Left Hand Valley Courier - All Local, All The Time

By Aurelia Pollard

Costumes, candy & fun


October 19, 2016

File photo The Grundy family of parents Peter and Christa, and daughters Lily and Eliza, came in costume to enjoy the festivities of Niwot’s Great Pumpkin Party last year.

Halloween is the one day of the year children and adults can be anything or anyone else they want to be.

Niwot has embraced this holiday for over two decades by hosting the Great Pumpkin Party, giving families the opportunity to dress up and walk in a parade; children can trick or treat at local businesses, take hayrides and visit a petting zoo.

Pat Murphy of Niwot Real Estate has been organizing this event, put on by the Niwot Business Association, for nearly 25 years. Since its beginning as a small meeting, the event has only been canceled one time due to weather.

“It evolved from just a meeting at the Reverend Taylor’s Restaurant,” Murphy said. “There was one time we had to cancel, but a few kids came when there was a blizzard. That was a fun one.”

Trick or treating will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at businesses along 2nd Avene and in Cottonwood Square.

Murphy said most businesses have candy and goodies for kids, while some are trying to hand out healthier snacks.

The parade will begin at 11:30 a.m. in the parking lot of the Niwot Liquor store and continue down two blocks of 2nd Avenue. “Anybody can walk in it, even if you’re not dressed up,” Murphy said of the parade.

Also, there will be a petting zoo set up behind Niwot Real Estate from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Hayrides are available at 2nd Avenue and Franklin from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. as well.

After the parade there’s a dog costume contest again this year, put on by Left Hand Animal Hospital, with volunteers to help hold the contest. All dogs are welcome to come in their best costume. Some families even coordinate with their pets.

“It’s just a fun, quiet [event],” Murphy said. “It’s not over the top, not too commercial. That’s what we try not to make it. It’s just a nice day.”

Even with all the different parts of this event, Murphy said she doesn’t need a large amount of volunteers, but there are several people who do a lot to help out.

“The Niwot Community Association is closing the roads,” Murphy said. “The Nygren family donates pumpkins and Jeff Lambert at the Niwot Inn always has some special things going on—he likes Halloween.”

When the Great Pumpkin Party first started, Murphy said she would rely on other local businesses to help fund the event. “How it started is I would go to businesses and they would donate $25 to carry on,” Murphy explained. “That was a nice volunteer [effort] where everyone donated, and now the LID pays for it.”

When asked why Murphy continues to organize the event, she simply said, “It’s my favorite holiday to do,” adding she enjoys seeing all the children and families dressed up and having fun.

Niwot’s Great Pumpkin Party will be on Saturday, Oct. 29 starting with trick or treating at 10 a.m. For more information contact Murphy at 303-652-2626.


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