Fall is in full swing and Halloween is right around the corner. What better way to celebrate than picking out pumpkins for decoration, to carve or simply with which to enjoy fall festivities?
Main Street Alexander City is providing that opportunity close to home with The Great Pumpkin Patch at Strand Park in downtown Alex City to be held Oct. 19 to Oct. 31.
“We figured this would be a great thing to provide the community since there are not many pumpkin patches close by,” executive director Stacey Jeffcoat said. “Plus this is a fundraiser for Main Street, so a portion of the proceeds will help us to help downtown.”
Main Street is partnering with a farm on the Navajo Indian Reservation in Farmington, New Mexico. Pumpkins USA works with nonprofits and faith-based organizations to provide pumpkins for sale with no money down from the receiving organizations.
“When I first heard about Pumpkins USA, I figured it was a no-brainer for Main Street,” Jeffcoat said. “It’s not only a fun fall activity to offer the community, which is part of what Main Street’s outreach, but it’s also a way for us to raise some funds without putting up any money. Everything we make is profit.”
Main Street will receive a quarter-load of an 18-wheeler, equaling roughly 700 pumpkins of all different shapes and sizes. Any pumpkins sold, a portion goes back to Pumpkins USA and a portion goes to Main Street.
“It’s really pretty simple and I think it’s just a wonderful thing they offer,” Jeffcoat said.
With COVID-19 putting a halt to many of Main Street’s typical fundraisers and money-raising efforts, this is a great way to recoup some of that loss.
The Great Pumpkin Patch will be open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday at Strand Park for the duration of two weeks. Volunteers will man the patch and wagons will be available for customers to cart around their selections.
“(Pumpkins USA) provides a measuring tool that tells you exactly how much to charge for the pumpkin based on its size,” Jeffcoat said. “They can range anywhere from .75 cents up to $60 and everything in between.”
There are 25 varieties of pumpkins for a wide selection of sizes, colors and shapes. The pumpkins arrive loose in the trailer to avoid the necessity of a forklift for unloading. However, many hands on deck are needed Saturday to help unload pumpkins and set up the pumpkin patch.
“We need all the help we can get and if anyone wants to volunteer, they can call me (at 256-307-3949),” Jeffcoat said.