Scare up smiles!
Carving a pumpkin certainly gets you in the Halloween spirit…until you see your hard work go to waste when it starts to sag a few days later. The secret to keeping your jack intact? “Cut a hole in the bottom of the pumpkin instead of the top,” reveals Michael Natiello, who oversees the carving of 10,000 gourds a year as creative director for The Great Jack O’ Lantern Blaze in Sleepy Hollow, New York. Pumpkins cut from the top tend to cave in on themselves, while cutting a hole in the base (and discarding it) keeps the gourd’s walls stable. Also smart: Rub a dab of petroleum jelly on cut areas. This creates a seal on the exposed flesh, warding off rot.