Tolay Fall Festival 2015: Oct. 17-18 and Oct. 24-25

October 6, 2015 in News

The 2015 Tolay Fall Festival presents two weekends of old-time, nature-based fun the weekends of Oct. 17-18 and Oct. 24-25. The Tolay Fall Festival is a seasonal celebration connecting visitors with the beauty and history of Tolay Lake Regional Park in the hills southeast east of Petaluma. Activities are low-key, hands-on and educational by design. Fall Festival visitors can: 

  • Explore the “Nighttime Creatures Barn” with its live exhibits of snakes, birds of prey, tide pool animals, and taxidermied wildlife. Venture into the darkened “Creepy Crawly Room,” where tarantulas and scorpions glow under black lights.
  • Take a hayride to a farm field to find the perfect pumpkin.
  • Visit a replica of a Native American village with kotchas made of reeds and bark.
  • Try farm activities like wool-carding, candle-dipping and corn husk doll-making or enter the World-Record Pumpkin-Seed Spitting Contest.
  • Join experts in archery and astronomy for interactive lessons. Compete in gunnysack races, navigate a straw maze, and pet barnyard animals.
  • Sample local foods and desserts or bring a picnic to enjoy at the park. 

Tolay Lake Regional Park is at 5869 Lakeville Highway, at the end of Cannon Lane. Festival hours are 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $5 for teens and adults and $3 for children 12 and younger. (All activities inside the festival are free.) Regional Parks’ members get free, one-time admission for two adults and two children and free parking. Parking for non-members is $7.

Tolay Lake Regional Park was a farm and pumpkin patch before it was acquired by the Sonoma County Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District in 2005 and transferred to Sonoma County Regional Parks. With community input, Regional Parks is developing a master plan that will suggest how to fully open the park to the public while protecting its natural and cultural resources. In the interim, the park is open weekends through a free permit program.

The Tolay Fall Festival is open to the general public the weekends of Oct. 17-18 and Oct. 24-25 and to school groups on Oct. 15-16 and Oct. 21-23. Approximately 7,000 students are scheduled to attend the festival this year.

For more information, visit sonomacountyparks.orgor call Regional Parks at (707) 565-2041. (High-resolution photos available.) 


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