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It's the Great Pumpkin Coastal Carve Off!

(Turtle carving by Leanne Davis) (Tree carving by Hope Brooks)

The Smithsonian Environmental Research Center is holding its first Pumpkin Carve-Off Contest. Of course, we’ve put an environmental twist on our contest – coastal zone science. We want you to let your creative flag fly and carve your pumpkin(s) featuring some aspect of the science of the coasts. This can be anything from Maryland’s famous blue crab to a diagram illustrating the life cycle of a coastal zone plant to a chemical process like ocean acidification. The possibilities are endless. It doesn’t even need to involve water – land within a coastal zone counts!

Some quick details:

We will be running the contest through our Facebook page. Key entry rules include:

  • Post a picture of carved pumpkin(s) or display of multiple carved pumpkins to our Facebook page timeline (https://www.facebook.com/smithsonian.serc). Only entries posted directly to the timeline will be eligible – don’t just tag us in the post!
  • Please use the hashtag #SERCCarveOff in the body of your post
  • Minors (less than 18 years of age) can participate but must submit entry or entries through a parent or legal guardian • Each pumpkin entry must have some carving, but entries are not limited to carving – decorating with paint, glitter, etc. is allowed and encouraged
  • Each pumpkin entry must feature some aspect of coastal zone science (this includes oceans, estuaries, freshwater systems and terrestrial areas within a watershed).
  • Each entry must depict real pumpkins, like the kind that grow in a field (i.e. no foam or craft pumpkins are allowed)
  • Smithsonian employees, research associates, volunteers and their immediate families are not eligible for a prize
  • If you enter a pumpkin image, you agree to let us share your creative masterpiece on our social media, in newsletters or brochures or for other standard Smithsonian uses

Two (2) winners will be chosen, one for Originality and the other for Artistry. The Originality winner will be based on the originality and creativity of entry (e.g. use of pumpkin, coastal zone science concept, etc.), and the Artistry winner will be based on skill and execution of pumpkin design. Contest begins on Monday, October 26, and ends Friday, October 30, at 5pm ET. Winners will be announced on Facebook at 3pm ET on Halloween. Prizes include up to $30 of SERC apparel and merchandise. Don’t you think a SERC hoodie would be perfect this time of year?

Let your creative pumpkin carving juices flow! Let your science/art flag fly free! Be creative. Be bold. Think outside the box. Knock our Halloween socks off with your #SeriouslyAmazing pumpkin art

Full contest rules and guidelines

What? We didn’t answer all your questions about the Carve Off? Contact us via email at SERCPumpkinContest@si.edu.