5 things to do this weekend
1. Ellendale Fall Festival
Fifth Avenue in Ellendale will be filled this weekend with vendors, food and more for the first annual Ellendale Fall Festival. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday in downtown Ellendale, over 20 vendors will be outside along the street with different products for sale, including home decor, crafts, jewelry, candles, canned goods and more. Some vendors may be on hand from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Food vendors scheduled to appear are El Rey Del Taco, Pretzel Whiz, Meggie Sue’s Cupcakes, B-Lo Zero Sno Cones and T’s Sweets, according to the event’s Facebook page. The event is meant to highlight businesses in downtown Ellendale, including Two Doves Boutique, Ellendale Cafe and Floors 4 You, where the “Panther Den” will be set up outside. There will be an antique car show from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. along the street. Gwen Reiss, owner of Two Doves Boutique, said the event will be the kickoff to raising money for a mural to be painted in town by artist Chandler Anderson. Those unable to attend Saturday can donate to the mural effort at Two Doves Boutique or at First National Bank in Ellendale. Reiss said the plan is to make the festival an annual tradition moving forward.
2. Harmony Haunted Hayride
Harmony Park in Clarks Grove will host haunted hayrides through the weekend of Halloween, where guests will be able to “travel by tractor and hay wagon through 30 terrifying acres of spooky burr oaks on Friday and Saturday nights in October,” according to the event’s Facebook page. The first rides start at 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and the last rides leave at 9:45 p.m. each night, weather permitting. The last rides on Halloween will be at 10:45 p.m. Wagons will be spaced out for safety and will run continuously as needed. The cost is $15 per person — cash only — and tickets can only be purchased at the gate; no online sales will be conducted. Same-night second rides can be purchased for $8. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, masks and social distancing will be enforced, and waivers will be required with admission. Smokin’ Bros BBQ, a full bar, cider, hot chocolate, popcorn and bonfires will be available. There will be live music on Halloween night. There is no age limit for the event; however, it is being designed for mature audiences, according to the event’s page.
3. Ghoul’s Day Out
Downtown Lake Mills will host a Ghoul’s Day Out on Saturday at participating businesses. Participants can pick up stamp cards at the Lake Mills Chamber Development Corporation office between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., and then visit the business locations on the card, as well as others, to receive stamps. The more stamps people get, the more times they will be entered into prize drawings. Those participating are asked to adhere to the individual businesses’ COVID-19 policies. Participating businesses are the chamber, Swallow Coffeehouse, Uptown Boutique, 5 Alarm Brewing Co., Salon 304 Spa & Boutique, Singelstad Hardware, Mill Street Liquor, North Branch, Lazy Acre Winery and Teluwut, according to the event’s Facebook page.
4. Fall festival event
Hy-Vee in Albert Lea will host a fall festival event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the store, 2708 Bridge Ave. in Albert Lea. In addition to a tent sale, there will be a petting zoo and other family friendly events, according to the event’s Facebook page.
5. Gnome make-and-take classes
Junktion Market will host two different gnome make-and-take classes this weekend. One will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, and the other will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday. Both will be at Northbridge Mall, 2510 Bridge Ave. in Albert Lea. For $25, participants will be able to make a fall or Halloween gnome with materials and instructions provided. Glue guns will be provided, but adult assistance will be needed for any children attending. Prepayment will be required, and can be done at Junktion Market or over the phone. Space for the classes will be limited to 15 people each. Masks and social distancing will be required, according to the events’ Facebook pages.