Georgetown Fall Harvest Festival brings seasonal fun to DC
Market supported local small businesses and brings fall-themed food, drinks and activities to attendees
Local small businesses and district residents alike had an opportunity to come together to celebrate the start of autumn at the Georgetown Fall Harvest Festival on Oct. 15 and 16.
Participants enjoyed sidewalk shopping, outdoor dining and fall-themed programming. In the spirit of the season, the market sold caramel apples and had pumpkin and face painting. Rachel Shank, the executive director at Georgetown Main Street, organized the festival in response to small local businesses asking for a fall-themed market to support their growth.
“Georgetown Main Street said, ‘We are here for you, we will host this event for you,’” Shank said.
Shank organized the street market following the same structure as the popular annual Georgetown French Market, which Georgetown Main Street holds every spring in partnership with the Business Improvement District.
Several vendors that participated have storefronts in Georgetown and benefitted from the exposure the Fall Harvest Festival brought to their shop. Some of the participating small businesses included L’Enfant Gallery, Patisserie Poupon and Pretty Chic DC. Shank also brought in larger brands like SCOUT Bags, a national company whose headquarters is in Georgetown.
Shank sold caramel apples from her own stand so she could interact with attendees and offer them a fall treat.
“We wanted something that was fall themed, but that no one else would be selling so we wouldn't be competitive,” she said.
Families and students alike attended the market. Children enjoyed the live music from local artists and baked goods from Patisserie Poupon. As autumn leaves decorated the sidewalk, adults enjoyed the alcoholic beverage options at Bacchus Wine Cellar.
Micehla Badro and Elif Kamber, two students from Georgetown University, said they both enjoyed the festival.
“Me and my friends wanted something fall-related, so we thought to look up events on Eventbrite and we saw this,” Badro said.
“It just felt like it was a good opportunity and it's a beautiful day,” Kamber said.
This was the inaugural Georgetown Fall Harvest Festival, but Shank plans to continue it as an annual October tradition. Pop-up markets in D.C. give local brick-and-mortar businesses the opportunity to stand out amongst larger businesses and corporations and are a great opportunity for community members, young and old, to come together to celebrate the changing of seasons, allowing residents to shop small and sustainably.