Get ready for a day of medieval merriment and autumnal activities as Punkin Chunkin’ returns to Ely. This year’s celebration promises to be bigger and better than ever before, with a diverse range of entertainment and festivities for all ages.
After the eclipse ends, the Ely Lions invite you to attend the 10th annual Punkin Chunkin. Started in 2013 as a modest fall festival, the event has grown to become one of the region’s biggest events of autumn and, with hundreds of attendees, it is the Lions’ premier project. This year you will find yourself transported 500 years back in time, as Punkin Chunkin’ Goes Medieval on October 14, 2023, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., at Veterans’ (Courthouse) Park in downtown Ely. And, while there is plenty of food and activities on which to spend money, admission remains free.
With a full-blown Renaissance Faire theme, there is enough medieval merriment for both peasants and royalty. Knights in shining armor, from the Reno War Rams armored combat team, battle in no holds barred bouts using authentic medieval armor and weaponry. Skilled blacksmiths display their medieval forging techniques. R.E.A.C.H., Utah’s catapult crew, demonstrate medieval siege craft. Ely Children’s Community Theater will perform adaptations of both The Merchant of Venice and Othello. Prizes are awarded in a medieval themed cosplay contest for humans.
The focal point of Punkin Chunkin’ has always been the thrilling pumpkin-launching contraptions that send pumpkins soaring through the air. It’s a sight to behold as pumpkins of all sizes take flight, and competitors vie for distance and accuracy in this unique event.
But Punkin Chunkin’ is not just about pumpkins. Attendees can also look forward to a delicious assortment of food options and live music to set the mood. For the younger crowd, there will be bounce houses and exciting games to keep them entertained throughout the day. Janet VanCamp returns with her own brand of gypsy fortune telling. 4H hosts an archery range. Ely Weaving and More demonstrates spinning and weaving. Fairies entertain children with bubbles, courtesy of the White Pine County Library. White Pine High School Drama hosts a royal court of nobility. But, beware, or you may just end up in the stocks… or worse.
In addition to the Renaissance Faire attractions, numerous vendors from across the west will be selling fine medieval and modern wares. Eat like royalty, with nearly a half dozen food vendors on hand to satisfy your craving for food and drink. Bounce houses and carnival games entertain kids for hours. Pets will compete in a costume contest organized by B.A.A.R.X. Pumpkins fall from JW Electric’s Bucket Truck. KDSS 92.7 FM provides music. The perpetually crowd-pleasing Thriller flash mob returns courtesy of Ely Learning Bridge Charter School. After the event, the White Pine County Chamber of Commerce’s Eclipse Pub Crawl kicks off with drink cups available only at Punkin Chunkin’. And, of course, it wouldn’t be Punkin Chunkin’ without the pumpkin throwing contest, with more prizes to be awarded.
The celestial showstopper for this year’s Punkin Chunkin’ is the annular eclipse, which will mark the commencement of the festivities. All festivities will officially begin after the eclipse has passed at 10 a.m.
Sponsors of this year’s event include Beta Sigma Phi, KGHM Mining, the Nevada Northern Railway, Pattern Energy, White Pine Aquatics and White Pine County Tourism and Recreation.
The Ely Lions Club was established in 1925, making it the second oldest club in Nevada. Lions members are community members who join together to improve our neighborhoods, state, nation and world. Lions’ most well-known service involves vision care through the providing of eye screenings and financial assistance to obtain glasses. Ely Lions also support various local causes, including Little League, Helping Hands, Inner City Slickers, the White Pine County Senior Center and Library, Community Theater, White Pine Schools, the Food Bank, the Division of Child and Family Services, the Children’s Art Festival, Relay for Life, the White Pine Public Museum and other similar causes.
For more information visit: www.facebook.com/elylionsclub