Staff and Volunteers at Muncaster Castle have been nurturing and growing pumpkin plants over the last few months in time for a pre-Halloween pumpkin competition. Rivalry amongst the competitors has been the talk of the Castle with sneaky tricks, secret recipes, and cunning plans for growing the largest and heaviest Pumpkin. There have even been threats of pumpkin sabotage heard on the ‘vine! 

It all started with baby pumpkin plants! 

“It has certainly given them ‘pumpkin’ to talk about!” said Castle Curator, Sharon Arrowsmith, who has organised the competition. 

The pumpkin growers have become quite attached to their orange friends. Daily routines including stroking, singing too, talking to and tickling have become the norm. However, there have been a few pumpkin pitfalls along the way – some perfectly formed pumpkins have been reduced to squash by the adverse weather! 

The competition finale is this Saturday when all the successfully grown pumpkins will be judged in various categories. The public are invited to cheer on the competitors as well as enter their own creations into the open ‘Best Dressed’ Pumpkin category. There will also be a raffle, games, and stalls to enjoy in the Castle’s Stable Yard. 

Judging of the Muncaster Pumpkins will take place at 12.30pm and entrants from the public will be judged at 2pm. At 3.15pm there will be an auction of donated Pumpkins and produce. All money raised from the event and competition will be split between Cancer Research UK and Conservation Projects at Muncaster Castle. 

This event is all part of the preparations for Muncaster’s annual Halloween Festival which will take place on Friday 25th, Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th October PLUS Thursday 31st October, Friday 1st and Saturday 2nd November. Head over to for all details of upcoming events at Muncaster Castle. 


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