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South Middle hosts pumpkin decorating contest

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By Jesef Williams

She has a shiny face, red lips, long hair and wears a pointy black hat.
Any other day, she’d be all orange, but on Thursday she became the Queen Witch of South Middle School.
That was the name given to one of the several carved and decorated pumpkins on display at the school Thursday.
Last week, South Middle held its Spirit Week, which culminated with a pumpkin-decorating contest. Faculty and staff were divided into 14 teams, and the students voted on which team’s pumpkin they liked the best.
The five-member front office team, who turned a pumpkin into the witch, won the contest.
“We feel good about it,” team member Debbie Henry said. “It was a lot of work.”
The team inserted about 2,500 sequin push pins into the front of the pumpkin. The majority of the pins were silver, creating the witch’s skin. The eyes were made out of blue and green pins, while red pins created the lips.
They attached long black hair and topped it off with a tall black hat.
Donna Reeves, who was also part of that team, said it took about five hours to complete the design. Putting all those push pins in place was the most time consuming.
“We had fun,” Reeves said. “It was a little bonding time, just to do something together.”
The administration team painted a muscle-clad stallion on its pumpkin, along with the phrase “Horse Power” on top of the horse. They placed horse shoes next to it as added decoration.
While those two groups went heavy on the decorations, other teams opted for carved designs.
One team carved “Batman” and the Batman logo into its pumpkin. Another group carved “SMS” while another carved a stallion, the school’s mascot.
Seventh-grader Rico Talford liked the stallion carving the best.
“It’s our symbol,” he said. “It represents South.”
Fellow seventh-grader Tykeyona McCullough leaned another way. She voted for the eventual winner – the widely celebrated witch.
“It’s pretty and it’s better than all of the other ones,” she said. “It was creative.”
South Middle’s Spirit Week featured Tacky Day, Cowboy and Cowgirl Camouflage Day, as well as Red and White Day.
On Friday, teachers read ghost stories and participated in a school-wide bake-off of Halloween treats.
“They had some fun,” Principal Joyce Crimminger said. “It was good stress relief.”

Contact reporter  Jesef Williams at (803) 283-1152