By Brittany Allen

Goldendale has a new event


Though many millennials will tell you that fall is the season of sweaters, cider, and the dreaded return to school—in rural communities like Goldendale—it’s also about something more timeless and influential than the Pumpkin Spice latte: harvest.

Goldendale has been known to host its fair share of seasonal fun for children, but one thing the Goldendale Chamber of Commerce and other members of the community craved was an event that would appeal more to older residents.

An affair like that coming up on Saturday, Oct. 1, has been the goal of the Chamber since before Director Dana Peck joined the staff last year. The event, simply titled the Goldendale Harvest Festival, will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Ekone Park.

Peck, along with Nicole Lundin of Three Mountain Marketing and Phyllis Cook of the Chamber, have been very involved in planning and promoting the festival, but it has been an even larger and more successful group effort than they would have hoped.

“It’s been really interesting because—especially at the last organizational meeting—we had probably four or five of the most active groups countywide sitting around a table, but they don’t typically sit around a table with each other, and certainly not with the Chamber,” Peck said. “So for my interests, that was just the perfect meeting… If you’d have walked in you would have sworn we’d been doing this for years. [It was] just a whole bunch of people who get a lot done around this county all focused on this event and it just felt great.”

Opening with a last chance to partake of the Goldendale Farmer’s Market at 9 a.m., the day is scheduled to be packed full of diversions and delicacies unique to the Pacific Northwest—and Goldendale in particular.

Throughout the day, people will have the opportunity to shop, eat, dance, learn, and win prizes.

Starting at 9 a.m., Brock Warrener will be hosting a Bike Fest to coincide with the harvest festivities. This event will feature timed mountain bike trials, a bicycle rodeo, a helmet giveaway, and lessons on bicycle safety. For more information about this event or to register, contact Brock Warrener at

If cycling isn’t your favorite method of staying active, you can also dance your way through the festival. Caller Sue Baker and the Trout Lake String Band will be providing accompaniment and instruction for country dancing at the gazebo. Dance sessions will take place at 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., and there will be a waltz after dinner.

Speaking of dinner, after the daytime festivities close up shop, the Goldendale FFA students will be hosting a Farm to Table Harvest Supper from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. The students will serve while the cattlemen and cattlewomen associations cook up beef sliders. Also on the menu will be freshly pressed apple cider from Bassetti Orchard, coffee from Father Michael’s Coffee Roastery, wines from Jacob Williams Winery, salads created from donated Farmer’s Market produce, artisan bread from Lefever-Holbrook Ranch, followed up by fruit cobbler supplied by the Goldendale Grange and made from local fruit and wheat.

Tickets for this portion of the evening are limited; seating capacity is set at 100 people. Tickets are $7.50 per child under 12 and $15 per adult; they can be purchased either from the Chamber office or online at Funds from the supper are going to the Goldendale Future Farmers of America.

“Education is a huge thing that cattlemen and cattlewomen focus on,” Lauren Schuster, primary school teacher and president of the Klickitat County Cattlewomen Association, said. “That’s one of our focuses for promoting the beef industry through education. This is another way to do a community service/outreach program to educate students and the public on what exactly cattlemen and cattlewomen do.”

The Chamber hopes to use this event to both showcase local products and generate revenue for the area.

The same weekend Maryhill Museum and Maryhill Winery will also be hosting events, but the Chamber sees the coinciding of events as a good thing. They do not wish to detract from other festivities, but rather attract people to stick around the area a while longer on the first.

“This is really the Chamber’s first step into agritourism,” said Peck.

“It does sound like a celebration at the end of the summer,” Lundin added. “One of the reasons we chose this date is because the Maryhill Car is King weekend is the same weekend. We kind of like the idea—we don’t want to take anything away from that event—but let’s bring people up the hill.”


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