Pumpkin Moving Day at the Parkers, 2014 – An Inside Look

Posted 11/1/14 - For the last few year, Doug Parker and Heather Roberts-Parker have been kind enough to invite me to join them on pumpkin moving day, generally the weekend before Halloween.  This year, I got there a little late, and missed all the moving, but I did get pictures of the front yard once the moving was done, and Chris Roberts, Heather’s brother who flies out for a week or two each year to carve many of the pumpkins that delight thousands of people on Halloween night was kind enough to share me a video of some of the moving.  You can see that below. Also, this year, I was privileged to be allowed to take photos of the inside of the Parker house, which is decorated for the holiday like no one else’s home you’ve ever seen.  The fun doesn’t stop at the door.

As many of you know, Doug grows many of the pumpkins that you see each year in his back yard, and they all have to be moved out front, hence pumpkin moving day.  That’s no easy fat, considering that several of the pumpkins generally weigh several hundred pounds.  I seem to remember one year he had a 700 pounder…The story behind growing the pumpkins at home is a little surprising, according to Heather, one year when cleaning out the pumpkins, Doug left some of the seeds on the ground and they took root.  Ever since then, they’ve grown many of the pumpkins you see in their yard.

This was not a good year for the Parker pumpkin patch.  In her e-mail inviting me up this year, Heather shared the following: “There are very few Atlantic Giants this year in comparison to previous years, due to the appetites of Mr. and Mrs. Deer, their children, their cousins, and their cousins’ cousins!  The tender little growth tips of the pumpkin vines were morsels the deer could not resist, so we were (and still are) visited on an almost daily basis by their immediate and extended family.  Parker even had a seven foot tall temporary fence around the back patch, but a very strong brown bear made quick work of that.  He (or perhaps it was his brother) visited us a couple of times this summer and as recently as last night and the morn before.  We’ve had quite a menagerie in the patch this year!  Add to that the fact that the pesky watermelon mosaic virus hit us again, so it has been a challenge, to say the least.  However, there are still plenty of Parker’s Big Maxx pumpkins and ringer sugar pumpkins (for TWO “Snagons” this year–that’s the plan!) to be moved!”

A big thank you to Doug, Heather and Chris for all their efforts in helping to turn Alegria into the magical place it is each year, and a big thanks to all their neighbors, as well.  We know it’s a lot of very hard work, and with all the candy that must be distributed on top of all the props and decoration, it’s not cheap, either.  So thank you to all the participating Alegria residents!  And thank you to SMPD, SMPD volunteers, CERT, SM Emergency Communications team, City staff and everyone else that helps to make this event happen.  Below the video, you’ll find the photo gallery.  Main Halloween Page    2014 Halloween Index page

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