Herbstfest canceled in Huntingburg


HUNTINGBURG — This year’s Herbstfest has been canceled.

The festival committee made the announcement Tuesday afternoon.

“We decided it would be best to hold off this year,” festival chairman Sarah Flamion said. “We were worried that we wouldn’t have the volume of patrons to come and be at the event. And at the same time, we did not want to be the cause of a COVID outbreak.”

This year would have been the 40th anniversary of the Huntingburg festival, which was set for the last weekend in September.

“It was a hard call we had to make,” Flamion said. “But we feel it’s the right call.”

A big concern for the committee was for the nonprofit groups who would have booths at the event. Committee members talked to the organizations to get their perspective about operating at the festival.

“We wanted to see if they were comfortable setting up a booth,” Flamion said, “if their workers felt comfortable coming in to work.”

The answers were mixed. “There were some that said no, they don’t feel comfortable doing that,” Flamion said. “There were some that said yes they would but wanted to know what extra precautions would be taken. And we had some that didn’t see a problem with it.”

Committee members also talked to leaders of the different events held at the festival.

The committee met last week to discuss and weigh the options.

“With all that in mind, we made the executive decision to wait until next year,” Flamion said. “That is a lot of work for a nonprofit volunteer group, to get the supplies they need, and hope that they make money or break even on it. We don’t want to break the bank for any of our organizations.”

Some events will continue separately and will be supported by the festival committee. Those include the Luv 4 Lexi 5K, golf scramble, horseshoe pitching tourney and co-ed volleyball tourney.

The committee is also working on having a drive-thru dinner fundraiser. “We’re still working on those details,” Flamion said.

The plan is to have a big 40th anniversary celebration next year. “Were going to take what we make from the benefit dinner, and use that to help blow it up and make next year’s celebration nice and big,” Flamion said.

Since the Herbstfest is canceled, the community can help support local nonprofit groups that would’ve had a booth through donations. Those include Boy Scouts Troop 181, Friends of Raider Softball, Huntingburg Church of the Nazarene, Huntingburg United Methodist Church, Huntingburg Volunteer Fire Department Auxiliary, Kiwanis Club of Holland, Southridge Cheerleaders, Southridge Football Boosters, Southridge Soccer Boosters, Torre Fuerte Christian Church, Victory Assembly of God, Young Life and YMI.

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