by Brandy Quach (Class of 2018)
Piling into cars early in the morning, students from Developing Virtue Girl School prepared to go to Ukiah’s annual Pumpkin Festival. Immediately graced with the presence of the local farmer’s market, food carts, and pumpkins, the DVGS girls were ready to begin a day full of laughs, experiences, and photos.
The streets were strung with festive lights as the rich autumn trees filled our vision. Stalls selling jewelry, pumpkin pies, and face painting surrounded the students as we explored the streets of Ukiah. The Alex R. Thomson Jr. Plaza was filled with people lining up to rock climb or experience the Ukiah Boy Scouts handmade rope courses. Denise Cao, a senior at Developing Virtue, courageously let her life be in the hands of strangers as they pulled her up into the air.
As we walked the streets, there was only one thing on our mind: the haunted house. Located in the conference hall, we all lined up to experience the level three (the scariest level) haunted house. Beginning our descent into the house, the door slammed with a bang and we were greeted with monsters and horrors. Screams pierced the air as ax hunters stalked us and mummies came to life. However, we were dauntless in our attempts and successfully braved the haunted house, stumbling out to the bright lights in daze.
Afterward, the girls ventured further into the festival and explored the rides and games. Some of us went on the Paratrooper, a great spinning ride, and others watched the abundant amount of toddlers jump excitedly in the bouncy house. The Pumpkin Festival even had a hamster ball for kids to roll around in.
As we journeyed through the stalls and booths, we were constantly bombarded with the sights and smell of the delicious food being sold. From Venezuela to the local farmer’s market, food from around the world enticed our wallets and us. Organic strawberries, handmade ice cream, and tamales filled our stomach as we viewed the thousand-pound pumpkins planted by local farmers. Aptly named, the students were shocked by how colossal the pumpkins were.
By the end of the day, the students were fully stuffed, mouths tired from smiling, and content with our trip into Ukiah. The Ukiah Annual PumpkinFest was everything we thought it would be, and better.