Wednesday, 5 November 2014



Last year's pumpkins look sad - they must have known the squirrels would eat them!

Last Monday, Oct 20th: All of the citizens, of knife using age, were assembled on the front step to participate in this years pumpkin carving event. With designs in mind and knives in hand (and even a drill onsite), they created some wonderful jack-o-lanterns.

First things first - a hot chocolate
A must for all cool weather outdoor activities
The initial work of cleaning out the pumpkins is one thing these participants did not particularly enjoy. 
Then to add in the task of separating seeds from the orange slimy pulp, it was too much for one little guy away who refused to help out.
However, it did not take that long before the pumpkins were ready to be carved. A pile of goop and a bowl of seeds showed the hard work that was done.
Lolli started first, but ran into a few design problems - drawing a face on a bumpy pumpkin is not like drawing on a flat piece of paper. This resulted in a myriad of marker lines all over the side of the pumpkin. Water was not strong enough to remove the 'Sharpie', so, a big can of hair spray was brought out and did an amazing job cleaning off all of the stray lines.

E had a design problem as well - he lacked an idea for a face. Preparing for this event he drew out a few 'crazy' faces on scrap paper and had decided on triangle eyes and a wiggly shaped mouth. But, once the real pumpkin was in front of him he changed his mind. It may have been the warm sun, it may have been the distraction of having a sharp blade in his hand, but, whatever it was his mind drew a blank. The result was an improved face with circley eyes, and a somewhat 'blobby' mouth. He managed to cut out about 1/3 of the face before lost he interest.

Matty's face was intended to be a sunglass wearing, moustached, cartoonish caracter...not an #epicfail, but, not a #showworthypumpkin . He had no comment.

Left to Right: Lolli's, Matty's, E's, Jen's, Extra warty rotten pumpkin
This year Jen decided to try an unorthodox method and use a power drill. Sharpie-ing on the word BOO she drilled holes along the lines. Other than one tangled up rag incident it worked out well.

Seeing it in the light does not do it justice. Darkness, with a light inside is really how this creation shines.

Boo! Did I scare you?
Remember those pumpkin seeds that were painstakingly removed? They were roasted up a little while later - 250 degrees for 30 to 35 mins.
Last year test batches of seeds were sprinkled with a variety of spices such as cinnamon, chili, salt and pepper. They received critical acclaim and it was decided that in 2014 a batch or two of flavoured seeds were to be made.
First batch - Cinnamon
Second batch - Chili

Surprisingly, after all the carving and seed sorting, spicing and roasting, only two mason jars full of seeds came out of the oven. 

Perhaps next year more pumpkins will be given faces and more seeds will be roasted. However, for the time being you can hear lots of crunching of pumpkin seeds and the squishing of rotting pumpkins in an around the Place Under the Pine.

Kingston | 60:30

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