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Sunday, September 11, 2011

Fall festival fun

From pumpkins to cream puffs and tractor pulls to oyster shucking, a harvest sampler




By Necee Regis Globe Correspondent / September 11, 2011


When fall arrives the air gets crisp and visions of pumpkins, apples, and hayrides replace those of bathing suits and beaches. Here is a list of festivals in New England featuring tractor pulls and Ferris wheels, farm animals and petting zoos, traditional crafts and contemporary music, plus wine, oysters, garlic, cream puffs, beer, cider, and more. Don’t think of it as the end of summer, think of it as the beginning of the harvest season.The Big E, Sept. 16-Oct. 2, West Springfield
The Big E Cream Puff and the Craz-E Burger are only two reasons to visit The Big E, the largest fall festival in the region. This 17-day extravaganza features carnival rides, a circus under the big top, Mardi Gras parade, reconstructed 19th-century New England village, shopping, crafts, live entertainment (Reba McEntire tops this year’s roster), and foods from around the world like shepherd’s pie, corn cake pulled pork muffins, and deep-fried bacon-wrapped hotdogs. Rooted in an agricultural tradition, the festival also offers all you would expect at an enormous country fair, including competitions for prize-winning animals, and the largest livestock show in the East. Demonstrations of spinning, weaving, and milking help connect the dots between animals and commerce. Equine lovers will enjoy the Eastern States Exposition horse show. 1305 Memorial Ave., 413-737-2443, adults $15, 6-12 $10, 5 and under free. Special events priced separately.
www.thebige.comREAD MORE:http://www.boston.com/travel/explorene/articles/2011/09/11/13_fall_festivals_in_new_england/

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