The Proud Pumpkin: A Wedding’s Most Versatile Vegetable

It’s hard to find a way around pumpkin in autumn, no matter how unseasonable the weather gets. I wait for weeks with bated breath for pumpkin spice lattes to hit the shelves no matter how much it still feels like summer, and nothing puts a smile on my face faster than a trip to my neighborhood pumpkin patch. The orange gourd’s versatility makes them great decorating tools, and there aren’t many of my favorite dishes that can’t be improved with a little pumpkin spicing.

So, for your impending autumn wedding, you might want to use pumpkins…

To Welcome your Guests

This is a bit of décor that scales up or down on the difficulty scale depending on the amount of energy you want to dedicate to finding and carving the perfect set of pumpkins. Set up a pumpkin(s) to spell out a personal welcome message for your guests as they arrive to your ceremony/reception. If your wedding falls around dusk, think about setting up the pumpkins at the ceremony space and having them transported to your reception venue with a candle or candles to add a little after-sunset illumination. If you want something that will last a little longer (and you aren’t so confident concerning your carving abilities), some craft stores (such as Michael’s) offer imitation pumpkins with personalized messages.

To Imbibe

Make pumpkin patches a little more adult-friendly by adding a little orange to your signature cocktails. The subtle nod of the cocktail allows you a more grown-up take on the familiar flavor, while the more conspicuous decorative additions, such as candy corn or black licorice, help take these cocktails to the next level around Halloween. Think about including such famous delicious brews as “Pumpkin Spice” or the “Pumpkin Margarita,” or you can ask your bartender what his or her favorite pumpkin delights are around this glorious season.

To Show Guests to Their Seats

Though mini pumpkins are often ignored at pumpkin patches by excited and optimistic youth, decoration gurus know how indispensable the mini gourd can be for holiday displays. If you aren’t a florist, building your own overfilled cornucopia or elaborate centerpiece might be a bit of a challenge. I recommend using mini pumpkins as place cards instead, either at each place setting for a small affair or at an escort card table. The mini pumpkins double as take-home favors when you hollow them out and fill them with goodies. Attach hand-written or hand-stamped cards to the stem of the pumpkin with twine to add a little touch of autumn authenticity to your event tables.