Spookley the Square Pumpkin
There is power in beloved children’s characters. They tell a story, and deliver a message. Combine them with agritourism, and it’s a win-win for farmers, parents, and kids.
Aaron Burakoff of New York City teamed up with Joe Troiano, an author and creator of a character called “Spookley the Square Pumpkin”. Aaron says he discovered there’s a whole world of agritourism farmers that could benefit from featuring this character in their pumpkin patches. It draws in the kids and teaches an important lesson.
"Spookley the square pumpkin is a square pumpkin who is teased and bullied by all the round pumpkins because he can’t roll around like they can, he’s a misfit until the big storm is going to roll all the round pumpkins away through the hole in the fence an into the ravine on the farm. Spookley with his square shape is able to block the hole and save the day," says Aaron. "So it’s a really nice story that the other pumpkins discover that you shouldn’t judge a book – or a pumpkin – by its cover and the things that make us different are the things that make us special."
Aaron’s company, Evergreen Creations, has developed a tool kit to help farmers build their agritainment offerings around the Spookley character.
"It could be things as simple as a story telling, so reading the book “The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin” to visitors, to things as elaborate as creating a Spookley-shaped corn maze," says Aaron. "If you look at the aerial view of the corn maze you’ll see Spookley’s likeness, and then there’s an interactive storybook trail along the path through the maze where you read Spookley’s story, and complete some bullying prevention activities along the way."
Aaron has developed a series of fairy tales with a farm twist such as Ciderella and the Glass Sipper, Jack and the Cornstalk, and Beauty and the Bees.
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