Pumpkins in a pool — Richmond celebrates the fall with scarecrows and swimming
on October 27, 2023
Celebrate the arrival of fall at the Richmond Plunge Saturday, when a sea of floating pumpkins will be taking over the swim lanes.
“Some people can go to a pumpkin patch, and go through a corn maze, and go on a hay ride.
And sure, that’s one way to make that memorable,” said Paula Cooper-Tipton, the aquatics recreation program coordinator. “But another memorable way is to go jump in the water and swim with your pumpkin.”
In its 12-year history, this is the first time that advanced registration is required. Cooper-Tipton said this is because last year’s event was so popular that some participants waited in long lines to enter. This year, she’s hoping to avoid that, wanting people to get in as quickly as possible.
It is also the first time that two, hour-long sessions are offered. The first session is scheduled to begin at 1:15 p.m. and the second at 2:30 p.m. Interested participants can choose which session they’d like to attend at registration.
Cooper-Tipton and the staff have been busy decorating and preparing for the event. They plan to have scarecrows, hay bales, and other festive fall decor at the historic swimming pool.
They’ll pick up a truckload of over 100 pumpkins then pressure wash each one before throwing them in the pool Saturday morning.
“It’s exciting and something new,” said lifeguard Gem Ilene Smith, who will be working the event for the first time. “I’ve never seen the Plunge all decorated and with pumpkins in the water.”
Smith said with a crowd of kids and floating pumpkins in the water, staff and lifeguards will be extra cautious.
“Ultimately, our goal is to have fun, but also keep everybody safe,” Cooper-Tipton added.
Children age 8 and under require an adult in the water. Children age 9 and above require a paying adult to supervise. Entry fees for Richmond residents are $10 per child and $7 per adult. Entry fees for non-residents are $12.50 per child and $8.75 per adult. Child admission includes a pumpkin. Non-swimming adults accompanying a child must pay an entry fee of $2.50.
Registration and other information is on the Richmond Plunge web page.
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