Photo by Amy McIntyre / Community members take part in a pumpkin carving contest at the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center in 2021.

Photo by Amy McIntyre / Community members take part in a pumpkin carving contest at the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center in 2021.

PAFAC to host family-friendly festival

Celebration of Shadows set for Saturday

PORT ANGELES — The Port Angeles Fine Arts Center will host the Celebration of Shadows Fall Festival, a family-friendly event, on Saturday, with one workshop set Friday.

This second annual event marks the return of pumpkin carving workshops, followed by free evening festivities that include a pumpkin walk and contest through Webster’s Woods, a spooky reading in the courtyard, the opportunity for an evening visit to the gallery for the latest exhibition Turning Point, and an outdoor screening of the movie “Coco” in the meadow.

The Mask Making workshop will be led by Emily McHugh, co-director of String and Shadow Puppet Theater, over two days, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday and from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday.

Participants will learn the basics of paper-mache mask-making, taking their own mask creations from design to completion, learning puppet-building techniques of cardboard construction, clay sculpture and painting along the way. The cost is $30 for center members, $35 for non-members.

Two sessions of a Pumpkin Carving Workshop will be led by local artist Nathan Shields from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. The cost is $8 per person.

Advanced registration for all workshops is highly encouraged as space is limited.

Those who can’t make the workshops can still submit their pumpkin to the Pumpkin Carving Contest for a chance to win a prize basket with gifts from local businesses, organizers note. Prizes have been donated by the Port Angeles Winter Ice Village, Hurricane Ridge Association, Brown’s Outdoor, Welly’s Ice Cream, Anime Kat, The Wharf, and Country Aire Natural Foods.

Community members can drop off pumpkins at the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center at 1203 E. Lauridsen Blvd., from 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday to be entered, with a $5-per-entry cost.

“It’s always fun to see the creativity that people put into their pumpkin carvings and having them line the paths adds so much seasonal spirit to Webster’s Woods,” said Rachel Storck, community engagement director at the center.

“We also have incredible prizes this year thanks to all the local businesses that donated, so we encourage everyone to give it a try and submit a pumpkin.”

The Celebration of Shadows Festival itself will begin at 5 p.m., when festival goers can visit an art station and get snacks and drinks from Fogtown Coffee and Angeles Brewing.

Curated by the Olympic Peninsula Authors, the “What the Hex!?” reading will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the courtyard.

The selection of 13 spooky short stories and poems will include pumpkin fairies, ghosts and pirates. All readings are suitable for children. “What the Hex!?” authors reading their stories or poems include Steve Workman, Scott Thornhill, Chris Kleinfelder, Carol Rich, Joan Enoch, Judy Duncan, Ben Hertel, Dianne Knox, Mary Alice Boulter, Linda Gavin, Louise Wallace, Eva McGinnis and Laura Garrard.

Starting at 6 p.m., attendees are welcome to stroll through the pumpkin walk where submitted pumpkins will line the park paths. Three judges will peruse the entries and decide on the winning pumpkins based on design, creativity and skill of execution. For $1 per vote, anyone can cast a vote for their favorite pumpkin. At 7 p.m., winners of the Adult, Kids, and People’s Choice will be announced at the meadow stage before the movie.

Finally, all are invited to join in the meadow for an outdoor screening of the movie “Coco” (rated PG), beginning at 7 p.m. Bring chairs, blankets and sweaters to snuggle in and follow the magical adventures of a boy named Miguel as he journeys into the Land of the Dead to seek forgiveness from his ancestors.

These evening events are free and open to the public with donations welcome to support future arts enrichment programs at PAFAC.

For more information about the Celebration of Shadows Festival and to register for a workshop, visit pafac.org/shadows-festival.html.

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