Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Pumpkin Trail

Yesterday evening I attended the 2nd Annual Pumpkin Trail at the Lubbock Memorial Arboretum. The three day event officially began at 6 but I went half an hour earlier in the hopes of getting a decent parking spot. Good move on my part. The place began to fill up as more folks arrived. Some brought their kids in costumes and there was reportedly even a dog in a pumpkin suit. I expected a lot of folks to attend as the night before, which was opening night, was interrupted by winds, a lot of hail and pounding rain. There were still rain puddles but most of the gravel path was dry enough to easily maneuver.

The temperature was just right, cool enough to wear a light jacket if one chose, and the hot cocoa sold at the event was perfect. There were 1,550 carved and/or painted pumpkins that had been donated by various individuals, businesses and civic and social groups. What a fun community event! And the pumpkins were amazing. Some were grouped into themed settings and there were also several dressed up scarecrows decked in full costumed regalia, purses, hats and all. Below are a few of my favorite pumpkins.

This one would have one first prize from me if I was handing out awards. It's a dancer holding up her skirt and was donated by the Aztlan Ballet Folklorico.
The Edgar Allen Poe pumpkin was my next favorite. So well done, almost like a woodblock cut. Too bad the donor didn't place a raven on top.
For some reason, Einstein was carved upside down. Or perhaps the carver accidently cut the hole for the candle on the wrong end, who knows. It was the only pumpkin that was upside.
Here's part of the Buddy Holle pumpkin grouping. Holle was a Lubbock native and the museum named after him donated these pumpkins.
The Day of the Dead pumpkin grouping was colorful and fun. It should be the winner for most fun display.
And of course no pumpkin display is complete without the pumpkin eating pumpkin.
There were a lot of cat pumpkins. This one was really nicely carved out.
Toward the end of the trail was a dual display of good and bad fairytales. The good display had butterfly wings, ribbons and mini pumpkins hanging from the tree. Below, a variety of pumpkins were grouped together. The owl trio was so cute.
The princess theme, complete with a coach pumpkin, captured a lot of people attention, particularly the kids who liked to get their photos taken in front of the display.
The swan gourds also got a lot of oohs and ahhhs from onlookers. The speckling looked like feathers.
And, since this a gardening blog, below are a few shots from the large flower beds at the back part of the Arboretum. My previous visits had been for plant sales and I had never wandered back far enough to see the far back beds. They were beautiful and putting on quite the show for visitors last night. Their zinnias hadn't faded away yet, unlike in my garden. The marigolds really stood out, making me wish I had some. Unfortunately, this is one plant I have never been able to grow. Don't know why, but I always kill them.
It would not surprise me if all these plants were raised from seed. The plantings were dense and beautiful.
I was hoping to post a slide show of the rest of the pumpkin photos. However, after an hour of trying to do a slide show on Picasa I've given up. Could their instructions be any more confusing? ARGH!

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