Why in the world do so many people roll up their sleeves, dig out the guts of these large gourds, spend time and creativity carving anything from silly faces to scary houses, and then put them on their front porch in hopes that the local squirrels don’t devour it for lunch before the eve of Halloween? Are we all cursed with senseless motivation to partake in this insane ritual? Or is it just that the spirit of Halloween brings out the secret artist in all of us?
Creating these pumpkin masterpieces, better known as jack-o-lanterns, is a tradition that has been taking place for centuries. An Irish myth of a man known as Stingy Jack is what started what is now a multi-million dollar industry in the U.S. To make a long story short, the jack-o-lanterns are placed on the front porch of homes to ward off wandering evil spirits, such as Stingy Jack, during the time when the veil to the spirit world is at its thinnest and most vulnerable… Halloween Night.
Though jack-o-lanterns were originally created from turnips, beets and/or potatoes, as the world has evolved, the tradition has morphed into pumpkins, a native American fruit that has the perfect shape for crazy faces. With this tradition, an American dream was born. A profitable business for many farmers across the US as the jack-o-lantern craze has expanded into farmer’s markets, roadside stands, local grocery stores, fundraising pumpkin patches for non-profit organizations, Halloween festival pumpkin patch events, and of course the wholesale market that sells to our big box chain stores. About 1.5 billion pounds of pumpkins are produced each year on 75,000 acres of farmland. Of course, this does not include our local backyard pumpkin enthusiasts.
With all of that being said, TJC jumped on the Halloween festivity bandwagon, and we are in the midst of our 2nd Annual TJC Pumpkin Extravaganza. For a chance to work more closely with our fellow TJC co-workers and to create a way to include our friends, family and community, TJC teams have bonded, carved, decorated and presented their pumpkin masterpieces. Check out our Facebook page or stop in our office to vote for your favorite jack-o-lantern. Though they may not all scare off Stingy Jack, they will definitely entertain. Cast your vote by 10.31.15 and you will be entered to win a $50 gift certificate of your choice. Winners will be announced on Halloween morning!
If you would like to read more about Stingy Jack and the birth of the jack-o-lantern, visit http://www.history.com/topics/halloween/jack-olantern-history. To get in some last minute Halloween festivities or to learn more about the business of pumpkins visit www.pumpkinpatchesandmore.org.
Have a safe and Happy Halloween from all here at TJC Real Estate and Management Services!
Brought to you by Sondra Lockett-Cameron, Marketing Coordinator for TJC Real Estate and Management Services.
Black Cat Pumpkin created by Shelby Brow.
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