October 23, 2013
Jackson County officials are vying to carve the perfect pumpkin this year, all to benefit charity.
Jackson County Executive Mike Sanders and nine Jackson County mayors are testing their pumpkin carving skills for the Pumpkin Playoffs, an annual pumpkin carving contest.
Their jack-o-lanterns will be on display this week in the first floor lobby of the Jackson County Historic Truman Courthouse, Independence Square in Independence, Mo. Public voting will begin at noon Tuesday and continue through noon on Saturday, Oct. 26 at the courthouse.
A ballot box will be located on the first-floor lobby and citizens can cast their “votes” by checking their favorite entry on donation envelopes and dropping the envelopes, with their monetary donations, into the locked ballot box.
Each pumpkin symbolizes the community that each elected official serves, and the winning entry will be the one with the most funds collected. All donations will stay with the charity they were intended to be given to.
“This is most definitely a friendly competition,” Sanders said. “The mayors and I each get to partake in a Halloween tradition that dates back to the mid-1800s, while at the same time raising money for a charity that makes a real difference in our area. I’m grateful so many of the mayors have chosen to participate.”
The Pumpkin Playoffs participants and their charities are:
•Jackson County Executive Mike Sanders – Children’s Center for the Visually Impaired
•Kansas City Mayor Sly James – Turn the Page KC
•Blue Springs Mayor Carson Ross – Community Services League of Blue Springs
•Grain Valley Mayor Mike Todd – Grain Valley Holiday Senior Baskets
•Grandview Mayor Steve Dennis – Grandview Assistance Program
•Independence Mayor Don Reimal – Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Kansas City (Independence Unit)
•Lee’s Summit Mayor Randy Rhoads – One Good Meal Oak Grove
•Mayor Mark Fulks – Community Services League of Oak Grove
•Raytown Mayor David Bower – Raytown Three Trails Kiwanis
•Sugar Creek Mayor Matt Mallinson – Sugar Creek Citizens Civic Relief Commission