There were 9,567 lit pumpkins in Laconia’s downtown for its first Pumpkin Festival this past weekend. Thousands of spectators gathered around the city all enjoying the festivities.
The City of Keene hosted this annual event for over 20 years and Laconia was proud to take over this year and host this great event.
Hats off to all those involved; city officials, department heads, Ruth Sterling; the event organizing, Charlie St. Claire (who was responsible for connecting the organizers of this event with Laconia officials).
It was amazing walking around Laconia’s downtown, which has recently undergone many improvements to its entrance and corridor. There were nearly a thousand twinkling pumpkins stacked on a 35ft tower creating a focal point for the festival. The day kicked off with the children’s costume parade which looped through downtown, all the children were decked out in great Halloween costumes, and Cinderella’s Pumpkin coach from Storyland lead the parade! All sorts of events were going on throughout the day, including ‘pumpkin bowling’ and a haunted house at the Belknap Mill. When I stopped by, the wait was over hour to enter, and the lines lead across the Winnipesaukee River’s footbridge. The food and craft courts were packed with long lines and all sorts of pumpkin décor surrounded the area. There was a jazz band and other entertainment throughout the day.
Looking around, there were spectators from all over the state as well was neighboring states enjoying the day’s activities. The cash registers were ringing downtown for all the local merchants. All the eateries and restaurants were packed, so many newcomers were able to get their first look at downtown Laconia. This is hopefully the beginning of another great annual event the Lakes Region can be proud of. Congratulations for all those involved! Everyone I’ve talked to said the event went off extremely well and they’re very proud to apart of our community.
By Frank Roche, President of Roche Realty Group