Activities ranged from pumpkin carving to free hugs
The Pearl Street Mall transformed into a vibrant celebration of music, art, food and pumpkin carving this weekend to celebrate Oktoberfest.
Children wore hats made out of balloons, spun around on carnival rides and played in the fountain while thousands of golden leaves fell from the trees.
Scott Cummins, a master pumpkin carver hired to demonstrate his skills for the celebration, carefully transformed a large pumpkin into the face of CU’s buffalo mascot.
“I started out carving pumpkins as a teenager. My parents always let me carve a pumpkin, and every year I decided to do just a little bit more, something with a little bit more detail.”
Cummins has a Web site, www.pumpkingutter.com, which includes pictures of his pumpkin artwork.
“I enjoy sculpting into the rind of the pumpkin to get an unusual effect and allow for more interesting possibilities with the pumpkin. Afterwards, lighting the pumpkin is especially striking, since the change in thickness of the shell allows light to pass though in different amounts,” he said on his Web site.
Anyone who went to Fall Fest couldn’t miss the “Free Hug” participants. Holding their bright signs high above their heads and giving anyone the “Free Hug” they advertised, the group was imitating a YouTube video about hugging.
Many Pearl Street performers were there to take advantage of the festival as well. Adding to the ambiance of the event, guitarists, singers, a contortionist, pirates creating balloon animals for children and flute players were at every corner.
One of the biggest attractions at the celebration was at the Fall Fest Stage. The Chris Rouse Polka Band that played on Saturday inspired many to get up and dance.
Linda Levy, a participant in the dancing, said, “I don’t know much about dancing, but it doesn’t matter. I just want to feel the music.”
Other notable groups that performed on the stage included Felonious Smith, Soul Sacrifice, Wendy Woo and Chris Daniels & The Kings.
Craving some pumpkin pie to celebrate fall? Cummins’ pumpkin-carving booth included handouts of Libby’s Pumpkin Pie recipe.
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 teaspoon pumpkin-pie spice
2 large eggs
1 can (15 ounces) Libby’s 100 percent pure pumpkin
1 can (12 ounces) Nestle Carnation evaporated milk
1 unbaked (9-inch) deep-dish pie shell
Mix sugar, salt and pumpkin-pie spice in a small bowl. Beat eggs in a large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture.
Pour into pie shell.
Bake in a preheated (425 degrees Fahrenheit) oven for 15 minutes. Then reduce temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for two hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate.