Each year Pasadena kids and their parents flock to the Pumpkin Festival at Kidspace Children's Museum. The free fest, held the weekend before Halloween, was going strong and hot on Oct. 27. The 31/2 acres of Brookside Park in front of the museum was well utilized as thousands of community kids, parents, uncles, aunts, grandparents and friends visited between 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. over the two days. (Last year's attendance was estimated at more than 20,000).
A photo op was the pumpkin patch. Three-month-old Sophia Wong was plopped in the middle of a pumpkin just her size. Dad Will Wong wielded the camera before Sophia had enough of the pumpkin. While the picture-taking was taking place, mom Elaine Wong, made sure Sophia's big sister Abigail Wong, 20-months-old, didn't wander off into the friendly clutches of a ghost or goblin. This Pasadena family regularly attends Kidspace activities.
More Pasadena residents were 6-year-old Chloe Sarault and mom Joanna Sarault. Both stuck their heads in the middle of a fall farm scene backdrop. Dad Paul Sarault snapped their picture. The Saraults live in what they call “Bungalow Heaven.”
Erin Powell from Glendale toted along daughters “Little Red Riding Hood” Quinn Powell, 3, and “Princess” Harper Powell, 5.
Visitors had the chance to attend free live musical performances, look at crafts and snap up promotional giveaways from Radio Disney.
Tickets for purchase were necessary for the bouncers, pony rides and food and lemonade, seemingly bought by the gallon on the sizzling afternoon. A petting zoo was also available for a dollar or two. Gently used costumes and books were also on site for sale.
The Pumpkin Festival is put together by members of the museum's volunteer support group, Circle of Friends. The group's goal is to offer the youngest of children a safe and fun way to celebrate fall. Kidspace donors provided free festival tickets to more than 350 scholarship children from Urban Compass, Mother's Club, Hillside and Coach Art.
Last year Circle of Friends members raised over $120,000 in net proceeds at the Pumpkin Festival. The funds will support Kidspace Children's Museum exhibits and activities in the humanities, arts and sciences.
Two Pasadena residents recently had some fun behind the scenes of the latest production at the 400-seat Glendale Centre Theatre. “Aladdin & the Princess,” running on Saturday mornings and part of the theater's children's series, is drawing large crowds. When the show was over for the morning, the production's director Erin Villaverde and son 6-year-old Malcolm Villaverde took advantage of playing in the mouth of the prop “Audrey II.” Audrey II is the giant man-eating plant from the theatre's previous musical for the more mature crowd, “Little Shop of Horrors.”
“Aladdin & The Princess” runs through Nov. 17.
But what a Halloween costume Audrey could have been.
RUTH SOWBY may be reached at email@example.com.