They show up after the last trick-or-treaters have returned home to count their booty, and they last until December—or until they rot.
Port Albernians have a long-standing tradition of bringing their pumpkin jack o’ lanterns down to Cathedral Grove and at the top of the Highway 4 “Hump”—Alberni Summit—after Halloween so others may enjoy them.
Some leave the candles inside the pumpkins so they may be lit at night, offering a different view for drivers heading through the Grove.
Around the end of November, highways or parks crews—Cathedral Grove is a provincial park—traditionally clean up the pumpkin carcasses from the Grove. Some, though, escape the cleanup and can be seen throughout the winter months on the side of the highway.
Port Alberni isn’t the only city on Vancouver Island with this tradition: Nanaimo residents have long visited the ‘pumpkin row’ that appears along the Shady Mile on Jingle Pot Road every October. In 2012, Parksville’s Resort Drive community got together and organized Pumpkins on the Drive, which this year ran from Oct. 27–Nov. 1—hundreds of lit pumpkins in front of all the beachfront resorts.