Why You Should Buy a Pumpkin or Mum Today in Downtown Geneva

The Pumpkins for a Cure started modestly and has grown to be a great source of hope in the fight against early childhood diseases.

If you are looking for mums or a pumpkin to celebrate the Halloween season, today is the day for you to visit downtown Geneva and find exactly what you're looking for—and maybe a little more.

That's because you'll have a chance to also help a great cause, the Zellmer Childhood Disease Foundation, which will donate proceeds from this year's festival to two research grants: one at the University of Chicago Kovler Diabetes Center and another to the University of Illinois Chicago Pediatric Brain Disorders Clinic. 

The 2012 festival features a pumpkin patch and mum garden, jack-o-lanterns and specialty pumpkins such as Cinderella’s, Lunch Lady’s, Fairy Tales, White pumpkins and a pumpkin that has never been grown in Illinois before :a pink pumpkin!

In the mum garden, Pumpkins for a Cure has added a variety of fall plants to help complete your fall garden. In addition to late blooming, hearty mums are cabbages, kale and a few surprises.

The festival has a compelling local history and is rooted firmly in a desire to help others.

Mary Agnes and Paul Zellmer’s son, Jim, was 6 years old in the fall of 2004 when he was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes. When Paul came home from the pharmacy with a bag full of insulin and supplies, Jim panicked and said, “How long will I have to take shots?” His dad told him, “For the rest of your life.” The small boy’s eyes filled with tears and he said, “Mommy, fix this.” The next fall, Pumpkins for a Cure was born.

What started as a small family operation selling pumpkins from Jim’s grandparents’ farm out of the Zellmer front yard, has grown to an annual weekend attraction drawing thousands of people from all over the Chicago area.

In its first year, Pumpkins for a Cure (PFAC) raised $6,000. Today, thanks to volunteers, sponsors and passionate supporters, volunteers sell 12 tons of pumpkins each year and raise more than $100,000 per year.

Today is your chance to help.


Geneva Patch is a media sponsor of Pumpkins for a Cure.


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