Teal Pumpkin Project

Have you heard about or seen a teal pumpkin at Halloween? I want to share about this great program for two reasons:
1) It’s a great project and I think we should try to be considerate of those with allergies being a severe allergy sufferer myself, and
2) It’s actually an easy way to host a more zero waste Halloween as a lot of the recommended ideas can be recycled or reused vs. traditional candy.

What’s the Teal Pumpkin Project®? 
The Teal Pumpkin Project encourages people to raise awareness of food allergies and promotes inclusion of all trick-or-treaters throughout the Halloween season. The nationwide movement offers an alternative for kids with
food allergies, as well as other children for whom candy is not an option. The steps to participate are:

  1. Provide non-food treats for trick-or-treaters.
  2. Place a teal pumpkin – the color of food allergy awareness –in front of your home to indicate you have non-food treats available.
  3. Add your home to the Teal Pumpkin Project map.
  4. Spread the word! Share the Teal Pumpkin Project with your friends and family.

An iconographic poster of treat ideas is available here.
A list of treat ideas is available here.
Remember to think recyclable and reusable! Things like rings for example can be decorations or party favors in the future.

The reason I’m sharing this is because last year I supported a fundraiser that sold teal-painted pumpkins. Unfortunately I found out after Halloween that painted pumpkins cannot be composted. So I had to throw the pumpkin in the trash.

Real pumpkins for compost should be devoid of all costumes, foam, google eyes, paint, etc. before being composted. If you cannot remove all the decorations, please trash your pumpkin instead.

Target is selling two sizes of teal pumpkins this year. If you take care of these and store them well, they can last a long time. They are fairly light so just be aware you may want to try to weight them down against the wind.

This is a fabric-covered orange pumpkin. It’s not official Furoshiki, the traditional Japanese wrapping cloth, but it did the trick so you to get the idea. I bought a section of fabric from the craft store and folded and wrapped until the pumpkin was covered. This provides two future opportunities: I can reuse the orange pumpkin for Thanksgiving and reuse the teal fabric for a craft project.

Other ideas:
– I’ve seen felted pumpkins made of wool which should last a long time as long as they are kept relatively dry.
– You could go to a thrift store for teal fabric items to sew/fabric tape/hot glue a pumpkin shape you stuff with scrap fabric to make your own shape, size and style of teal pumpkin. This would be a fun family activity!
– Paint a teal pumpkin on a wooden crate or paper box.
– Use metal paint (if it comes in teal) to paint an outdoor/garden pumpkin.

What other fun ideas do you have for outdoor teal pumpkins?