Sunflower Festival helps bring sun and fun during pandemic

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LEHIGHTON, CARBON COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — A local Christmas tree farm changed seasons so to speak and their innovation turned out to be a big summer hit.

Cars were backed up along Route 902 in Lehighton on Sunday with people eager to enjoy some sun and some sunflowers. Yenser’s Tree Farm held its first sunflower festival. Owners say they they’re amazed by the turnout.

“Our parking lot has never ever before been full. We are primarily a Christmas tree farm operating since the ’70s, and we opened a pumpkin patch five years ago and a fall fest. We have never had a full lot before and today we are over flowing,” owner Jan Wentz said.

Owners tell Eyewitness News the field was packed with ready to pick flowers on Saturday. Now, on the second day, the only flowers that are left are those that are still blooming.

“Even if there’s not a whole lot there, it’s fun with the family. That’s what counts,” Erin Szczechowski of Williamsport said.

“I thought it was beautiful to see the sunflowers in the garden with the view and the Christmas trees,” festival attendee Aiden said.

People could pick and take pictures with sunflowers at no cost. Tickets were sold for hay rides and other activities. Szczechowski traveled from Williamsport to enjoy the festival with her family. She says it’s important to get out of the house, especially during the pandemic.

“We’ve been cooped up for so long, we gotta get out get some fresh air. De-stress from work, see your family, see some great land, fresh air and it’s beautiful,” Szczechowski said.

“We’re very blessed and thankful to be doing this and to be offering sunflowers which seems like a sign of hope during this time and happiness,” Wentz said.

Wentz says they plan to hold the festival again next year.

“We’ll certainly be planting many more sunflowers, possibly spreading it out over many weekends just to make it more enjoyable for everybody,” Wentz said.

The Sunflower Festival ends at 8 p.m. Sunday.

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