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October 18, 2006 - Pay At The Pumpkin

Halloween is only two witches away. And even if you’re not going to dress up like sexy ketchup or Marianne from Gilligan’s Island, you still might be in the mood to do a little monster mash of your own by buying a pumpkin. Placing the orange squash fruit outside your front door is a good way to get into the Fall spirit and offer a warm welcome to little trick-or-treaters who knock on your door on the special day.

If you don’t carve your pumpkin, it will stay orange and fall-like long after the candy is gone.
From our experience it will stay nice until December when the Christmas decorations come out.

As we all know Peter, the pumpkin eater, put his wife in a pumpkin shell. But, it never says in the rhyme where he bought that larger than life squash. Did he grow it himself? Buy it at the grocery store? Or, buy it at a pumpkin patch?

Yesterday, the dedicated staff of edhat.com was on the scene at locations where pumpkins were being sold. We went to three pumpkin patches and three grocery stores.

The grocery stores have a plethora of pumpkins that they display outside the door, enticing shoppers to make a purchase before they have even walked inside. At Von’s ($6.99) and Albertson’s ($5.00), many of the pumpkins are still in the brown box in which they arrived from the grower.
No Patch
At the Goleta Ralphs ($4.99), the pumpkins are displayed in a quaint rural scene. All the grocery store pumpkins were about the size of a basketball. Even if you could have found a volleyball-sized pumpkin (like we asked for in yesterday’s contest), it would have cost the same.

The average price of the grocery store pumpkins was $5.66.

At the showgrounds, a monster-sized orange canopy casts an orangey glow over the pumpkin picking area. Just as the nearby statue tricks us all into thinking that it’s Earl Warren riding a horse, the pumpkin patch tricks us into thinking that it’s a pumpkin patch. It seems that the real treat the kiddies come for are the rides. From the size chart on the counter, we guessed that the volleyball pumpkin would have cost $8.00.

Yesterday afternoon, the Lane Farms Pumpkin Patch on Hollister in Goleta was an overflowing cauldron of pumpkins, and kids on a field trip. They have hayrides and talking scarecrows. The also have animals that you cannot feed.
The $5.00 pumpkin looked about the right size - like what we’ve seen on the AVP tour.

The last stop on our pumpkin patch tour was Big Wave Dave’s on Hope. The nice woman working there told us that the pumpkins they sell come from Moorpark. She guessed that the grocery stores got their pumpkins from Oregon, where they’re cheaper and lighter. And yes, there is a Dave. He lives in Ventura. And, while the pumpkin patch is good fun, Dave’s big wave is Christmas Trees. There is no gray area (or orange area) when buying pumpkins from Dave. The size chart there isn’t just $5, $10, $15. They have all the sizes in between as well. Our Edhat size gauge pegged their pumpkin pricing as pretty much parallel to Lane Farms - $5.00 for the volleyball size.

The average price of the pumpkin patch pumpkins was $6.33.

The winner of the contest was Talliesue, with a guess of $5.87, $6.50. Talliesue wins the treat of an Edhat t-shirt (orange logo).

Yesterday, we took some pumpkin patch pictures. Check 'em out!

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