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A spooky good time at Peace, Love & Pumpkins

Story and Photos by Jessica Roda
Posted 10/19/21

BETHEL — A cool fall night was the perfect setting for the start of the first edition of Peace, Love & Pumpkins, an enchanting walk-thru Halloween experience at Bethel Woods, presented by …

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A spooky good time at Peace, Love & Pumpkins


BETHEL — A cool fall night was the perfect setting for the start of the first edition of Peace, Love & Pumpkins, an enchanting walk-thru Halloween experience at Bethel Woods, presented by The Kartrite Resort & Indoor Waterpark.
CEO Eric Frances said during opening remarks, “About a year ago, in response to COVID, the Bethel Woods full time staff began building a stunning drive-through holiday light show called Peace, Love & Lights. Forty-thousand visitors came to that over the holiday season and that will be returning. But the core of what we do here is bring people together whether that’s for a concert, whether that’s for a dinner and a chat about Van Gogh, a museum visit [at its core is] exciting. Our audiences told us day one more of these events and tonight’s an example of us bringing more of those to our community. So tonight we’re excited to watch Peace, Love & Pumpkins. It’s an artistic half a mile walk through our gardens and grounds with over 5,000 carved pumpkins and glowing displays. We teamed up with an extremely talented group of people called Art Through Hammer Productions that did an amazing job on this as well as our staff. You’ll see not only the normal Halloween stuff you’ll see into a part of our history and the Woodstock history that is here as well as pop culture, music and art in which we’re rooted in.”
“A few programs to note, please check the website as there are special things happening throughout the run of this event. We have Sensory friendly experience for those with complex disabilities. There’s a pumpkin paint and sip, family friendly version. A Night Market showcasing vendors on the last few nights of the event, Oct 30 and 31. There is discounted admission for students as well as people who dress up on Wednesdays and there’s also a bunch of other surprises. On Halloween, there’s a free event from 11-2pm, during the day where families can come for costume contests and treats and crafts.”
This family-friendly artistic walk-thru experience winds through the garden trails of the Bethel Woods grounds, highlighting an incredible amount of unique, hand-carved jack-o-lanterns and glowing pumpkin art. You’ll see many beautiful displays featuring Woodstock festival icons, dinosaurs, mermaids, Big Foot, and more as you walk the gentle half a mile loop.
Artist and Pumpkin Carver Will Teran, from the Newburgh area (of Art Through Hammer Productions), has been working on large art installations like this for the past 10 years for various companies. This is his first year branching out on his own with partners Matt Pelzer & wife Christina Novak of Art Through Hammer Productions. He said when asked by spectators how he creates each piece, “It’s a mix of painting and sculpture. It takes a lot of planning before we get here and then a lot of trade secrets to put everything together.” Will will be carving and giving demonstrations every night of the show at the Pumpkin Patch, located just after the end of the walk. If he finishes a new pumpkin piece, it might just make its way into the show. If feeling so inspired after the walk, pumpkins will be available for purchase at the Pumpkin Patch, ready to carve to your hearts desire.
Be sure to checkout bethelwoodscenter.org/events/peace-love-pumpkins for more information and special events happening during the event.


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