Slater Baptist Church uses a field of pumpkins as an outreach opportunity.
All summer Ron Stone, a member of SBC, tended his pumpkin patch with help from people from the church. Jay A. helped plant thousands of seeds. As the plants grew, so did the weeds. Weeds are a big deal—let them grow and they take over. Friends showed up to pull weeds, hoe weeds, and spray weeds. Then there are bugs that make holes in the pumpkins; they must be sprayed. The drought in July meant the end of the pumpkins until Ed S. and Marvin N. carried 2200 gallons of water to the patch and saved the crop. Lastly came raccoon attacks; they would come every night and take a bit out of the best specimens. But finally the pumpkins were ready for harvest. Church members became pickers who arrived to pick and sort pumpkins; soon pickups moved slowly into the patch to be loaded with beautiful orange and green, large and small pumpkins which were hauled to storage in a garage in Slater. The pumpkins were ready for the big day.
On Saturday morning, October 14, villagers and country folk arrived on Slater’s Main Street for the Firemen’s Breakfast, and down the street Slater Baptist Church was giving away pumpkins of every size and shape one could imagine. True, it was a drizzly morning but with tarps and umbrellas and happy faces and a determination to meet and greet new faces, church members young, old and in between helped folks pick out the perfect pumpkin and get it to a vehicle. It was fun to watch children try to carry away pumpkins that weighed more than they did.
We gave sacks to all visitors to our Pumpkin Give Away. All adults and children received in a tract; children received information about Awana, candy, a ball, a bracelet; adults were given general information about the church services, lotion, lip gloss, and candy. After all, everybody likes candy.
The Pumpkin Give Away was a bonding experience for the church members and friends and a successful opportunity to connect with the community. We thank God for a bountiful harvest.