‘Smash Hammer’ helps raise awareness of composting, sustainable solutions

One of the many ways to compost your used jack-o-lantern at Pumpkin Smash.

The Pumpkin Smash is a free, family-friendly event that brings awareness to composting and other community minded sustainability solutions in a fun and engaging setting. The 6th Annual Pumpkin Smash, which takes place Nov. 1 at Idaho Springs’ Shelly/Quinn Ballfield Complex, will bring Clear Creek County residents together to celebrate the fun of composting. Each year the event has grown bigger and better and is now one of the most anticipated community engagement events in the region.

Every year after Halloween there is a spike in the waste stream caused by discarded Jack-O-Lanterns. By gathering in a fun, engaging environment residents show their support for the power of creative solutions and each other.

Scraps-to-Soil, a Clear Creek County-based composting club, is eagerly looking forward to a record turnout for this year’s event that features the return of the well-loved “Smash Hammer,” among other games, contests and activities. There will be music as well.

Since 2009, the first weekend after Halloween, people of all ages bring their jack-o’-lanterns to the event to smash and compost. Children in Clear Creek County anticipate the event and begin “whooping and hollering” at the mention of it. The group channels that enthusiasm and uses it as an opportunity to educate.

Organizers hope attendees learn they can solve local problems, like poor soil, with local resources. Smashing activities and educational programming will address numerous sustainability issues in a format exciting for younger attendees.

Funds raised by the event will sustain and further community and home composting programs, community gardens and other educational efforts.

Visit or find them on Facebook for more information.

Originally published in the October 2014 edition of the MMAC Monthly

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