With No Keene City Permit, 2015 Pumpkin Festival Will Be Hosted In Laconia

Apr 24, 2015

The New Hampshire city of Laconia will host this year's annual Pumpkin Festival after its long-time host city declined to issue a permit following violence near last year's event.

At the announcement in Laconia's historic train station Friday afternoon, Mayor Ed Engler said its experience hosting an annual motorcycle festival gives officials a good handle on security and public safety.

He says there are no "huge concerns" about security in the city of about 16,000.

Held in Keene since 1991, the pumpkin festival tries each year to set a record for the number of carved and lighted pumpkins.

Last year's event turned violent, with alcohol-fueled parties nearby leading to injuries, property damage and more than 100 arrests. The Keene City Council rejected a permit for 2015.