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Nocturnal party, green pumpkins at GEHC

The Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center is hosting a “green” pumpkin carving contest as a part of its annual Creatures of the Night Festival. The pumpkins are displayed during the festival on Oct. 18. (Special Photo)

The Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center is hosting a “green” pumpkin carving contest as a part of its annual Creatures of the Night Festival. The pumpkins are displayed during the festival on Oct. 18. (Special Photo)

BUFORD — At night, the woods come to life with nocturnal creatures.

To celebrate the critters who crawl after dark, the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center is hosting its annual Creatures of the Night Festival on Oct. 18.

From 6 to 9 p.m., guests have a chance to learn about nocturnal animals and their adaptations to the darkness. Attendees will see live animals, like an owl and opossum.

The event also features an indoor scavenger hunt, crafts, owl pellet dissections, Discovery Dome shows, a night sky presentation, a full moon tram ride and a display of nature themed carved pumpkins.

Throughout the evening, the GEHC offers night hikes for both younger and older visitors where participants will use all of their senses.

Before people can browse through the pumpkin display, people need to enter their ghoulish “green” gourds. The center is hosting a pumpkin carving contest with a “green” or nature theme. Entries for the contest must be delivered to the GEHC before the event on Oct. 18.

“We are encouraging guests to use their imagination to come up with a green or nature themed carving for their jack-o-lanterns,” said Jason West, director of programming. “Their creations will be displayed and judged by staff and visitors at the enchanted pumpkin display during the Creatures of the Night Festival.”

Program fees for the Creatures of the Night Festival are $5 for ages 13 and up and $3 for ages 3 to 12. Children 2 and under and GEHC members are free. Program fees can be paid at the door or you can pay online at www.gwinnettEHC.org.