MON, OCT 19, after 9am
VISTA Foods, Parking Lot, South Main Street, Laconia
More info below.

Opechee Park PUMPKIN BOUNCE (New!)

Bring kids of all ages to Opechee Park. A whole patch of inflatable bounce houses for the kids to jump around in. Themed jumpy inflatable houses include: Scooby-Doo, Spiderman, Frozen, Disney Princess, Sponge Bob and lots more. Plus a SLIDE to zip down! Tickets $1 each or 6 for $5.


What is more delicious than a pumpkin pancake? Photo by Ruth Sterling, a connoisseur.

Holy Pumpkin Pancakes Batman! 

Update! It’s back: 8-11am OCT 24, Holy Trinity School “Pumpkin” Pancake Breakfast Plain AND pumpkin pancakes, sausage, juice, coffee, tea, and water. 50 Church Street, Laconia 603 524-3156 x117

Radio Messages: Join the fun! Charlie & Ruth, Amanda and Dad… who’s next? Would you like to spotlight your business or club’s participation in the fest? Radio gets results. Contact. Sponsored by  NH1 / Binnie Media / WEMJ-WLNH.





MON, OCT 19, after 9am
VISTA Foods, Parking Lot, South Main Street, Laconia

The pumpkins arrive packed in cardboard bins of 40-60 per bin. Less than a full bin, 50 individual pumpkins, can usually be transported in a car. Pickup trucks work great for 50-200. Your school maintenance team, PTA, and faculty will probably have good ideas on how to transport bins. Trailers are often a good solution. Be safe! Be creative.


Our favorite carving knife.


You will want to set up a carving process–some schools do this in art classes. Some choose to hold a PTA event in the evening so parents can have fun too. We suggest these events happen on WED and THU of festival week. We recommend carving kits readily available with scoops and safety knives. ANY method deemed safe by you is fine.


Official Login2015 sheet downloadable here. If you have more than 20 pumpkins, it is good to have your carvers log them in on these sheets ahead of time. Some schools will write, School Name, town, total number of pumpkins. Others will ask each carver to sign their name. This is up to you but we do know that the registration or log in process is part of the pride of the event. Individuals’ pumpkins will be logged in Saturday on the same log in sheets, located at the four Welcome Centers. Businesses and individuals will be dropping off pumpkins on Friday as well as Saturday. Completed group sheets can be dropped off with pumpkins on Friday.


School children’s pumpkins should be delivered to Downtown Laconia on FRIDAY MORNING, October 23, between 9am and Noon. There will be a coned off drop-off area in the parking spaces along Rotary Park on Beacon Street East. Volunteers will help place the pumpkins in Rotary Park and surrounding areas. (Note: Volunteers are needed and can register for this job at PumpkinFestival.org.) As Beacon Street East places fill up, we will be distributing deliveries THROUGHOUT DOWNTOWN. By mid-day Saturday, pumpkins will be cheek-to-cheek from Rotary Park to Veterans Square and just about everywhere in between.


EVERY carved pumpkin does want a 3-hour votive candle. WALGREENS is offering these at a great price while supplies last. As other resources become known, please share information! Ideally, every dropped off jack-o’-lantern will be ready to illuminate. ILLUMINATION is not restricted to candles. Battery-operated tea lights are fine. We do need to remove these items before composting at the end of the fest. As long as a pumpkin or other gourd is carved somehow and illuminated somehow during the 5-minute official Guinness Count, it is officially included.


In order to be part of the OFFICIAL GUINNESS WORLD RECORD COUNT, pumpkins must be carved in an apparent design (age appropriate, loosely defined. A random slash is not approved by Guinness). This is not intended to discourage ANYONE so please appreciate any carving any child or other participant does without critique.


At 8:30pm on Saturday, as the fest concludes, carvers are encouraged to take their masterpieces home for Halloween display. (Many of us take them home EVERY year!) You will want to find your jack, wait until the count is announced, and then usher it home safely.

Participating Schools, updated SAT, SEPT 26

Plymouth Elementary 100
Compass Classical Academy 75
Laconia High School 50
Boy Scout Troop 68/Cub Scout Pack 68 50
Watermelon Seeds Preschool & Kindergarten 24
Alexandria United Methodist Church Sunday School 30
Elm Street School 300
Belmont Middle School 85
BElmont Elementary School 470
Plymouth Elementary School 45
Campton Elementary School 45
Woodland Heights School 435
Cadette Girl Scout Troop 13158 ( all of the girls attend Laconia Middle School) 8
Spaulding Youth Center 100
Holy Trinity Catholic School 85
Gilford Public Library 40
Pleasant Street School 280
Belmont High School 20
Boys & Girls Club of the Lakes Region 60
Gilford Middle School 400
Lakeland School 30
Project EXTRA 100
Loudon Elementary School 100
Laconia Middle School 300
Danbury Elementary School 15
Paul Smith Elementary School Franklin, NH 180
Laconia Middle School 40
Ps/is284 200
Laconia High School-Life Skills Program 30
Whole Child Center 50
Central NH Homeschoolers 65

Illuminations_18_2015Newsletter issued August 27, 2015 Illuminations_18_2015l

Newsletter issued July 25, 2015 Illuminations_17_2015n

Illuminations_17_2015nNewsletter issued May 30, 2015 Illuminations_16_2015


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Sporborg Jump-Starts 2017 Pumpkin Festival Fund-raising

Never underestimate the individual’s ability to accomplish the seemingly impossible. Just how far would one person go to see pumpkins on Central Square? If the person is Nancy Sporborg, who founded Keene Pumpkin Festival in 1991, there really is no limit to how far she would go. She wrote a book, a 215-page, coffee-table-worthy, high […]

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