Pumpkin spice is back, and autumn is here. It’s the perfect season to enjoy exploring Clermont’s shopping and dining establishments – and to see how many one-of-a-kind scarecrows you can find decorating storefronts all over town from late October to Thanksgiving.

“We hope to inspire creativity and encourage our residents to seek out their local businesses,” City Manager Darren Gray said. “The Autumn Storefront Scarecrow Stroll is a fun way to provide an early boost for what is anticipated to be a very challenging holiday season for businesses.”

To motivate business participation, the city will provide free hay first come, first served starting Oct. 19 by contacting Business Liaison Barbara Hollerand at bhollerand@clermontfl.org or 352-241-7355.

Three winners will be chosen by a city panel of judges and notified by Nov. 10. Email your photos and favorites to bhollerand@clermontfl.org.

“Clermont’s Champion spirit is getting us through these tough times,” Gray said. “As a city, we’re continuing to encourage residents to support our businesses in safe, fun new ways.”

Not a business owner but want to participate? The more scarecrows the better! Schools, churches, residents — anyone can participate. Go simple by building yours from some old clothes and a T-shirt. More adventurous? Come up with a theme that matches your business such as a waiter or a favorite customer.

Alternatively, team up with neighbors, create a theme and encourage your patrons and neighbors to visit each location and take a photo with all of your scarecrows. Give scarecrows a name or ask your customers to suggest one.

Scarecrows should be in good taste, family friendly, and without adult, political or religious themes. Scarecrows should be placed so that at least 4 feet of pedestrian space is maintained outside the business location for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

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