This year’s only “First Friday” event, the fourth annual “The Great Pumpkin Hunt,” brought 50 to 75 new customers into local businesses Friday for the chance at winning a gift basket for the person who could find the most pumpkins and jack-o’-lanterns.

The First Friday events, which occur monthly from spring to fall, had been on hiatus due to COVID-19.

Etc. owner Sherrie Rininger, who along with House to Home owner Kattie Piazza started the First Friday events, said the pumpkin-themed scavenger hunt was a low-risk activity where people could practice appropriate social distancing.

Piazza said the scavenger event is typically her busiest day of the year.

Rininger said the monthly events are a “neat way” for businesses to work together.

“It exposes people to a shop’s products,” she said. “By the time they’ve looked for the pumpkins, they have walked through the whole store.”

Rininger said the pumpkin hunt in years past has brought out people’s competitive attitudes.

“It gets cut-throat after awhile,” she said, but the community-wide event brings people and businesses together.

“Everyone gets involved,” she said.

The participating businesses also included The Ugly Truth Bar & Grill, Java Jungle, High Desert Office Equipment, A Flower Shop N’ More, Radio Shack, The Grubsteak and The Outpost.

“This is a great way for business owners to boost each other’s business,” Rininger said.


Steven Mitchell is a reporter for the Blue Mountain Eagle. Contact him at or 541-575-0710.

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