Sunday, October 31, 2010

City Views, Country Dreams

Happy Halloween from New York.

This is a beautiful afternoon, but oh, so very windy! It will be very chilly for folks who might want to attend the annual free form Halloween Parade up Sixth Avenue later on this evening. I decided to venture out earlier, in the sporadic warmth of the sun, to take a few photographs.

We will start with a splendid array of pumpkins at the farmers market. Some might yet turn into jack o' lanterns before nightfall.

Leaving those pumpkins, I strolled over to a brownstone-filled neighborhood street that goes all out every year with its decorations. Around twilight today, the street will be closed to vehicular traffic and will become a magical place for little ghosts and goblins. There will be a street party. I imagine that the shrieking and laughing will be quite loud.

Here are some of the decorations adorning the steps and entrance ways to buildings on this block. The small round pumpkins in the following photo will be lit after dark.

These two Dracula characters are competing to see who is scariest.

This fellow gets my vote. (Ahh, our election day will be this Tuesday.)

I am not sure if this display will or will not actually spook children climbing these steps in search of candy.

Brownstone houses usually have a entryway to the "garden" level of the house, and this entrance way is located under the main front staircase that leads to the "parlor" floor. This little fellow must be busy with his garden at this time of year.

The following photo shows a bit of a mish mash (or is it a Monster Mash) attached to the wrought iron gating over the garden level window. Sometimes, less might be more in the frightening stakes.

One house along the street was decorated tastefully with seasonal plants. These stairs serve as a bit of a palate refresher between the spooky bits.

I began this Halloween post with some pumpkins and will close with another sort of pumpkin. I could not resist taking a picture of this adorable little girl and her mom, whose long shadows echo some of the shapes of the trees along this walkway just behind the Museum of Natural History.
I hope that your Halloween will be filled with many treats.


  1. Frances, I am always amazed by the trouble American people go to with seasonal decorations. You wouldnt see anything like that in France...or in UK either. They are obviously very imaginative, and maybe a bit scary too!

  2. Excellent post, Frances
    in the spirit of the season
    loved all the photos.
    Greetings from Florence!

  3. I love the pumpkins, flowers and leaves that people use. I'm not so fond of the gruesome decorations that one sees - too spooky for little ones. The little walking pumpkin is too cute!

  4. Thank you, Frances, for this wonderful tour along your Halloween sights! I love the one place decorated with seasonal plants and unusual pumpkins best, but love the spirit of fun and community behind all these decorations. The imagine with the little two-legged pumpkin is gorgeous!

    A safe and happy Halloween, Francis,

  5. iP.S.:
    Imagine, four little Halloween revelers rung my door bell! They were pleased as Punch when I opened the door. I had turned off the light and only a small tea light in a storm glass was lit, the little ones enjoyed selecting chocolates from my basket.

  6. I remembered your Halloween post from last year with the wonderful photos and I couldn't wait for this year's post. Again, amazing and as always, you make me want to move to New York.
    Great post and Happy Halloween to you! :)

  7. we do not celebrate Halloween here but I love all pumkin decorations and the last picuture is so cute

  8. What a wonderful collection of seasonal pictures, along with you delightful commentary!

  9. I'm not normally a fan of Hallowe'en but your pictures looked fun!


  10. I love your pumpkin bookends to this post and very much enjoyed my view of the street festivities. Thank you for including the shot of that beautifully composed arrangement of planting and pumpkins too, as you point out, it makes a pleasant interlude amongs the all-out spooky bits!

  11. Slowly we in the UK are becoming more Halloween conscious. I want to call someone or something 'Ween' as in 'Hallo Ween!' Just as you say 'Hallo Vera' when you see a spiky plant on the windowsill. Where do the insides of all the pumpkins go? It's one of life's great mysteries. Just think of the pumpkin pies you could make.

  12. Lovely images - it's so nice to see people being imaginative with their decorations and not relying only on store-bought, gruesome plastic. Thanks for the neighbourhood tour!

  13. Hallowe'en looks to be great fun in New York Frances, thanks for the tour round. I love the wee pumpkin girl!

  14. what a lovely post! love the pics!
    i just bumped into your blog! so interesting!


  15. I love the way the Americans celebrate everything which such gusto!! Thank you Francis!!

  16. Halloween is not something I ever experienced as a child and there was little of it anywhere else I've lived.
    I'd be happy to have children knock on my door for treats, but we live so far off the road, none ever find their way to us.

  17. Ah, a city full of charm and inspiration.

  18. It seems to me that as each year passes we in England are taking Halloween more seriously. The shops have been full of merchandise, children dressed in costumes and pumpkins carved and sometimes eaten. I think it will be some time before our festivities rival yours but we are certainly embracing this tradition more and more. When I was little it used to be bonfire night that got all the attention.

  19. Hi Frances,
    How much fun to see your walk around New York at this time of year. Wonderful decorations and costumes! It is amazing what is created for Halloween. Loved the little girl all dressed up as a pumpkin!
    All the best.
    Ingrid x