Weekend Entertainment | Pumpkin Walk and Polka Music

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – One of Youngstown’s coolest traditions is the Pumpkin Walk at Twilight.

Every year on a Sunday evening in October, thousands of people walk through Fellows Riverside Gardens as day turns to night, marveling at the hundreds of flickering jack-o-lanterns that line the path.

Some of the carvings are works of art; some, not so much. But the overall effect of the candlelight and grinning pumpkins makes it a unique event.

The Pumpkin Walk at Twilight returns this Sunday from 4 to 8 p.m. Admission is free, and so is the limited parking at the site, but attendees should expect to park at least a block away and walk.

Fellows is at 123 McKinley Ave., off Mahoning Avenue, on the West Side.

Polka is another local tradition – and so is the occasional PBS Western Reserve miniseries that features the Chardon Polka Band.

Another such miniseries – “The World According to Polka” – will start this Friday at 8:30 p.m.

In this one, Chardon Polka Band leader Jake Kouwe again plays the host and takes viewers on a trip each week to visit the people and places of the polka world.

As always, Kouwe sets a fun tone with his zany but informative style.

This Friday’s episode was shot at Westside Bowl in Youngstown and features Akron rock guitar great Michael Weber as a guest.

The CPB’s past miniseries include “Polka Across America” and “A Polka Christmas with the Chardon Polka Band.”

By the way, polka favorite Mollie B will return to the Avon Oaks ballroom in Girard at 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 14. Click HERE.

Here is a look at some other highlights this weekend – traditional and otherwise.

Blood, Sweat and Tears will perform at 730 p.m. tonight (Oct. 12) at Orr Auditorium, on the campus of Westminster College in New Wilmington, Pa. For tickets, call 724 946 7354 or click HERE.

BST was huge back in the late 1960s and early 1970s, with its jazzy rock and hits like “Spinning Wheel,” “And When I Die,” “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy,” “Hi-De-Ho” and “Lucretia Mac Evil.”

Then the band dropped out of the picture. Exactly why that happened is the topic of a documentary film released this year, “What the Hell Happened to Blood, Sweat & Tears?”

In a nutshell, the band took an ill-advised concert trip behind the Iron Curtain in 1970 that resulted in heavy-handed treatment of fans by police. Its reputation among the youth culture was ruined.

BST, which was one of the biggest bands in the world at the time, has since claimed that it was blackmailed into going on the trip.

Learn more about the fascinating story HERE.

Youngstown State University Theatre’s winning production of “Zombie Prom” is entering its second and final weekend, with performances at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday at Ford Theater, inside Bliss Hall. Click HERE.

The annual Ghost Walk in downtown Warren starts its first weekend, with tours every 15 minutes from 6 to 9 p.m Friday and Saturday. Participants meet at the First Presbyterian Church of Warren. For tickets, click HERE.

The Youngstown Symphony Orchestra will present “Latin Fire,” a pops concert with guest conductor Francisco Noya, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 14, at Powers Auditorium. Click HERE.

Bring the family to Food Trucks and Football, a free event from 3 to 10 p.m. Saturday at Wean Park in downtown Youngstown. There will be food trucks and other vendors, a DJ and the Notre Dame-University of Southern California game on a big screen. Bring a blanket or lawn chairs.

The Price Is Right Live returns to Powers Auditorium in Youngsotwn at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday. Come on down! Click HERE.

RocOpraNatra is a trio of vocalists who each have their own specialty. One has a rock voice, the other opera, and the third is a crooner (the “Natra” stands for Sinatra). The act will be at Packard Music Hall at 7 p.m. Tuesday. Click HERE.

For a complete look at everything going on in the Mahoning Valley, check out The List.

Pictured at top: Jake Kouwe, Michael Weber and Brian Brazier are shown performing at Westside Bowl in Youngstown in the first episode of “The World According to Polka,” which airs Friday at 8:30 p.m. on PBS Western Reserve.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.