The sun was out for the 2012 Pumpkin Festival on Saturday, and along with it came area families, many with youngsters in tow.
Michael Grossman, President of the Whitemarsh Business Association, which hosts the event, says he believes this year's festival drew several thousand people. A clear indication was that by about 3 p.m., contestants had claimed all of the two thousand prizes that had been purchased for the festival’s carnival games.
"It's been a great day, and we've been very busy," said Grossman. "I think the moon bounce is the favorite for young kids, and also the pony rides and pumpkin patch."
As the main organizer for the event, Grossman has dealt with some new challenges since moving to Plymouth Whitemarsh High School's Victory Fields last year. However, in the second year, Grossman says the organization made better use of the space, bringing in extra moon bounces and allowing vendors to rent tents.
Local businesses such as the Institute of Dance Artistry and Destolfo's Premier Martial Arts held performances for attendees, while Maple Acres Farm provided a hayride and pumpkin decoration station.
"It's another great day of bringing the community together, and the [WBA] did a great job putting it together," said Whitemarsh Supervisor Chair Bob Hart.
The Whitemarsh Police Department was also on hand to provide not only extra security, but also to interact with the community in a friendly setting.
"It's a great opportunity to be out and have a chance to talk to people and the kids in a nice, festive setting," said Michael Beaty, Police Chief for the WPD.
While it may be a fun day for the younger children in the community, it ultimately benefits those a little older who may soon be leaving it. Proceeds from the event go directly to the WBA's scholarship fund.
"Last year we gave about $3,000 at the annual scholarship night," said Grossman, adding that the WBA has awarded about $50,000 in scholarships over the past decade. "Hopefully this year we'll be able to donate even more."
Grossman said that a number of area businesses donated to the event, and that Whitemarsh Township was this year's largest donor.
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