The 54th annual Barnesville Pumpkin Festival is expected to bring thousands of visitors to downtown Barnesville. 

And visitors do come to see the growing and harvesting of pumpkins and other fall harvests. Wikipedia estimates that approximately 100,000 visitors attend the festival over the four-days. 

Maybe you’ll grab some pumpkin ice cream or try your hand at hog calling, but the main goal of this festival is to put pumpkins front and center. And they do just that with the annual weighing of  pumpkins to find the real "King Pumpkin." The weigh-off takes place Wednesday, Sept. 20 at 6 p.m. in downtown Barnesville. Last year, the King Pumpkin was grown by Todd and Donna Skinner of Barnesville, and weighed in a record-breaking 1,739 pounds. 

This year, the Cook family will be the honorary ribbon cutters. The late Jim Cook served many years on the festival committee, as well as his wife, Evelyn. Evelyn and their daughters, Rose Grear and Beth Louden will cut the ribbon to officially open the festival on Sept. 21.

Along those lines, longtime supporter and festival committee member Doc Householder will serve as the 2017 Barnesville Pumpkin Festival Parade Grand Marshal on Saturday, Sept. 23.

The festival, which runs Sept. 21-24, features many contests including: Hog calling, pie baking, home decorating, fiddle/?mandolin contest, peddle tractor pull for children, pumpkin pie eating, pumpkin rolling, talent show, pumpkin mascot, fudge contest, pet show, tall tale, beard and mustache judging, and tobacco spitting to name a few.

Other events include a Queens’ pageant, a 5K run/?walk on Saturday, "Ride All Night For One Price" wristband for $10 on Friday night after a specific time, and of course, the huge Pumpkin Parade on Saturday starting at 2 p.m. at Barnesville High School.

There will also be live bands performing Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.

To learn more about the Barnesville Pumpkin Festival or to see a complete schedule of events, visit www.barnesvillepumpkinfestival.com.