World-Renowned Artist Carves at 3rd Annual Carefree Enchanted Pumpkin Garden October 20-29

Town of Carefree Hosts Master Sculptor Ray Villafane, Live Carving Demonstrations and Magical Halloween Festivities

The Halloween spirit will invade the Town of Carefree for its third year in the form of whimsical pumpkin carvings from master sculptor Ray Villafane and the Villafane Studios team. The Enchanted Pumpkin Garden will be open to the public and woven throughout the four-acre, publicly registered, Carefree Desert Gardens. This free admission, one-of-a-kind fall festival celebrates incredible artistry and enchantment of the Halloween season for all ages, open October 20-29, 2017, 10 a.m. - 9 p.m., 101 Easy Street, Carefree, Arizona.

Voted “Best in the Valley” by “Phoenix Magazine” in 2015 and 2016, visitors are invited back to stroll and experience the many new mischievous pumpkin characters, artfully imagined and frolicking in their magical Carefree garden home. In addition to the playful pumpkins, Ray and his team will carve ten 3D pumpkin faces preserved and displayed in tanks that resemble Saguaro cacti, sculpted and immersed in a pickling solution for preservation and lit by LED light. One of the most popular photo opportunities is the 400-lb. pumpkin on display for visitors to take selfies and family photos. It will be carved by Villafane himself the weekend before Halloween. Villafane’s team of four carvers will create new carvings daily throughout the garden and welcome kids to carve with them up-close and personal.Other special highlights include two special family instructional carving nights with Ray Villafane and the YMCA on October 25 and 26, reservations recommended. There is anticipation of a new costume contest for families and kids along with an adult spook-tacular costume contest scheduled on October 28. Other popular activities include the “Adopt a Pumpkin” patch, pumpkin pie eating competition, corn maze, face painting, arts and crafts, a new harvest market and a local craft beer garden featuring Four Peaks along with culinary food trucks and autumnal treats. On Halloween, the Town will work in conjunction with local boutique Bella Donna and Cane, to coordinate a “Trunk or Treat” event along Carefree’s Easy street at 5 p.m. in the downtown area to promote a safe environment for children to trick or treat.

About Ray Villafane

Based in Arizona, with a workshop and gallery, Ray Villafane is an internationally acclaimed American sculptor who has traveled throughout the globe fashioning exceptional figures and scenes out of pumpkins, sand, and snow. Villafane has been called, “The Michelangelo of pumpkin carving,” by Martha Stewart, carved for the President at the White House, and has appeared on numerous national TV programs as well as holding two World Guinness Book of Records. He’s also known for his Food Network’s Pumpkin Challenges, which he won in 2008, 2009 and 2010.

About the Town of Carefree

Carefree is a scenic community of over 3,700 residents nestled in the Sonoran Desert Foothills. Incorporated in 1984, Carefree is regarded as one of the most inspiring and livable places in Arizona and centers its culture on desert lifestyle, architecture, culinary arts, health, wellness and community involvement. For more information or call (480) 488-3686.