Fall activities in the ‘Burg


Casey Rothgeb

Ellensburg’s “The Patch” will be open this fall, complying with COVID-19 regulations

Jared Galanti, Staff Reporter

The sights and sounds of fall are once again upon the city of Ellensburg. Leaves are falling off the trees, pumpkins are being displayed and the overall feeling of school starting is here once again. 

Hilary Huffman, owner of The Patch, the local U-Pick pumpkin patch, said COVID-19 has definitely had an effect on her farm. 

“We also usually have the haunted forest going on Friday and Saturday nights,” Huffman said. ”We decided not to do it this year because we couldn’t give it the time and the resources that it needed to keep everybody safe.”

However, she said there aren’t any major changes happening to The Patch this year, and only people who have been there before will notice. Some changes include the petting zoo becoming a “looking zoo” and a buried treasure corn game, where kids swim through corn kernels in a 10-foot diameter trough, being closed because they aren’t able to sanitize the container the kids swim in. 

Just as places outside campus are having to alter their plans, activities on campus have changed as well.

Katie Doonan, a special events coordinator for Student Activities, said the annual Haunting at Central that happens in the SURC every year is being moved to a virtual setting. The event that had activities such as moonlight bowling, escape rooms and a zombie zone is going to look very different this year.

“As of right now we aren’t allowed to host it indoors,” Doonan said. ”We’re taking a whole different turn.”

Activities for the virtual event include a caricature artist and two escape rooms. One escape room is going to have a zombie theme while the other will have a wizard theme. 

Avery Cortinas, also a special event coordinator for Student Activities, said some of the activities they host for the city of Ellensburg will also be a little different.

“Around Halloween we would offer Boo Central as an event for the community,” Cortinas said. “We would have booths set up and the community would bring kids and we would have an indoor trick-or-treating.”

However, they had to adjust the way they give out candy this year. Cortinas said they are partnering with the Ellensburg Downtown Association to create an event called Halloweek in which there will be a candy pickup station for families with kids to pick up pre-packaged bags of candy.

Cortinas said student volunteers are needed to come to the event in costume to line University Way in a parade, as a way to “help make the event even more special for the kids who show up with their families.”