The leaves on the trees are changing, harvest decor is being put up, and organizers are expecting thousands to visit the 27th annual Pumpkin Fest, planned Saturday, Oct. 12, from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Three Lakes High School.

The event attracts arts and crafts exhibitors from across the Midwest to display at the 100 indoor and outdoor booths. Included in the fest is a mini farmers market and the North Woods’ largest bake sale. A wide range of homemade food items, including fresh-baked cinnamon rolls made by volunteer bakers from Eagle River’s Abundant Life Church, will be available. 

A popular sellout each year is the savory pumpkin soup served at lunch along with several other soup and food choices. Attendees are urged to try pies, offered by the slice or whole pie, and locally made caramel apples.

A raffle featuring a 100th anniversary autographed foot­ball donated by the Green Bay Packers organization, wines from the Three Lakes Winery, and baskets of spirits with donations from the Three Lakes Tavern League are among the prizes. Tickets will be sold the day of the event and winners need not be present to win.

The Three Lakes Winery will conduct cranberry bog and winery tours departing from the event. Visit tlwinery.com for more information and advance tickets.

Sponsored by the Three Lakes Fire Department Auxiliary, all proceeds from the popular event support the volunteer fire department and the community. 

“The auxiliary works year-round to plan the event,” said auxiliary President Linda Remington. “And we have a small army of dedicated volunteers who, each year, help execute the event. It can be a lot of fun and we welcome folks to donate a baked item or work at the event to join in the success Pumpkin Fest has seen for 27 years of supporting the community.”

According to Remington, over the years the auxiliary has enhanced the fire department with the purchase of updated safety equipment and other contributions in order to keep firefighters at the ready. A recent donation was a drone capable of aiding in life-threatening searches undertaken by the department. Victims of home fires and other community causes receive Three Lakes Fire Department Auxiliary financial support.

Parking for Pumpkin Fest is free, as is admission. A nonperishable donation for the food pantry is appreciated.