Pahrump Valleys’ 2021 Harvest Fall Festival

Every year Pahrump Valley, NV hosts an annual Fall Fest celebrating the town and the season to come. This started 56 years ago, bringing the town together for decades on top of decades. This brings the community together for a long weekend to remember the origins of our town.


Trinity Mell, News Editor

56 years ago pioneers, Tim Hafen, Bob and Jaquie Ruud, Ron and Charlotte Floyd, put together the first Harvest Festival, (1965). 37 years after that, the name was changed to Pahrump Fall Festival. The founders of the festival wanted “outsiders” of town to come and enjoy the fest, which worked, and many people who have never been to Pahrump came to sell goods and items of value. They make these treasures themselves and sell them to festival attendees. This includes delicious food from different cultural backgrounds as well. 

The Harvest Fest derives its name from Pahrump’s history as a largely agrarian community after its founding. Among the most popular crops harvested was cotton due to its high value. As the years went by, the desert got progressively drier over time, and the environment could no longer foster the crops and their needs. This eventually led to the absence of cotton and other water intensive crops being no longer grown in the community. Things have changed a lot since then, subdivisions have been added, more business came to town, the community has become less agrarian, hence why we changed the name for the future years to come.  

This year, (2021), it was a struggle for county officials to come up with ideas on how to execute the festival. Last year, (2020), the festival was cancelled due to Covid-19. This took a toll on the funding for the future festivals. During the 2021 festival people had a blast making the most out of the $40 wristbands. Of course you could always buy separate tickets. The infamous “Ring of Fire” was set up as well as the “Zipper”. Though popular rides were there, they did not set up some fan favorite rides, such as the “Typhoon” as well as them changing the, “Sizzler” to the, “Twizzler”, the dragon ride to the, “Berry-Go-Round” and even downgraded the ferris wheel. While people were upset about the replacement of these rides they added some new ones that were a hit. They had a mechanical bull, the “Tornado,¨ and the “Octopus.” Despite Covid still affecting the town, everyone came together and made the fair happen. Everyone had a blast in spite of the ride downgrade, the community made the most of what they had. 

Facing the difficulties with money because of the global pandemic, our town remembered why the festival takes place. To remind us of those who came before, the crops we used to have and the loving community we have today. As the town comes together for the few days the festival is put on, we make connections with others that are not replaceable and will never be forgotten. The new-comers to town that you relate with, knowing you will not see them again, you never forget them. That is the whole purpose of the fair, connecting with others. Native or not to our small town, anyone is welcome to come and enjoy the festivities we offer at the Annual Pahrump Valley Fall Festival.