Jack-o'Lantern Contest Rules

Pumpkin Festival Schedule of Events


The colorful fruit of many trees in the gardens is as eye-catching as bright foliage.

Autumn's textures, shapes, and colors delight many visitors.


Join Us for a Pumpkin Festival in the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens (Week of October 14-20, 2012)


Contest participants of all ages enjoyed choosing from a
wide variety of pumpkins in 2011.

This year the Arboretum is holding its second annual Pumpkin Festival - an event for the entire community - featuring a pumpkin-carving contest and lighted jack-o-lantern display (October 19-20, 2012).

The Pumpkin Giveaway will occur on
Sunday, October 14 (1:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.) and
Monday, October 15 (1:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.).

On Sunday and Monday of the festival week, we will distribute 750 pumpkins free (first come/first served) to anyone who registers to enter the contest, but those who do not receive a pumpkin at the Arboretum may still enter the contest by providing their own pumpkins.

There are contest rules regarding the jack-o'-lanterns, and ribbons will be awarded for the best-in-show entry and the best in each of seven categories. Please refer to the schedule for the week to be sure that you know when each stage of the contest will occur.

All entries must be brought to the gardens and registered on Thursday and Friday. Those submitting the first 350 entries will receive a gift certificate for the Penn State Berkey Creamery.

The Event Lawn will be the stage for displaying the entries and the jack-o'-lanterns will be lighted for public viewing on both Friday and Saturday evenings (October 19 and 20) from 6:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m.

Judging by a panel of campus and community leaders will occur between 6:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 20, 2012. Light refreshments will be available (free) from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. for visitors to enjoy as they view the pumpkins and autumn displays throughout the gardens.

We would like to thank the Vargo family whose generous gift made this community event possible.

Wagons are used to haul the pumpkins to campus for the pumpkin giveaway.


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