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franklin county times
PHOTO BY LAUREN WESTER Tharptown Elementary School’s fall festival begins Oct. 5 at 5:30 p.m. and features the second annual Haunted Gym that will also be open Oct. 6 from 8-11 p.m.

Tharptown plans community fall festival

It’s about to get spooky at Tharptown Elementary School’s annual fall festival.

Oct. 5 the campus and gym at TES will be filled with games, food and haunted rooms for all to enjoy from 5:30-8 p.m. with the haunted gym being continued Oct. 6 from 8-11 p.m.

Lisa Gann, EL resource teacher and chairperson over the festival, said the school started working on the festival in September, and everyone can’t wait for it to begin Thursday.

“We’re all very excited about it. It’s a big thing every year,” she said.

The festival is one of the school’s biggest fundraisers. Gann explained that the proceeds will go toward basic supplies the school needs, like paper towels and mops, as well as technology like iPads and a Chromebook cart.

The festival is free admission for all visitors, but to participate in the games one must buy tickets for $1 apiece. Gann said activities like bingo and the cake walk will cost two tickets, and most of the other games will be one ticket. Some of the games will be set up like an arcade, she said, where participants earn tickets when they win and turn in those tickets for prizes.

“We have so many donations for prizes from so many different people and businesses that I can’t even name them all,” Gann said.

Gann praised the community’s involvement, including the numerous sponsors whose information will be displayed on banners at the event.

One draw for Tharptown’s festival is the chicken stew available for purchase. Gann said two Tharptown teachers cook it over an open fire all day, with the ingredients donated from various local stores.

“We make around 55 gallons, but we always run out quickly,” she said.

Last year the festival’s attendance reached more than 900 people, and Gann said she hopes it continues to grow this year.

This is the second year of the Haunted Gym, which will be chock full of various frightening rooms for participants to explore. According to Gann, there will be a clown room, a haunted forest and a spider tunnel, among many other features. Admission into the Haunted Gym will be $5 the first night; the next night’s fee is yet to be determined.

For those not inclined to experience the Haunted Gym, the festival will offer various games like darts, basketball, a toy walk and a fortune teller, along with the cake walk and bingo.

“It gives the community a sense of belonging – like we’re a family,” Gann said. “We couldn’t do it without the families and parents that participate and help make it such a success every year.”

 

 

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