With Covid-19 still being an issue in many areas, the fun and joy of hay rides to the pumpkin patch, laughing with strangers seeking the same perfect pumpkin and warming up with hot apple cider has been cancelled. But the season has not and the enjoyment of ringing in autumn is still in our hearts so here are a few ideas to help you create your own “waiting for the great pumpkin” event.
- If you have a few friends or neighbors who are in your ‘safe’ group, plan for the adults to each bring a few to several pumpkins (depending on the number of children) to your home (or one of the other’s homes). For extra fun, have all the kids wear their halloween costumes.
- Decorate your yard with scarecrows, gourds and scary spiders/skeletons/black cats. Set up a couple of decorated tables or picnic tables with bundles of markers or paints as a pumpkin decorating area.
- Create a few different piles of pumpkins around the yard and let the kids go on a pumpkin hunt….littlest children getting first dibs.
- Once all the pumpkins have been chosen, let the kids enjoy hot apple cider or hot chocolate (you can certainly enhance your own cider or chocolate with a bit of libations) while decorating their pumpkins. If there are older children let them go ahead and have their own carving station and provide safe pumpkin carving tools. They can even take on the role of helping to carve the little kids’ pumpkins if they want them to do so.
- If you feel so inclined you can also enjoy a fun version of dunking for apples by having a bucket full of apples in water and letting them “fish” for their apple. Then let them dunk them in melted caramel and walnut pieces to make perfect taffy apples.
- As the evening draws near and the darkness of dusk falls, light up the jack o lanterns so all the kids can see their fun creations together then they can take them home to create their own home pumpkin show.
No matter what is going on, it’s important to still create wonderful memories for ourselves and our children. This can be done with as big a group as you feel comfortable with having together. Kids and grownups alike will have a special memory to enjoy and remember! Happy Autumn!!