OMSP’s annual Harvest Festival set for Oct. 12

PELHAM – The time has come once again for Oak Mountain State Park’s Harvest Festival.

The event is set to take place Saturday, Oct. 12, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Terrace Drive day use area. Residents near and far are invited to enjoy music, hay rides, canoe and paddle boats, a bouncy house and inflatable slide, food, games, face painting, shopping with local vendors and more.

The Alabama Wildlife Center will be at the festival with a variety of their glove trained education raptors for guests to meet. Education ambassadors from the Oak Mountain Interpretive Center are also set to attend. Guests will have chanced to meet snakes, turtles and other native residents of Oak Mountain State Park. These animals will be at the festival all day.

Ponies from the Rusted Roof Barn will be available for pony rides until 2:30 p.m. Pony rides will be $5 per ride for kids for ages 3-12. Cricket, the miniature Unicorn, will also be on site for pictures for $1 each. This year, to help with line wait times, the Rusted Roof barn will have a “fast pass” option. This vendor accepts cash only.

The Alabama Mineral and Lapidary Society is a non-profit club that will be on-site letting kids pan for gems in a kiddie pool. The kids will also touch/look/learn about minerals and rocks found naturally in the ecosystem and get goody bags full of minerals/fossils/rocks/gemstones to take home. Smaller children will have opportunities to paint rocks. There will be a geode cracking station so the kids can see first-hand how geodes are structured. Geodes are $5 or $10 depending on size, and the kids get to keep their geode once they have opened it. The goody bags are $2 each and the gem panning is $2 per bag. Rock painting is free but donation will be accepted. There will also be a cab machine set up to demonstrate how to turn rocks into cabochons.

Mountain High Outfitters Is joining the festival again this year to provide equipment and gear demonstrations. They will also have the latest outdoor gear, games and other items for sale. They are also bringing out their Rock Wall for guests to enjoy.

Regular park entrance fees apply for this event. Kids 3 and under, military and veterans are admitted into the park for free. The cost is $2 for ages 4-11 and those 62 and older, and $5 for ages 12-61. Annual park passes are valid.

Parking is free and available in the park office lot, the beach parking lot, the multi-use field, south trail head lot and the playground parking lot.

All of the other fun activities offered at OMSP, such as mountain bike and hiking trails, archery and guided horseback rides through the park, will still be available for guests to take advantage of.