If it’s Halloween time, then it has to be when the annual Duarte Pumpkin Contest shows up! And true to the time, it has showed up again this year — this is the 17th year in succession for this annual event. For those of you who are not aware, these pumpkins are created by Duarte employees. In earlier years, the contest winners were judged internally at Duarte. Then they started inviting others to judge them online and since the last few years, the contest is polled via a site where anyone can vote for their favorite pumpkins!
I asked Ashley Faus of Duarte about how do entries shown within the Duarte Halloween Pumpkin contest gets better each year, and when do the contestants start planning their pumpkins? Ashley responded:
We usually announce the contest 4-6 weeks before the pumpkins are due, and many people start planning their design immediately. However, there’s a short window for the actual carving, because we’re working with material that will rot within a day or two. Of course, seeing all the creative carving on the day of the pumpkin submission might spark an idea for next year!
The contest has been going for 15 years and each year as I’m working on mine I think, “for sure this time I’ll win” but I never have. So this year as I was working on my pumpkin I kept telling the poor thing that “I think you’re pretty but you’re not a winner” knowing that freakin’ brilliant pumpkins were being worked on at the same time.