Welcome back to part two of my “Three Crazy Days at the Allotments” series of posts and in this one we are celebrating Halloween. We do this every year as it is a good excuse to have a BBQ, make our sheds look weird and to get together socially before the weather changes.
This year we decided to hold competitions for preserves, the weirdest vegetables, the best carved pumpkin lanterns and also invited members to decorate their sheds so that we could find one suitable to be hailed “The Spookiest Shed”. We set the afternoon and evening going with games for the children.
Our members had been so busy beforehand and the judges had a hard time selecting winners in all the competitions. The photos below shows the table where members dropped off their entries into the preserves and weird veggies competitions.
The competitions were judged as the BBQ was warming up. In the first photo one of our members, who likes to be known as Mrs Anna, is judging the Pumpkin Lantern competition. As you can see there were some very imaginative ideas. To her left is one of our youngest allotment members Edward, who danced his way through the afternoon but found a few moments to help our judge out. He did have to stop now and again for a rest and an occasional snooze. Pumpkins appeared all over the site – one member even decorated her compost heap with lots of small pumpkins. And of course Mrs Anna was appropriately dressed as one when she carried out her judging.
The tea shop awaited its first customers, as in the background members can be seen arriving. The communal huts were decorated to welcome everyone. As well as all the children who dressed up many adults joined in. It took a long time for us to work out who the ghost was!
I went round for a quick look at the Spooky Sheds while it was still just about light, to find so many different ideas.
The winning shed was this one which was decorated around every side of the shed itself, across the bench and down the plot to where the skeleton was rising out of the ground. On another plot a hand with one finger missing was rising from a plant pot.
One plot holder managed to co-ordinate her decoration with the berries of the Firethorn climbing up her shed. In another shed we found a witch had set up home!
As with all our seasonal celebrations we found time for a BBQ. As the light continued to fade we “sparked up” our seasonal lamps. Glowing skulls!
Some members took the chance to get dressed for the occasion. Here is Liz, our youngest committee member and Wendy who is one of our founder members.
Wendy has formed our tea committee with her neighbouring plot holder Dee and we can see them here enjoying their BBQ while taking a break from their tea and coffee making duties.
As the light faded, the children were getting increasingly excited in anticipation of the usual finale to out Halloween celebrations, our walkabout with our pumpkin lanterns. We trailed around the site looking at all the decorated sheds. One plot holder had even left a big tray of sweets on the bench for the wanderers. We were joined on our walk by real bats flying about our heads.
So one day we were celebrating the success of Shrewsbury in the Britain in Bloom awards and our essential role in it and the next we were letting our hair down and celebrating Halloween. Crazy lot really! It just shows how much fun gardening can be.
In the third and final post in this series about our allotments we found ourselves back there on day 3 and back in work mode.