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Garden Club kicks off fall with Pumpkin Patch
The Pumpkin Lady smiles for the camera Oct. 7 during the Richmond Hill Garden Clubs 18th annual Pumpkin Patch at J.F. Gregory Park in Richmond Hill. - photo by Bryan Browning

The Richmond Hill Garden Club hosted its 18th annual Pumpkin Patch fundraiser at the J.F. Gregory Park pavilion Oct. 7.

The event featured a bountiful array of mums rich in autumn colors, pumpkins of every size nestled on bales of straw, scarecrows and pumpkin painted rocks that were hidden throughout for a pleasant surprise.

In addition, there was an abundance of other decorative items for sale like wreaths, signs, baskets, and the well-known Spider on a Stick. Many of the pieces were crafted by garden members.  

Families were able to take the perfect fall picture because of the various staged areas adorned with sights of the season. 

Another extension of the Richmond Hill Garden Club in full swing at the Pumpkin Patch was the Green Thumb Kids Project.  This initiative helps kids learn about gardening by not only allowing them to select a plant to take home and nurture, but also giving them planting advice. 

This year, around 700 plants were distributed along with instructions on how to garden. 

“This is a wonderful community event.  If you have little ones, this is the place to be,” said Karen Hadden, a first time volunteer at the Pumpkin Patch. “It’s the feeling of fall. There are not too many places in the south along the coast where you can get the feeling of fall.”

There were plenty of games, like bean bag toss, a fish pond, ring the pumpkin toss and Ghost Darts, which was a new addition this year. Children were also able to enjoy a blast from the past as they played smash hits like Pumpkin Wheel of Fortune and Creepy Feels.

“I just like that everybody comes out just to have a good time.  It’s fun and family friendly.” Said Lacresha Brittan, who was attending her second Pumpkin Patch.

Professional face painter Lisa McCann and her interns offered face-painting designs that brought plenty of smiles.  Also available were delectable home baked treats like cookies, cakes, muffins and Halloween-themed foods. 

Rachel Smith and her family were first-timers at this year’s fundraiser, but they plan to return next year. 

“I like it,” she said. “They have a lot of stuff and I can’t believe how crowded it is. We really just wanted to get some pumpkins for our daughter to decorate and some mums.”


The Pumpkin Patch is the Richmond Hill Garden Club’s largest fundraiser and enables them to complete many community projects, include maintaining landscaping at its garden in Henderson Park, the library, and other areas in town. 

They also distribute 1,500 daffodil bulbs during the Christmas parade, purchase gardening and nature books for the Richmond Hill Public Library, donate to local charities such as the Way Station, and provide a $1,000 scholarship for a deserving senior at Richmond Hill High School. 

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