For most kids, Halloween is pretty much the best day of the year. Between the costumes, the candy, and the fun with friends, what’s not to love? But for kids with serious food allergies, Halloween can feel like yet another fun thing they miss out on. That’s where the Teal Pumpkin Project comes in. Started in 2012 by a mom of a child with food allergies, the concept is simple. You put out a teal pumpkin to alert passerby that you have non-food items for trick-or-treaters. “Some people really enjoying painting and decorating their pumpkins with teal and other folks just buy one at a store or online,” says Lisa Gable, CEO of the FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) organization, which took the Teal Pumpkin Project national in 2014. She encourages people to sign up on their online map to help people find participating homes.
Says Gable: “Halloween is that one holiday that all children in America look forward to but it comes with risk for life threatening food allergies. The Teal Pumpkin Project allows them to be a full participant, without calling attention to the fact that they have this disease.” FARE has partnered with retailers like Walmart, Target and Amazon, and you’ll find a variety of products, including teal pumpkin décor and non-food Halloween treats, to make joining in easier than ever.
Looking for ideas? Here are a few we love. Just be sure to put them in a separate bowl from the food treats!