They’re the Great Pumpkins, Charlie Brown

I like Halloween just fine, but since our daughters stopped trick-or-treating ten or more years ago, I don’t go all out for it. I don’t care to wear a costume and haven’t carved a pumpkin in years (our front porch now sports a plastic plug-in jack-o-lantern from Target). But when I saw online posts about decorating pumpkins like story characters, well, my interest in Halloween became renewed.

Pongo, Fancy Nancy, Harry Potter, and Wesley the Owl. All very cute!
Pongo, Fancy Nancy, Harry Potter, and Wesley the Owl. All very cute!

So the flyers advertising our Inaugural Story Character Pumpkin Decorating Contest went home in early in October. I’d talk up the contest to my classes but didn’t get much feedback, so I wasn’t sure what to expect when the first of three pumpkin turn-in days rolled around on October 21, but I was excited to get to school and meet my volunteers for the 7:30 a.m. drop-off.

Lots of Cat in the Hat, and a little Notebook of Doom.
Lots of Cat in the Hat, and a little Notebook of Doom.

We got four pumpkins. Four. I was feeling kinda Charlie-Brownish.

I was pretty sure it was going to be a flop. Four pumpkins. We didn’t even get enough to have one for each of the five categories. But then I had six classes that day and many of the students were very interested in the four pumpkins.

During Thursday’s drop-off, about 12 more pumpkins arrived. That day, six more classes had library and the feedback was very enthusiastic. By the end of Friday’s drop off frenzy, our total number of entries was 41. 41! That’s about 10% participation. For a first-time event, that was amazing.

Very Hungry Caterpillar and Imogene (from Imogene's Antlers) are from primary grade students; Timmy Failure (bottom left) is a family entry.
Very Hungry Caterpillar and Imogene (from Imogene’s Antlers) are from primary grade students; Timmy Failure (bottom left) is a family entry.

We had judging and prizes for first place in five categories (primary grades, intermediate grades, middle school grades, family, and teachers & staff), as well as runners-up. But receiving gift cards wasn’t the purpose of the event. The purpose was to have family fun, be creative, and celebrate reading. Everybody did that, so everybody won. I even discovered a couple of books that I want to get my hands on, thanks to some of the entries.

The remainder of this post features more pictures of the creative, fun, amazing entries. Enjoy and be inspired! Until next time, keep reading!

Our middle school entries. Some wonderful creativity!
Our middle school entries. Some wonderful creativity!
Top picture has entries from grades K, 1, and 2; bottom picture is from the family category.
Top picture has entries from grades K, 1, and 2; bottom picture is from the family category.
Top picture, primary grade category. Bottom, intermediate.
Top picture, primary grade category. Bottom, intermediate.
From students in grades pre-k through 2.
From students in grades pre-k through 2.
Some teachers and staff got in on the fun.
Some teachers and staff got in on the fun.
From students in grades 3 through 5.
From students in grades 3 through 5.
And the winners are... Primary -- Crumpet from Too Hot to Hug; Family -- The Very Hungry Caterpillar; Intermediate -- David from No, David! Middle School -- Headless Horseman from The Legend of Sleepy Hollow; Teachers & Staff -- Charlotte and Wilbur from Charlotte's Web.
And the winners are…
Primary — Crumpet from Too Hot to Hug; Family — The Very Hungry Caterpillar; Intermediate — David from No, David!; Middle School — Headless Horseman from The Legend of Sleepy Hollow; Teachers & Staff — Charlotte and Wilbur from Charlotte’s Web.
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