We couldn’t be in America without visiting a Halloween event, could we? Friends recommended the Jack o’lantern Blaze at Croton-on-Hudson in New York, and we were lucky enough to get tickets. This event sells out weeks beforehand, but I think I happened to be online when a new batch was released for an 8:30pm time slot on Tuesday. So I bought the tickets in a bit of a panic, but didn’t really know what it was I was buying them for!…
It turns out The Blaze at Croton-on-Hudson is what I would call a pumpkin extravaganza! You are welcomed with an archway of carved pumpkins and then there are thousands upon thousands of them! It must take an army of workers to get them all ready. We followed the path which takes you past themed areas such as zodiac symbols, birds hanging from trees; pottery-style patterns; a group of cats…all sorts of things! Then there’s the bigger displays such as the merry-go-round with massive giant gourds and pumpkins instead of horses; a very tall statue of liberty, a moving windmill; a P.T.Barnum circus train full of animals made up of pumpkins; a massive spider web with hundreds of pumpkins with spiders carved into them. It was quite amazing!
Many of the pumpkins were lit with electric strings of lights, which was perfectly understandable, but also, many of them were lit with candles, which must take forever to light and must be a back-breaking task. The lanterns lighting the way here and there were also real candles, which does add to the magic. I also loved the fact that all the trees around and above us were lit up like the trees at Montacute last year, which although you don’t necessarily notice it at first because of course your attention is on the pumpkin carvings, when you stop and look further you realise that the effect really enhances the fairytale atmosphere.
It was a chilly night, and I took the opportunity to wear my new Joe Browns purple coat out for the first time. Chris brought along his camera to see if we could get any outfit shots for this blog, and although it was very busy and the lighting conditions were challenging to say the least, I think we did manage to get some good photos.
I mentioned this purple coat quite recently as being the reason for my Joe Browns order, and I’m not regretting it! You can also see it on video in the try-on haul on my YouTube channel. (Please subscribe – I’m nearly at my 1000 goal!) It’s a great colour and I think the style is really cool. I don’t think you can tell here, but it has thumb holes and a nice gathering detail on the cuffs. It fastens with a zip and then has two panels of fabric to tie up over the top of that. The effect is really flattering and I’m very pleased with the coat so far. A tiny gripe – when I first tried it on it was itchy, so I wouldn’t wear it over a strappy top; it would have to be a long-sleeved item underneath to keep it comfortable. It’s very warm though!
Just like my red coat keeps cropping up here and on my Instagram throughout winter, I’m sure this one will too, so there will no doubt be photos in daylight and with details coming soon. If you like the look of this purple coat, you will find it this season at the Joe Browns website.
At a leisurely pace and with several stops for photographs, the walk around The Blaze at Croton-on-Hudson took an hour. It’s wheelchair and pushchair friendly and not at all scary. Although the last scene with the jack o’lantern scarecrows and pumpkins hanging from the trees and gravestones all around, was pretty creepy. There’s a patch of pumpkin sunflowers and a brightly lit cottage on the other side though if you think you need to distract your little ones!
There’s a large shop full of merchandise and other halloween goodies, and a stall outside for snacks and drinks, although it was a fairly long queue. The price was $22 each, which I’ll be honest was a bit steep for a stretched one hour’s entertainment, albeit a unique one. I’m still glad we did it though, and it was nice to break up the week with an enjoyable evening out. If you’re looking for a non-scary Halloween event in New York state, then this is an excellent option. Of course I filmed the visit to The Blaze and that vlog will be on my YouTube channel soon. I’d love to know, do you have anything like this near where you live?