Hershey Gardens will host ‘Pumpkin Palooza’ event for Halloween season

The expanded, family-friendly event will be held on Oct. 22, 23, 29 and 30.

HERSHEY, Pa. — Hershey Gardens announced this week it will host Pumpkin Palooza, a new, family-friendly event for the Halloween season.

Pumpkin Palooza replaces Pumpkin Glow, the Gardens’ former fall event that made its debut in 2009, according to the MS Hershey Foundation.

The new event will be held from 9 am to 5 pm on Oct. 22-23 and Oct. 29-30.

“Pumpkin Palooza is a new, all-day experience created to better accommodate the growing attendance we’ve seen over the past several years,” said Amy Zeigler, senior director at Hershey Gardens. “We really focused on bringing a bigger ‘wow’ factor this year with amazing pumpkin mosaics and pumpkin arches, as well as more family-friendly activities and entertainment.

“Plus, you’ve got the backdrop of a thousand colorful mums and an indoor Butterfly Atrium.”

Children are encouraged to come dressed in costume and will receive a bag of candy, courtesy of The Hershey Company.

Here’s what Pumpkin Palooza has to offer:

Pumpkin Tree and Gallery of Student Hand-Painted Pumpkins

In addition to approximately 100 painted pumpkins, representing a variety of themes, on display throughout the Seasonal Display Garden, Pumpkin Palooza will feature a 14-foot “pumpkin tree” and a creative exhibit of 85 pumpkins hand-painted by art students from Milton Hershey School and Hershey High School.

Two murals, similar to mosaics, which gardeners created using hundreds of miniature pumpkins and squashes in various colors, will also be on display. One mural is of a giant spider and is 8′ x 8′; the other mural is 4′ x 4′ and is of a rose. Rounding out the fall theme will be displays of gourds, hay bales and ornamental grasses.

In the Creepy Creatures Gallery, visitors will discover a collection of live spiders, insects and small reptiles and amphibians, some of which guests will be able to hold. Animals on display include a tarantula, scorpion, jungle nymphs, walking sticks, skinks, various frog and snake species and a gecko.

Entertainment and Additional Offerings

Entertainment and additional offerings include the following:

Saturdays, Oct. 22 and Oct. 29

9 am – 5 pm: Palmyra Area Greenhouse Flower Truck, selling fresh-cut flowers

11 am and 1 pm: Puppet Show—Children’s Garden Amphitheater

11 am: “Wickedly Fun Cabaret”—Children’s Garden Amphitheater

1 p.m.: Cissy and the Man—Children’s Garden Amphitheater

1 p.m.: Cissy and the Man—Children’s Garden Amphitheater

Food trucks include Jack and Joan’s Kettle Corn, Shorty’s Funnel Cakes, Marsico’s Taste of Italy and Cheesesteak Shuttle.

A detailed Pumpkin Palooza schedule can be found at HersheyGardens.org.

Pumpkin Palooza is included in general admission, which includes entry into the indoor tropical Butterfly Atrium; members are free. General admission tickets can be purchased online at HersheyGardens.org or in person at the admissions desk upon arrival.

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