Sikeston students transform pumpkins into favorite characters

Tuesday, October 29, 2019
Zuri Flye combs her fingers through the hair of a golden pumpkin Tuesday as she walks through the display of decorated pumpkins entered in the annual Great Pumpkin Decorating Contest at the Sikeston Kindergarten and Early Childhood Center. Voting ends at 4 p.m. Thursday.
Leonna Heuring/Standard Democrat

SIKESTON —  Nearly 70 pumpkins have been transformed into various characters, and voting is underway for the annual Great Pumpkin Decorating Contest at the Sikeston Kindergarten and Early Childhood Center

Tuesday marked the last day entries were accepted for the annual contest, which has served as the school PTO’s fundraiser for over 10 years, according to Principal Jenny Hobeck.

Over the years the fundraiser has brought in anywhere from $400 to $1,000, Hobeck said. This year’s proceeds go toward purchasing playground equipment, she noted.

The only decorating stipulation for the contest is that pumpkins could not be carved.

From Olaf, Super Mario and Ninja Turtles to unicorns and dinosaurs, the pumpkins on display feature characters children and adults of all ages will recognize.

Maverik Pullen, who made a pumpkin that looked like a dinosaur was hatching out of an egg on top of a nest, said he looked on his mom’s phone and found the idea to make his pumpkin, which included a toy dinosaur, pebbles and sticks.

“These are real sticks,” Maverik said as he pointed to the sticks that helped make the nest for his hatchling.

Maverik said it didn’t bother him to break apart his toy dinosaur to glue it onto his white-painted pumpkin. He was happy with his finished product.

Meanwhile, Zuri Flye said she had fun making her pink M&M pumpkin, which was painted in all pink and featured pink accents like hair, a hat and sequins.

In addition to their pumpkins, Maverik and Zuri said they enjoyed looking at all o the pumpkins. Some of the favorite entries they liked were pumpkins decorated as Olaf the snowman, a Sikeston Bulldog cheerleader, unicorns, Spiderman, and traditional Halloween characters like spiders and mummies.

Parents, teachers, students and community members are able to vote by dropping off change into containers in front of their favorite pumpkins during school hours and through 4 p.m. Thursday at the Kindergarten Center.

The Kindergarten Center will announce its winners on Friday. Prizes will be awarded to the top three pumpkins that raise the most money and also one Kid’s Choice Award.

Lee Hunter Elementary in Sikeston is also hosting a Great Pumpkin Contest sponsored by the school’s PTO. Like the Kindergarten Center, parents, teachers, students and visitors can vote on their favorite pumpkins by dropping money into a donation cup in front of the pumpkins.

Voting for Lee Hunter’s contest ends at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday with all winners announced on Halloween. There will be three “Kids Choice” awards voted on by students. Money raised will benefit the Lee Hunter PTO.

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