Hanging Out with Scarecrows in Stevensville


In October 2010, my husband Alan and I were new boomers in Missoula. On a weekend drive to photograph the fall color, we traveled south on Highway 93 making the left turn onto the Stevensville Cutoff Road. Golden leaves decorated the trees on the banks of the Bitterroot River as we crossed over the bridge on our way into Stevensville.

“Stop the car,” I suddenly screamed

“Honey what’s wrong?” Alan asked as he pulled over to the shoulder of the road.

“Grab your camera,” I told him as I jumped out of the car and jaywalked across the road to where dozens of scarecrows lined the sidewalk. They were dressed as nurses, cub scouts and fishermen. One well-endowed scarecrow wore a red dress and carried a purse. We had discovered the Stevensville Scarecrow Festival.

Long time Missoulans will have to forgive my enthusiasm but this boomer city girl had never seen a scarecrow festival. In fact, I had no idea that such a thing existed. After some online research, I found that scarecrow festivals are common throughout rural America.

Starting this Friday, October 5, 2012, the Stevensville Scarecrow Festival, sponsored by the Stevensville Art and Sculpture Society, returns for two weeks (ends October 13, 2012). Most of the fun occurs over the weekend, during the People’s Choice voting. Stop by on Friday or Saturday to view the scarecrows and vote for your favorite display. Want to know who wins the contest? Meet at 3:00 p.m., Saturday, October 6, 2012, on the Forest Service lawn when Mark Heyka of KECI Channel 13 Missoula hosts the Award Ceremony.

New to the festival this year—a Living Statue display on Main Street, Friday night from 5:00 until 9:00 p.m.  This I’ve got to see.

So, hop in your car and head south to Stevensville for an autumn event that’s easy on the budget—the Scarecrow Festival is free—and a treat for your sense of humor.

If you go:

Stevensville Scarecrow Festival
October 5 – 13, 2012
Main Street in Stevensville
Cost: Free

Have you attended the Stevensville Scarecrow Festival? Post a comment to share your favorite memory. This is one of my favorite Bitterroot Valley fall events.

 Archive of all  Boomers in Missoula blogs.

Donna L. Hull writes about active travel for baby boomers at My Itchy Travel Feet, The Baby Boomer’s Guide to Travel. She is also the author of My Itchy Travel Feet, Breathtaking Adventure Vacation Ideas, available at Amazon Kindle, Nook and iTunes.


Flatlander to mountaineer could be the title of Donna Hull’s latest boomer adventure. The freelance writer and her photographer husband Alan (both baby boomers) have recently relocated from Arizona to the Missoula area for full-time living in the most beautiful spot in the world. Follow along as Donna writes about Western Montana travel fun that you may have forgotten about. Or, you might discover a new travel adventure waiting just down the road.

Donna Hull publishes My Itchy Travel Feet, The Baby Boomer’s Guide to Travel., the internet’s go-to site for active boomer travelers. Donna is also the author of My Itchy Travel Feet, Breathtaking Adventure Vacation Ideas.