Mountain Views News, Sierra Madre Edition [Pasadena] Saturday, October 15, 2016

MVNews this week:  Page A:3


Mountain View News Saturday, October 15, 2016 

Walking Sierra Madre…The Social Side 

by Deanne Davis

“It’s Halloween! It’s Halloween! The moon is full 
and bright. And we shall see what can’t be seen on 
any other night. Skeletons and ghosts and ghouls, 
grinning goblins fighting duels, werewolves rising 
from their tombs, witches on their magic brooms. In 
masks and gowns we haunt the street and knock on 
doors for trick or treat. Tonight we are the king and 
queen, for oh, tonight, it’s Halloween!” 

Jack Prelutsky

The giant pumpkins on Alegria have at last been 
harvested and all that remains are dry, twisted 
vines. They’ve been harvested, dear Halloween 
loving friends, but they are not by any means gone 
or forgotten. Parker and Heather, those growers 
of amazing pumpkins, are gearing up for the best 
Halloween display ever. Oh the sights you’ll see 
when you visit Sierra Madre’s Halloween Street! 
It was my delighted pleasure to visit Parker’s 
Pumpkin Porch and Patch last Saturday, where 
Halloween is already in the works. A new pirate 
skeleton, complete with skeleton parrot on his 
shoulder, still in his box, will be joining all the 
other ghastly, ghouly inhabitants of Parker’s 
Pumpkin Fantasy in just a couple of weeks. 

 The Parker house, built in 1910, is total 
Halloween, including orange spider-web fabric on 
their couch. Pumpkins, bats and spiders spill out 
from unexpected places, creating a charmingly 
friendly Halloween-y home. The pumpkin 
growing started in 1999 when the store-bought 
pumpkins they had carved started to cave in, 
as jack-o-lanterns sadly do. Parker tossed them 
out into the Back 40 and, much to their surprise, 
these pumpkins put down roots and started to 
grow! At their peak year, 35 or 40 giant beauties 
grew on Parker Acres and this year, a good year, in 
spite of the deer and the water restrictions, there 
are pumpkins galore of all shades and sizes. Who 
knew deer loved pumpkins! But they do. Parker 
once stepped away from the fenced enclosure 
where the tender young vines, laden with pumpkin 
blossoms were stretching themselves toward the 
sun; a marauding deer noticed an opening, slipped 
in and in seconds ate every single blossom. So 
discouraged he almost quit the pumpkin business 
altogether, Parker received so many encouraging 
notes on the Sierra Madre Facebook page that he 
squared his shoulders and keep on cultivating. 

 New sculptures and structures are coming this 
year, possibly a carousel. The Snagon – part snake, 
part dragon – will be back, with a face carved by 
Heather’s brother, Chris, who makes a pilgrimage 
out from North Carolina every year to carve 
pumpkins. Parker creates the body, a structural 
engineering marvel, employing many of their 
smaller pumpkins. Look for their 14 Cinderella 
pumpkins, which are a flat variety, the perfect 
shape for wheels on racecars and motorcycles. 
Inspired by a picture in a Martha Stewart 
magazine, the lamp table was real 
looking that a couple wandering by commented 
that it was certainly interesting how these people 
brought some of their furniture out to augment the 
pumpkins, not realizing that was all pumpkin they 
were seeing.

 Big Mac, which is the 100+ pound variety, 
Atlantic Giants, you’ll see them all and, 
incidentally, all the really big ones have names! 
Look for the giant spider with fabric covered legs 
sewn by Heather’s sister. It’s definitely a family 
affair. Heather’s mother always made Halloween 
special and the Parker family is continuing in 
that tradition, serving gallons of hot apple cider 
to thirsty trick or treaters. Everything, of course, 
was inspired by Bud Switzer’s hundreds of carved 
pumpkins in years gone by. Bud’s out of the carving 
business now, but you’ll see him Halloween Eve 
looking at all that’s going on to keep Halloween 
alive and well on Alegria. 

 Parker and Heather especially enjoy the night 
after Halloween when all the visitors have taken 
their candy home to count and Sierra Madreans 
come out to see the amazing work that has been 
done and chat for a few minutes with Heather and 
Parker, the delightful Alegria pumpkin growers. 
Stop by and say hi and keep looking for scarecrows 
all over town. There are some really nifty ones!

 “When witches go riding and black cats are 
seen, the moon laughs and whispers, ‘tis near 

 My book page: Deanne Davis


 “A Tablespoon of Love, A Tablespoon of 
Laughter” is available there…

 As are all the Emma Gainsworth Pumpkin 


During this time period, the Sierra Madre Police 
Department responded to approximately 198 day 
and night time calls for service. 

Monday, October 3 

Sierra Madre PD responded to the 100 block of 
W. Highland Ave. regarding a vandalism report at 
about 7:00 a.m. The school principal told officers 
that someone threw a lemon through a north 
facing window pane. It appears that unknown 
suspect(s) grabbed a lemon from a lemon tree and 
threw it at the window causing it to break. 

Case forwarded to Detectives 

Theft from vehicle reports: 


At about 11:00 p.m. from the 100 block of E. Sierra 
Madre Blvd. personal items from inside the vehicle. 


Around 6:00 p.m., in the 100 block of E. Esperanza, 
personal items taken from inside the vehicle. 


Around 7:45 a.m., in the 600 block of E. Grandview, 
rear license plate of the vehicle was stolen. 


About 8:30, in the 300 block of Camillo Street, 
personal items and gift cards stolen from inside 

Stolen Vehicles 

-On 10/9/16 at about 10:15 a.m., the victim 
discovered her car missing from her driveway in 
the 100 block of W. Carter Ave. The vehicle is a 
White, 2013 Audi Q5. 

Between the hours of 10:30 p.m. on 10/8/16 and 
8:30 a.m. on 10/9/16 a vehicle was stolen from the 
victim’s driveway in the 400 block of W. Highland 
Ave. Vehicle is described as a White, 2014 Land 
Rover Range Rover. Vehicles were entered into the 
stolen vehicle database and surrounding agencies 
were notified. 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: