Presenter Information

Cassandra Cloutier

Mentor

Rosemary Gianno

Location

David F. Putnam Science Center - 127

Abstract

The riots associated with the Keene Pumpkin Festival of 2014 exposed many divisions between the Keene, NH residents. This paper presents the results of ethnographic research conducted to uncover socially constructed realities embedded in responses to the 2014 Pumpkin Fest riots. This ethnographic inquiry included interviews, participant-observation, analysis of news articles, and commentary. During the family-friendly community event, participants were unaware of an extremely different type of celebration of Pumpkin Fest occurring on adjacent streets. Between the Pumpkin Fest footprint and the Keene State campus, chaotic parties escalated into riotous behaviors that carried on throughout the night, surrounded by police. While some students contributed to the clean up the next day, a buzz of opinions concerning the possible cause(s) began to flare. In the following weeks, different socially constructed narratives, roughly aligned with different interest groups, emerged.

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Apr 11th, 3:05 PM Apr 11th, 4:05 PM

Two Communities, One Town: The Divided Culture Of Pumpkin Fest 2014

David F. Putnam Science Center - 127

The riots associated with the Keene Pumpkin Festival of 2014 exposed many divisions between the Keene, NH residents. This paper presents the results of ethnographic research conducted to uncover socially constructed realities embedded in responses to the 2014 Pumpkin Fest riots. This ethnographic inquiry included interviews, participant-observation, analysis of news articles, and commentary. During the family-friendly community event, participants were unaware of an extremely different type of celebration of Pumpkin Fest occurring on adjacent streets. Between the Pumpkin Fest footprint and the Keene State campus, chaotic parties escalated into riotous behaviors that carried on throughout the night, surrounded by police. While some students contributed to the clean up the next day, a buzz of opinions concerning the possible cause(s) began to flare. In the following weeks, different socially constructed narratives, roughly aligned with different interest groups, emerged.