In an effort to bring more awareness to northern businesses in Waxahachie, a destination was created for the community. In that effort was a chance to give back.

Aspen Community Development developed The Grove located on North Highway 77 and wanted to give locals another reason to enjoy its amenities. After company president Scott Pendery and vice president Blain Vinson brainstormed what was missing this holiday season, the vision for The Pumpkin Hach was born.

After three weeks of trying to find pumpkins, Aspen was introduced to local third-generation farmer Lee Calvert, who transported pumpkins from west Texas and sold the product. Aspen granted Calvert the land where nearly 2,000 pumpkins were sold and also coordinated events like pettings zoos and a movie night also helped create memories.

While providing a destination for families, it was important for Aspen to incorporate one of its company values, “helping others.”

With The Pumpkin Hach being agriculture-centered, the Aspen team saw it fitting to benefit the Waxahachie High School FFA.

Concluding the month of October, the Aspen Community Development team and Calvert delivered a check of $1,250 to benefit the Waxahachie FFA.

“It was awesome,” said Waxahachie agriculture teacher Jake Mullican about The Pumpkin Hach, where, on weekends while the pumpkin patch was open, the FFA students, advisors and boosters were present, raffling off tickets for items created by the students and assisting with the movie night.

“Our students were able to engage with different members of the community, talk about the program and we even had some animals out there that the parents and kids were asking about,” Mullican said. “To be able to have the kids advocate about the different opportunities that are offered through FFA, it’s a great cause and was happy to be part of it.”

Hands-on learning sets FFA and agriculture learning apart from other departments and programs at WHS, which also means it can be costly to educate students. Outside donations provide more impactful experiences for more students.  

“We do have budgets obviously, a lot of times, depending on the year you get stretched out pretty thin sometimes,” Mullican said. “So, any outside donations go a long way to helping not just one or two kids, but 300 kids from here that will be able to use those types of funds to further their learning opportunities.”

Mullican expressed his thankfulness to Aspen Community Development and for the opportunity to get involved with The Pumpkin Hatch.

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