this gathering, properly and safely contained within a designated area.
Bill Camplin said the event is intended to get residents outdoors this fall and relax to some music after so much time spent indoors at home amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Music at the event, he said, might feature voice, acoustic guitar, cello and violin, but no drums or bass guitar, and “probably less noise than many motorcycles.”
The event will be ticketed, and largely by invitation. Beer and wine will be served.
Meanwhile, the Fort Atkinson Area Chamber of Commerce’s 25th annual Holiday Parade is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 14, at 5:30 p.m. in downtown Fort Atkinson.
“We surveyed past participants in order to determine if this event would be supported this year, and the response was positive,” said Kelley Westphal, chamber project manager, and Marissa Weidenfeller, parade chairperson. “We expect no more than 40 entries which should minimize street closure times.”
Parade entries will assemble in the Fort Atkinson Middle School and St. Paul’s Lutheran Church parking lot located on South Fourth Street East and Bluff Street. The entries will exit onto Milwaukee Avenue East, from Bluff and High streets; proceed west to Main Street, north on Main Street and then west on to Madison Avenue.
“It is our intention that all motorized or animal-drawn floats will continue on Madison Avenue to Robert Street, and return to the starting point, and that all walking entries will return near the bike trail entrance,” the organizers said.
“Should we experience another shutdown, our contingency plan is to host a ‘reverse parade’ in which the floats are lined up and lighted, but it is the spectators who move, driving past the floats during the designated time-frame,” Westphal and Weidenfeller concluded.