Giant pumpkin extravaganza, horror movies and poutine

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Giant pumpkin extravaganza, horror movies and poutine

By Scott Pukos

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I come from a pumpkin family. While that could mean we're all crazy about pumpkin pie, or we chug spice lattes with pumpkin-loving vigor, or we just love tunes from the Smashing Pumpkins, it actually means something completely different (though most of that other stuff is true too). Because when I say we're a pumpkin family, I mean we're a GIANT pumpkin family.

The biggest pumpkin my dad has grown was well over 1,200 pounds. In fact, he's grown many pumpkins over 1,000 pounds and many big enough to cause people to stop, stare and smile. We've carved faces in them, displayed them on Halloween, and even hollowed them out to form a goofy orange regatta. His inspiration was his dad - my grandfather - who pioneered the Pukos giant pumpkin trend with giant pumpkins that were slightly less giant (200 pounds or so).

Aside from competing in dozens of weigh-offs and becoming a respected member of the giant pumpkin growing community (this is actually a very popular, and time-consuming, hobby), my dad also starred in a charming PBS documentary called Lords of the Gourd. It was part of director Mark Lewis' Pursuit of Excellence series, and aired on WXXI in 2007. And now, in this season of pumpkins, we're bringing this documentary to The Little. Our FREE screening is at 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 24 and we'll have some pumpkin treats in the café that day too! I'll give a short intro for the film, and I even hear the Lord of the Gourd himself will be in attendance.

Halloween fun

With Halloween approaching, we have some fun things coming up. Our final two October Mondo films (An American Werewolf in London Oct. 23 and Fright Night Oct. 30) both will feature beer from Roc Brewing Co., poutine from Le Petit Poutine, plus other spooky, scary, fun things! I firmly believe that beer + movies + poutine, is the perfect night. Also, I've recently encountered people who have never tired the delicious amalgamation of fries, gravy and cheese curds that is poutine! If you fall in that category, I very highly recommend giving Le Petit Poutine a try. It will be a delicious decision. I promise.

This MONDO October series has been a blast, and that's largely in part to a few people, including Little projectionist Chris Hogan-Roy and the awesome folks at Fright-Rags. I recorded episode four of the Little podcast Movies and a Microphone this week, and Ben Scrivens from Fright-Rags was my guest. We had a great conversation about the MONDO movies, the scariest moments of our lives, and the worst Halloween candy. Look for that later this week!

In true, and spooky Halloween spirit, we're releasing a film this week that has been dubbed "nightmare fuel" by critics (well, by at least one critic who is highlighted in the trailer). Goodnight Mommy opens Friday (more details below), and I confirm that the trailer is terrifying in the best way possible. This is also a movie that many people asked me about, so I'm especially excited for this one (of course, we have a new Bill Murray movie opening too which I'm also quite pumped for).

Birthday recap

Finally, thanks to everyone who came out on our birthday, Oct. 17. I handed out cake most of the afternoon, and everyone was so friendly and enthusiastic about movies! It was a delight, and I was very happy to meet many of you. Remember, Member Movie Night is Nov. 2, so we'll have more fun that evening (and free movies!). You can easily become a member, by visiting this link.