Allison Moore holds a serving of the dessert she entered in the Harvest Festival that won first prize in the under 18 category. The desserts entered in the contest were sold to people attending the festival. Photos by Susan Cort Johnson

Harvest Festival closes Farmers Market season

The Westwood Farmers Market ended its season with a Harvest Festival Friday, Sept. 27, which ushered in the fall. Festivities included a pumpkin patch, scarecrow contest, dessert contest and a hayride.

Sheri Binswanger, a board member for the Westwood Museum, holds a microphone to provide details on Westwood history during a history tour hayride at the Harvest Festival.

Vendors lined lower Third Street near the Lassen County Visitor Center-Westwood Station selling a wide array of wares including jewelry, tie-dye clothing, books and handmade soaps and lotions. They provided an opportunity for early Christmas shoppers to get a start.

Food vendors offered such items as chili, tacos, caramel apples and baked goods. According to Nicole Staniger, the manager of Westwood Farmers Market, a total of 25 vendors participated in the event.

This included the Lassen County Sheriff’s Department that brought coloring pages and other handouts for children and the Westwood Museum selling history books on the logging town as well as Westwood souvenir items.

Picnic tables set up by the Westwood Community Services District provided a place for people to sit and visit or eat a meal while listening to Relentless, a band from Susanville.

Hay bales and scarecrows provided a spot for a family portrait and the artistry of a face painter was exhibited on the faces of the children attending the event. The hayride was a tour of historic sites of Westwood narrated by Sheri Binswanger, a member of the board of directors for the Westwood Museum.

The hay trailer was pulled by a vehicle owned by the Westwood Community Services District and driven by Joe Johnstun, the assistant manager for the district.

It was truly a community affair with local businesses donating prizes for the contests.

Allison Moore, a 9-year-old from Westwood, was the first place dessert winner in the under 18 category. She received a Scentsy gift basket from Lana Beal and $25 from Sierra Super Stop. Sophia Staniger, an 8-year-old Westwood resident, was the second place winner and took home a $10 gift certificate from Blue Ox Coffee and $20 from Edgewood Realty.

In the adult category, Mel Benny was the first place winner receiving a certificate to Buffalo Chips Pizza and Heather Cristi, second place winner, won a gift certificate from Lassen Hardware and Lumber.

In the Scarecrow Contest the Westwood Jr/Sr High School eighth-grade class taught by Louise Biggs was the first place winner and each student received a pumpkin. The First Baptist Church of Westwood took second place.

Staniger said the family that was to set up a petting zoo had an emergency that kept them from participating this year. A 50/50 drawing to benefit the Farmers Market was won by DC Gipson.

The Friday Night Farmer’s Market is open through the summer months at the corner of Third and Ash streets from 4 to 7 p.m.

It provides an opportunity to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables and products from cottage industries.