If you need a pumpkin for the Halloween and harvest seasons, you can buy a pumpkin and help a good cause at the same time.
The annual Pumpkin Patch sale is being held at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church at 2435 West Andrew Johnson Hwy, next to Sonic Drive-In from now until Tuesday, Oct. 30 or until the pumpkins sell out, whichever comes first.
Hours are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday-Saturday and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays. The pumpkins come from Holmes Farms in Grainger County.
After the church pays for the pumpkins, remaining profits will go to Community Effort Against Spouse Abuse Violence and Sexual Assault, Inc. C.E.A.S.E., a nonprofit organization, supports victims of domestic violence and sexual assault. The agency provides services to Hamblen, Claiborne, Grainger, Hancock, Hawkins and Union counties
This Saturday, there will be two food trucks at the church, Grill Billy’s Smoked BBQ and Jack’d Up Bagels, to sell their wares.
“We’ve never had food trucks before,” Nancy McLoughlin said. “They’re just going to come in, park and sell.”
There will also be a baked goods for sale on Saturday.
“I know that the pumpkin sale has been going on for more than 10 years,” McLoughlin said. “We purchase the pumpkins and after we get enough money to pay for them, then whatever is left will go to a nonprofit. This year it’s going to C.E.A.S.E., which is a great, great thing.”
Pumpkins range in price from $5 to $30, according to McLoughlin.
“We’ve got baby pumpkins, big pumpkins, gourds, squash, and all types of pumpkins.”
This past Saturday, children from Kingswood School and Kohl’s Kids helped to unload the pumpkins at the church.
Kayla Oakes of C.E.A.S.E. is grateful for the community support.
“It takes a lot to run the shelters,” Oakes said. “We have two shelters, one in Morristown and another in Tazewell with a total of 26 beds. We have our Safe at Home program, advocacy programs in the six counties that we serve.
“We are full most all of the time and that’s been the case since I’ve been there,” Oakes said. “Our Tazewell shelter has really seen an increase in how many clients we have. It could also be due to the fact that we have more staff, so we’re more of a presence there.”
Oakes said that Tennessee is fourth in the nation in domestic violence.
“We stay pretty busy,” she said. “We’re trying to be more of a presence in the counties that we serve. We have two advocates in each of the offices of the counties we serve. We’ve really seen it grow.”