National Pumpkin Day- October 26th
By Rachelle Golde, Children’s Librarian
It is officially pumpkin season. Pumpkins are the favorite autumnal decorations and with some added spice, one of the favorite tastes of the season as well. Pumpkins are so popular in the United States that they have their own special day. National Pumpkin Day is celebrated on October 26th.
Here are some fun facts about pumpkins:
- Pumpkins have been growing in the United States for longer than the U.S. has been a country. Scientists have found evidence of pumpkins and pumpkin seeds that date back to between 7000-5000 BC.
- In the United States, pumpkins were first grown by the indigenous people of North America. Pumpkins were a very important part of their diets through the winter months because they are high in nutrients and will last a long time before spoiling.
- The practice of carving jack-o’-lanterns came to the United States through Scottish and Irish immigrants in the 1800s. For many families this is a traditional part of celebrating fall and Halloween today.
- Pumpkins are a fruit and are delicious to eat in many recipes. There are many recipes for pumpkin breads, muffins, cake, soups, and even risotto. Try roasting the seeds from your jack-o’-lantern pumpkin for a healthy and tasty snack.
Reading books about pumpkins is another great way to get into the pumpkin season. Here are some fun children’s books featuring pumpkins that can be found at the Litchfield Public Library.
“We’re Going on a Pumpkin Hunt” by Mary Hogan Wilcox– A group of children set out at night to find the largest pumpkin. Along the way they encounter a scary Jack-o-lantern and overcome their fears to return home for pumpkin pie.
“Pumpkin day!” by Candice Ransom– In this easy-reader picture book, a boy and his family visit a pumpkin patch where they ride on a cart, see farm animals and pick out the perfect pumpkin.
“Froggy Picks a Pumpkin” by Jonathan London– Froggy goes to the pumpkin patch with his class and has an adventure picking out a contest-winning pumpkin.
“Life Cycle of a Pumpkin” by Ron Fridell– This nonfiction picture book introduces the plant life cycle of a pumpkin.
Until next time, happy reading!