Great Essex Scarecrow Festival Returns for Fall Season, Benefits Council on Aging


The Great Essex Scarecrow Festival began in 2020 as a fundraiser for the Essex Council on Aging, and the Friends of the Essex Council on Aging encourage Essex residents to participate in the festival again this fall. 

Last October, scarecrows lined the streets of Essex. Painted burlap faces smiled from front lawns. The Friends of the Essex COA sold over 80 scarecrow kits, Essex resident Dawn Burnham said.

Scarecrows at Town Hall held a sign reminding people to vote. Other creative displays included pirate scarecrows in a boat, a bride, a chef, and an angel, Burnham said.

Essex resident Jessica Palm decided to continue her display after the end of the fall season. She has changed its garments monthly for nearly a year. 

Since October, Palmer’s scarecrow has worn many outfits, including a Santa costume, a New Year's outfit, and a pink dress for Valentine’s Day. Her eight-year-old daughter favors the scarecrow’s Easter ensemble, which features a pair of rabbit ears. Currently, the scarecrow dons a bathing suit, water wings, a snorkel, and flippers.

The community is fond of Palmer’s year-round decorations, she said, so she keeps the scarecrow up to make people smile as they drive by.

For residents who want to participate in the fall spirit, scarecrow kits, which include a hand-painted burlap face and a wooden T-Frame, cost $25.00 and are available for purchase from the Friends of the Essex Council on Aging through Sept. 1.