KENOVA, W.Va. (WOWK) — The Kenova Pumpkin House is a fall tradition for many in West Virginia and beyond, but it will only be on display for one week in 2023.
The attraction is made up of 3,000 pumpkins, has become one of the more popular tourist attractions in West Virginia and is the centerpiece of Ceredo-Kenova Autumnfest. Pumpkin House Owner Ric Griffith said they see around 50,000 visitors from all over each year.
This project started as a small display back in 1978 with only five pumpkins, but it’s only grown since then.
This year, along with the thousands of pumpkins that need to be scooped and carved, Griffith is also setting up a new LED light show with lit-up pumpkins in sync with popular Mountain State and classical music.
“We have an additional part of the show with the pumpkin orchestra and choir that will be a pixel light show above it that depicts whatever the music is playing,” Griffith said Thursday afternoon.
This is a lot of hard work for volunteers like Pearl “Fox” Heaberlin, but he said it’s worth it.
“Of course, we get a kick out of watching the people come through and the kids and all the folks from all over,” Heaberlin said as he built the wood displays for the pumpkins.
Along with the volunteers on the ground, local schools have volunteered to carve some pumpkins. Griffith said while all this help is appreciated, they could still use some extra hands to make sure the house is ready by Oct. 27.
“On the 21st of October, we ask the volunteers from the community that wishes to come to show up and we’ll let children scoop and adults carve,” Griffith said.
Once all this work is done, they’ll start lighting up the pumpkins and putting them on display. The Ceredo-Kenova Autumnfest will start Oct. 27 and the displays will be up until Nov. 2.
According to a Facebook event, the Kenova Pumpkin House opening will be from Oct. 27 to Oct. 31 from 6-10 p.m. daily. Entry is free and and open to the public.
See more old photos of the house at the “Pumpkin Gallery” on the Griffith and Feil Soda Fountain website.