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A Big Pumpkin Brings Big Smiles

by April Leavenworth / Boston Bruins
Don Sweeney reads, "It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown."
Boston, MA -- The children of Bright Horizons day care center on Cambridge Street received a special Halloween treat when Bruins Director of Hockey Operations and Player Development, Don Sweeney, read aloud to them sitting next to a 766 lb pumpkin.

The group of about fifteen children aged three-to-five gathered in front of the Liberty Hotel in Boston between 11:00 a.m. and noon this morning to hear Sweeney read, appropriately, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and The Big Pumpkin.

“They were very excited about the pumpkin,” said Bright Horizons teacher Chloe Manigo. “They didn’t know [pumpkins] could grow so big.

"We have little pumpkins in the classroom so when they saw this they were really amazed.”

The pumpkin is owned by George Caron of Wilmington, MA, who was happy to let the Bruins bring it to Boston for the day. He also grew pumpkins this season weighing in at 688 lbs and 535 lbs in a small patch in his backyard.

Mr. Caron even supplied pumpkin seeds for all the children in hopes that they could grow pumpkins just as large.

After the readings, the children were able to pose for pictures with the giant pumpkin, Blades, and Sweeney, who enjoyed the morning just as much as the children.

“Usually I do the great pumpkin voice in the confines of my own home with my two boys,” Sweeney said with a laugh. “So it was nice to be here today. This is probably the first time they understand [Halloween].”

During the reading the children were served hot chocolate, cider and doughnuts courtesy of the Liberty Hotel, who were also unveiling a new kid’s menu at one of their restaurants, Clink.

The children of Bright Horizons left with big smiles and full stomachs, as well as a goody bag of Bruins memorabilia such as a poster and hockey puck.

“They were engaged and they had fun,” said Manigo. “It was good to do this with the Bruins.”  
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