The day of this year’s Keene pumpkin festival was showery and I couldn’t make up my mind whether I’d go or not. Finally as it got dark I threw caution to the wind, grabbed my camera, and out the door I went. After all, how could I possibly resist the lure of taking photos in the dark while being pushed, elbowed, and stepped on in a herd of 80,000 people, 1,000 of whom wanted to take a photo of the same pumpkin that I had my lens trained on? Opportunities like those only happen once each year.
Before I get ahead of myself I should warn all of you that this post is even more photo heavy than usual, but I’ll try to make up for that by keeping the chatter down to a minimum. Also, those photos won’t be the sharpest you’ve seen because they were all taken hand held. I’ve seen what can happen to someone why dares to set up a tripod in the dark amidst crowds like these, so I left mine at home.
I’ll start with a witch because they were popular with the pumpkin carvers and I saw them everywhere.
I saw only one or two ghouls. This was a great example, I thought. I call him one eyed Jack.
It wouldn’t be Halloween without skulls, and I saw plenty. The design and carving were especially well done on this one.
You’ve got to have vampires, and this was the best one I saw. There is amazing talent on display at these festivals, and that’s really what draws me to them.
Last year Keene took back the Guinness world record for the most lit Jack O lanterns with 30,581of them but this year the count was down because of the rain and lack of challengers. Still, I think there were over 20,000 counted. This photo is of the pumpkin tower. Several of these towers used to line Main Street but the organizers worried that they might tip over onto the crowd, so these days there is only one, and it is well rigged so it can’t tip. The giant pumpkin on top weighed 950 pounds before it was carved, and had to be placed there by crane. I forgot to get a close up shot of it.
There was live music in the gazebo.
There were mischievous pumpkins.
And there were laid back pumpkins.
There were familiar faces, like spider man.
Cookie monster was there, complete with cookies that looked mighty tasty.
I’m not sure what this one was about but he was riding one of the Civil War cannons in the town common and waving to everyone who passed by.
You had to look closely at this one to really see all that was going on. What a lot of work!
This one had swallowed another. I think.
I didn’t see the forks with this one until I saw the photo. Nice touch!
This one still has me wondering how it was done. It’s a great optical illusion.
I think this person should have won the prize for most talented carver for their rendition of The Birth of Venus. The original oil was done in Florence, Italy in 1485 by Sandro Botechelli.
In the end it’s all about having some fun, and these two clearly were.
That’s it for this year. I hope everyone has a happy Halloween!
Backward, turn backward,
O Time, in your flight
make me a child again
just for to-night!
~Elizabeth Akers Allen
Thanks for coming by.