The Lit Pumpkin Rises


There is no need to stand in a pumpkin patch to wait for a great pumpkin to rise. At Descanso Gardens, hundreds of really great carved pumpkins have risen for the Halloween season. Rise of the Jack-o-Lanterns is on now at Descanso Gardens.

For those who have never been, Rise of the Jack-o-Lanterns is a family-friendly event featuring hundreds of hand-carved pumpkins by specialty artists along a one-third mile walking trail through the rose garden at Descanso.

Some of the pumpkins are just classicly carved pumpkins, some are carved as celebrities like Taylor Swift or Leonard Nimoy, some are just creepy carved faces that look realistic and some are carved as pieces, linking up with dozens of others to create a giraffe, classic cars, dinosaurs or even a 50-foot long Chinese dragon.

This is a great event for little ones and families, but it is also a nice reprieve for older kids and parents who are used to the jump scares at many of the other Halloween events. You can walk down a dark trail at night and not be afraid that someone is going to pop out at you from the shadows. Just walk along and enjoy your hot apple cider and take in the sights.

The tickets are $28 for general admission. That is a bit steep for what you get. The website says most guests take 45 minutes to one hour and 15 minutes on the trail, and personally, I took 41 minutes to go all the way along and take slow exposure pictures of every single display. If I was just walking through to enjoy it, I probably would have been closer to 30 minutes. The crowds are plentiful but not overwhelming. It is a fairly well-organized show, keeping people moving along consistently if not quickly and unlike many of the other Halloween events like this around L.A., guests aren’t bogged down and angry. Everyone in my slotted time seemed to be enjoying themselves.

Overall, I don’t know that I would go again this year but possibly next year. The tickets drop down to $22 at the beginning of the season, but even that is a bit high for 30 minutes of Jack-o-Lanterns to walk past. If you have never been, go at least once to see it. The artistry on these pumpkins really is amazing and to see so many together is quite spectacular. I give this event 3 out of 5 stars.

IMG_1436 IMG_1480 IMG_1504 IMG_1521 IMG_1525 IMG_1555 IMG_1560