Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Last Pumpkin

In our weird modern hi-tech world, farmers are too often hard put to earn a decent living. One answer: go into the tourism business; let big city kids and their parents experience a small, safe and sanitized taste of old-fashioned country living.

Thus was born the annual Young's Farm Pumpkin Festival. It's been a tradition with our family for several years, especially for the young one (above and over at OmegaMom's site.)

The corn fields are interlaced with pumpkin vines (and a few of those giant sunflowers I love); come October and harvest time, there's literally a pumpkin midway (above) for folk too weak, too old or too impatient to venture out into the fields (below.)

Above -- a huge sunflower in seed, ready for the birds.

And here, the granddaughter poses amid the pumpkins.

Local kids pick up tips acting as "Pumpkin Packers"; they tote prize selections for customers in wagons, wheel barrows and carts.

Other goodies from the farm: chile braids (above) and sized pumpkins, gourds and butternut squash (below.)


At departure time, folks are checked out and their pumpkins are priced. And there were crowds to handle!

Unfortunately, this is the last pumpkin festival at Young's; next weekend is the finale. The state's arcane water laws tilt in favor of the real estate developer vs. the farmer. The Young's have sold and next year -- more houses down in Dewey. Aren't we the lucky ones?

Rumors say that there may be less elaborate pumpkin events at an organic farm up in Chino Valley and another near Flagstaff in 2007.

Note: more to come -- there's a carnival side to the festival, too!

3 comments:

Steve G said...

Super pictures. I still need to buy a pumpkin.

Granny J said...

Do they grow pumpkins in Germany? In fact, do they celebrate Halloween there?

Granny J said...

Hey, I went to steve g's site (just click on his name up there) and found that he had indeed carved a pumpkin. In Germany, yet. Oh that cultural imperialism!!

 
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