METAIRIE La. (WGNO) — Lakeside Mall is in the Halloween spirit big time. Its pumpkin decorating contest, running from Oct. 11 to Oct. 27, is a way for area high schools to win some big money. WGNO’s Kenny Lopez shows us these perfectly painted pumpkins.

This pumpkin patch at Lakeside Shopping Center isn’t your average pumpkin patch. All these pumpkins on display are hand painted.

“We invite area schools to decorate artificial pumpkins at the beginning of September,” Interim Marketing Director at Lakeside Shopping Center Shelly Lauman said.

It is a competition for several local high schools like Mt. Carmel Academy, Archbishop Rummel High School and John Curtis, to name a few. The schools’ art departments paint the decorative pumpkins.

“I am just amazed with the creativity and their artistic ability,” Lauman said.

Lakeside is pumping up the stakes with prizes.

“There are eight schools participating, and they are competing for cash prizes: $1,200 for first prize, $800 for second prize and $400 for third prize,” she said.

Mall-goers can help out by voting. If you visit the mall, all you have to do is scan the QR code at the pumpkin patch and pick your favorite pumpkin.

McKenzie Hawks and her girls picked their favorite. “They really like the Princess and the Frog ones.”

While these pumpkins aren’t for picking to take home, just maybe seeing these will bring out your inner pumpkin Picasso.

The winners will be announced on Sunday, Oct. 29, from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Lakeside Mall-o-Ween event.

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