Every year we have a backyard Halloween party and one of the most fun activities for the children is the pumpkin painting.
Here's some tips!
: Pick an area in your backyard away from the adult traffic and assign someone the "duty" of making sure that all the children get started on their pumpkin early, before dusk sets in. We try to have this as one of the first activities on arrival. Choose a level place in the yard and cover a table with a plastic cloth. Sometimes we've used an old metal watering trough turned upside down and covered or even a few bales of hay.
Choose water soluble paints - no permanent markers! Poster paints in small jars; jumbo markers, and glitter paints. Provide a wide assortment of brushes from narrow to wide and small glasses of water for rinsing. Keep a box of wet wipes at the station for cleaning hands and some paper towels for cleaning brushes between paints. Just plan on getting new paints each year because they will double dip into more than one color))
The first couple of years when we had our Halloween party, I started out buying nice size pumpkins in the 5-10 pound range. Actually smaller pumpkins work better, are less expensive and easier to manage for most kids. Depending on the age range of the kids, I still try to provide an assortment with a few larger ones. Choose pumpkins with long stems that are firmly attached. Don't handle the pumpkins by the stems or some will pull out before you're finished. The smaller "pie" size pumpkins are great along with orange gourds that look like little pumpkins. Choose pumpkins with lumps, bumps, curly stems, flat sides....creamy white and orange ones. Perfectly formed pumpkins are great, but the ones with small oddities can result in the most unique creations. Wash pumpkins to have plenty of time to dry before the party, preferably a day ahead of time. Rinse with a dilute mixture of bleach and water to help prevent fungus and mildew.
Once the kids have finished their creations, set the pumpkins somewhere to dry out of the night air. And don't forget to remind them to collect theirs on the way home!
Even the smallest of kids are capable of creating masterpieces))) Well....okay, maybe it's not a masterpiece......but it's always special to us grannies)