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Chamber’s Fall Festival Draws Receptive Crowd
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There were plenty of free activities, fun and games for kids offered at the Oakdale Fall Festival, staged in the downtown area on Saturday, Oct. 21. It was hosted by the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce. Marg Jackson/The Leader

Weather conditions were picture perfect for a day outside Saturday, and a large crowd took advantage of the cool breeze and feel of autumn to enjoy the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce Fall Festival.

The chamber hosted this first-time event in the downtown area on Saturday, Oct. 21 with activities running from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Action was centered on North First and North Second avenues, with East E Street also lined with some vendors in between the avenues.

Vendors of all varieties turned out in force as well, offering everything from tie-dyed clothing to fruits and vegetables, homemade soaps, lotions, jewelry and more. There were also plenty of fun activities in the Kids Zone, music, demonstrations by the Congressional Gunfighters of America, animal adoptions by the Oakdale Animal Shelter, a petting zoo, pony rides, face painting and the chance to tour and learn about the Gilton Solid Waste trucks.

Oakdale Chamber of Commerce CEO Cherilyn Bairos said she couldn’t have been happier with the turnout and the event itself. She gave kudos to organizers of the recently concluded Morning Market, which ran for several months downtown each Saturday morning, as paving the way to get the crowd out on a Saturday. She also noted a newfound appreciation for how hard it is to pull off an event of this size.

“We want to definitely thank Valley First Credit Union for being our presenting sponsor,” Bairos said. “There’s food, a Kids’ Zone, another thing that we did is with the local businesses, if they had a business on First or Second, we let them have their booth space out there so we didn’t cover up their business.”

A classic truck, on loan from Sons Farm Fresh, was decorated in a fall theme, set up for families to use as a backdrop for photos.

Among those taking advantage of that opportunity was the Gromm family, with mom Sarah and dad Zeb and posing with twin daughters Aubrey and Annie, 5, and Zoe, 7, at the fest.

Visiting from nearby Modesto where they live, Sarah said her parents are Oakdale residents so they came to enjoy the day with them and also all the events that were going on as part of the Fall Fest.

“This was very family-friendly,” Sarah said. “Everyone has been so friendly.”

The Chamber also had a couple of drawings, one for a large screen TV, an Oakdale themed gift basket and a $100 gift card to Bistro 120. They also had sales of tickets for a drawing planned in December, with proceeds to help finance roof repairs at the Chamber. They are raffling off a golf cart or $6000 cash; tickets are $100 apiece and can be purchased at the Chamber office.

“Over 45 vendors, this is really awesome,” Bairos summarized. “Everybody came out and supported us.”

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The Gilton Solid Waste truck was a big draw at the Fall Festival hosted by the Oakdale Chamber of Commerce on Saturday, Oct. 21, with kids getting the chance to take a seat behind the wheel. Marg Jackson/The Leader
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A noontime performance by the Congressional Gunfighters of America drew quite the crowd at Saturday’s Fall Festival and here, Eric Leintz of Concord did a little gun spinning as well as offered a safety lesson for onlookers. Marg Jackson/The Leader