Parade of Pumpkins a spooky hit

25 Oct

If last night’s attendance at the Webster Recreation Center’s first-ever Parade of Pumpkins was any indication, people are starved for family entertainment.

An estimated 1,500 or so adults, teens and children walked the mile-long Chiyoda Trail last night, so many people that cars filled the Rec Center’s parking lot, and quickly overflowed into the lot across the street.

As they strolled along the path, visitors were greeted by about 450 uniquely carved, glowing jack-o-lanterns lining both sides of the path. The designs ran the gamut from traditional and whimsical to spooky and just plain weird. I saw a unicorn, cats, witches, a moose, flowers, and lots of toothy grins.

At the end of the parade, everyone was treated to donuts and cider, served in the Rec Center’s expansive playing fields, with plenty of space for social distancing.

Parks Commissioner Chris Bilow and Recreation Supervisor Katie Kovar spent much of the evening welcoming families at the parade entrance. They were delighted not only by the turnout, but also by how many people thanked them for pulling the event together.

The enthusiastic response was a pleasant surprise. “We expected maybe 100 pumpkins from the community,” Kovar said. Even still, it only took a few hours for the staff members to place them along the path, adding some extra surprises like a pumpkin-light banner and twinkly lights along the path’s two bridges.

It was a beautiful night for a stroll, and a great opportunity for people to discover one of Webster’s best walking paths.

Bilow and Kovar are already thinking about next year, when COVID restrictions will not limit them to an all-outdoor event. They’re thinking maybe creating two paths, one just for toddlers and small children. Perhaps having music, games and crafts. Basically, making it a big fall festival, both inside the Rec Center and out.

“People want to do things like this at the holidays, and who better than (the Webster Rec)?” Bilow said.

Here are some more photos from the evening:

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One Response to “Parade of Pumpkins a spooky hit”

  1. Donna Coccia October 25, 2020 at 4:55 pm #

    It was a fun event. Nice to see so many families out taking the mile long walk. So many creative pumpkins to see. Even some neighbors along the path were lit up. Music, too. Thank you for all your hard work to make this happen.

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