Carving out the perfect harvest season on Instagram

Skylar Oh, Contributor

With Halloween’s passing and the harvest season right around the corner, it is never too late to explore the spooky attractions in and around New York City, including the Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze. Last year, this can’t-miss event ran for 28 sold-out nights and gathered over 120,000 spectators.

Otherwise known as “the Pumpkin Blaze” or “the Blaze,” the Great Jack O’Lantern Blaze is an annual event held in several different locations, the closest to Manhattan being at the Old Bethpage Village Restoration in Long Island. When this attraction first opened in 2005, it was largely a local celebration. However, in the years since, the Pumpkin Blaze has become increasingly popular bringing over 160,000 spectators to see the towering light sculptures assembled from 7,000 hand-carved pumpkins.

Depending on your pace and where you stop for photos, the 45 to 90-minute walking tour consists of gigantic light sculptures and landscapes, as well as several re-created monuments, including the Statue of Liberty, pumpkin planetarium and the “Pumpkin Zee Bridge” (the pumpkin-fied version of the Tappan Zee Bridge). Along with these annual staples, every year they come out with several new designs, including the newly constructed New York cityscape and the dinosaur skeleton pop-ups. 

Until Nov. 6, the Blaze will run daily with tickets available online. Depending on the admission time and date, tickets start at $24. By the season’s end, all proceeds made from the Blaze will be donated to support Historic Hudson Valley, a non-profit cultural and educational organization, to aid its numerous educational programs offered to all community members and visitors from around the world. 

To get to the location in Long Island, hop on the Long Island Rail Road’s Port Jefferson or Ronkonkoma lines and get off at the Hicksville station. If you’re dying to go, but Nov. 6 has passed, the Hudson Valley location is open until Nov. 20. On this adventure, you can take the Metro-North Hudson Line from Grand Central Terminal and then transfer to the train heading to Croton-Harmon station. Once you reach the Van Cortlandt Manor, the Blaze is just a ten-minute walk away.