Pumpkin-slashing zombies crowd Marvin Hall

LAWRENCE — Marvin Hall was recently host to 25 knife-wielding zombies, just in time for Halloween.

Fortunately, work by students from the School of Architecture, Design and Planning did not appear for the purpose of doing evil. 

They were instead called forth from their tombs by the supernatural, irresistible force of the first annual American Institute of Architecture Students’ pumpkin carving contest.  

The Oct. 18 Cucurbita hack-fest was organized by Dandre Curtis, Mesa, Ariz., and AIAS president Patrick Bayer, Overland Park. Both harvested the pumpkins and other materials from local merchants.

“It was rather frightful for the judges,” said Curtis. “But in the end they managed to choose winners based on design, character and complexity.”

Awarding the first three places were judges Sheila Cahnman, of the architecture firm HOK, Chicago; Michael Ufer, HKS Architecture, Dallas, and Kent Spreckelmeyer, professor of architecture.

The first-place winner was Jonathan Wilde, Olathe, and the second prize went to William Weiner, Plano, Tex. Third place was awarded to Eric Winkler, Omaha.

The students used a “Noise Richter Scale” to choose the honorable mention, which went to Elisa Rombold, Junction City.

The winners received gift cards and bags that included candy, architecture tools, T-shirts, Jayhawk pins, and more.

Donations came from Dillons, Jimmy Johns, Ace Hardware, Hy-Vee and Wal-Mart.