Green Cougars second annual pumpkin smash event goes ‘smashingly’ well
Ah, yes, fall. The season of pumpkins. Pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin bread, pumpkin-themed merchandise, pumpkin-themed decorations, jack-o-lanterns, pumpkin picking, and also, pumpkin smashing.
This unusual-sounding fall activity was exactly what happened on Saturday, November 4th, 2023. From 9 am-12 pm, the pumpkin smash event was hosted by the Green Cougars club members along with Mrs. Zara-Brito, the club sponsor, and Mrs. Ardell, who is the student activities director.
At 9 am, while the club members were waiting for pumpkins to arrive, Mrs. Ardell helped the club set up signs pointing the passing cars towards the location for the drop-off and smash event and also brought out a speaker to play music for the passersby and the club members to enjoy.
Thankfully, the weather for this year’s event was much nicer at around 60-70 degrees Fahrenheit compared to this time last year according to several club members who described it as rainy, cold, and gloomy.
The pleasant weather also seemed to affect the attendance. “I think the attendance was much better than last year; for one it was just the green Cougars that were there. Last year it was both the Green Cougars and Service Club.” Said Mrs. Zara-Brito.
This is the Green Cougar’s second annual pumpkin smash event, but this was the first time they hosted the event alone compared to last year. Mrs Zara-Brito says that “It was more planning this year because we were a stand-alone event as opposed to last year when we were part of the Cupcakes for a Cause. We had to do a lot of advertising this year. I know I did a lot of social media advertising everywhere I could!”
Once cars arrived, families had two choices. Either drop the pumpkin off near the dumpster so it can be smashed with the help of students, or smash any pumpkin lined up near the dumpster.
The dumpster itself was open, so nobody was forced to stain their shoes with pumpkin remains. Then, participants could either throw the pumpkin into a target with three holes that appeared to have a monster-like appearance, or they could smash the pumpkin into pieces with a bat.
Madeline (Maddie) Pizzica, ‘24, one out of the two leaders for the club, was keeping track of the number of pumpkins that were brought in on paper, and the total number came up to a total of 230 pumpkins.
The Pumpkin Smash was started by SCARCE in 2014, which is a nonprofit environmental and education organization to support sustainability in communities. Through smashing pumpkins, they can be composted and recycled rather than thrown into landfills, contributing to methane and Leachate production.
Other than doing good for the environment, just the act of smashing a pumpkin was exhilarating and memorable for several students and their family members as a fun and engaging way to involve the community with the environment we all live in.
“So many kids were excited to be a part of the process and that was super cool to see.” Said Madeline (Maddie) Pizzica.
If you somehow missed this event, there’s no need to worry. The pumpkin smash might’ve concluded, but Green Cougar’s activities for the year are far from over. According to Mrs. Zara-Brito, Sponour of the club, “we have already had a forest cleanup, of course, The Pumpkin Smash, and the biggest one is the plastic drive…We also would like to start a garden or composting; there are a lot of ideas that the members have, we just must decide on one.”