Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Parade of Pumpkins' Success

Ya, so I had to download a new collage app so that I could get all these pictures up here for you to see! (I just had to put Zac's picture up because it just sums up the entire reason I do all of this for the Fragile X Association of Utah.)

I know some of you missed it, and I wanted to give you as close an idea as possible.

Trust me, though, you really had to be there to get the splendor of it all! I wish I could tell you stories about every single one.

There were some amazing displays and ideas and it was so fun to see our event double in attendance, displays and funds raised as compared to our first time last year.

We can only go up from here.

We learned a LOT of things the hard way, but I am grateful to have been humble enough to take these as learning experiences and not failures.

My family was not only a support in running and facilitating our event but it was a lot of family who actually did many of the displays!

The golf ball pumpkin in the collage above was actually the creative genius of Sister's teacher with the help of her students. Here is the picture that she sent me of Sister getting in on the fun.

She was SO PROUD!

My mother-in-law, Lynne made a bunch of pumpkin oven kits to be sold. I loved them! She worked so hard on them and even stayed for the full 2 days to help with the event. I probably wore her out.

Jessie, Chelsea, Aaron and Kirsten all painted a lot of pumpkins and I even got our nanny, Lindsey to do several with her friends!

The skeleton in the antique washer came about because my mom and dad and I were being funny, and it ended up being a fun display!

Tiffany (my co-leader and second cousin) and Lynne ran the front table both days… they were real troopers being be the open door letting in the cold. So brave. (smile)

Here's Brother helping with one of the pumpkins that Lindsey and her friends did. He was SO proud!

These were a couple of my favorites!

This is the view from the stairway above the action! Pretty impressive, I thought!

This is one of many displays that my mom did. They are both dried gourds. The turkey part was one that was broken and she came up with the idea to make it into a turkey sitting on a pumpkin… clever!

Joel has had this planned since last year! Quite creative if you ask me, and quite the catch for a real pumpkin hunter!

The picture of the washer skeleton again… but this time we just had to show the irony of the live spider crawling all over it! It really added to the ambience. It made a home there for most of the event… Aleesa, did anyone warn you that you may have brought a friend home with your purchase?

The displays were bigger and better this year!
(If you look up close on the Poison Apple pumpkin you'll see the reason I did it.)

Of course there is always the center of attention and the biggest reason behind the beginnings of the Parade of Pumpkins… the Master Pumpkin Carver, Aaron! He was there for the full event and carved at least 4, if not more, pumpkins while he was there. People got such enjoyments watching him carve!

We also thought we would try out having entertainment this year. It was a great learning experience. Live music is awesome! But you have to choose the right times for the right performers. (Note to self: do NOT have loud rock bands come while the auction is coming to a close.)

It was so fun to have our bass player, Steve's band, Midlife Crisis come play a lot of good oldies for us! I sang along with almost every song!

Heather and her Twist and Shout Performance Group came and entertained us with music, singing, dance and even a little Hot Hula. I had performed in her group a few years ago and it was so fun to see her in action again.

"Judy and The Rest" also performed! Who would have guessed, huh? We had a blast! We were especially entertained with my mom was singing her original songs, would forget the words and then Steve would chime in behind her with the correct lyrics. Tee hee!

We were also excited this year to have trophies to hand out to a few of the select! The event-goers even got to vote for their favorite display. (More on the winners at the end of the post.)

Then there were the people who dedicated SO MUCH time, energy and encouragement to this entire endeavor! I wish I had photos of everyone who made this entire thing possible. I have yet to get thank you cards out, but still want to mention ALL the help I received!

We want to thank all of these businesses and people for helping us make this a success:

Pace Bioscience for being our highest donor to our event

Alexander's for printing up all our signs and posters

Monogram Station screen printing for all of our awesome P.O.P. Staff t-shirts

Big Buns for helping us bring in the crowds and then being kind enough to donate what was left over after they were done for us to sell for our fund raiser

Persnickety Props and Backdrops (my friend, Katy) for also helping bring in the crowds with free pictures

The Red Barn, Vineyard Garden Center and Olson's Garden Shoppe for donating a total of 45 pumpkins to our event

Joel for taking care of more than just the financial end of things

Chelsea for being my right hand girl while getting it all together and for being our great photographer

Kirsten and Jeremy for bringing in pumpkins from all connections they had and for creating their own and supporting this event by helping out and face painting

Tiffany for being a great co-leader and staying for the entirety of the event to run the show

Fowler Printing for printing up our flyers

Judy and the Rest, Twist and Shout Performance Group, Midlife Crisis and The Rockinators for the amazing and unforgettable entertainment

Jessie for being head of face painting (and some of the cutest pumpkins donated) it's not often you get a professional painter like her to paint pumpkins for you

Cousins Cathy and Jerry for coming to oversee everything and make sure it all went well!

Lindsey for watching our 3 FX-ers for 2 days so that Marc could stay to help me

Katie, one of our FX mom's and FXAU members, for gathering tables for our event

Aaron for being our master carver

Gary and Lynne for supporting us by helping and surviving 2 days of our event

All those who made displays and brought in pumpkins, friends and family alike

All the attendees and donators for helping our Parade of Pumpkins become a success


Marc for supporting and loving me all the way through this entire thing!

Below are our trophy winners:

Aaron was voted "Best in Show" by our event attendees

Kyle, of the Giant Pumpkin Growers Association was the winner of our "Highest Donation" award

Thanks to the Loveridge family (they have a young boy in their family affected by FXS) for their incredible gingerbread skills they received the "Master Carver" Award

And last but not least!

Our winner of the Best Display award goes to an 8th grade class whose teacher is friends with my sister and wanted to do a display in honor of Kirsten's son Zac.

Posts coming soon:
Baby's Birthday
St. Louis
Halloween fun
Some of my favorite photos
Just for fun stuff

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