Karie Comstock won first place in the first ever underwater pumpkin carving contest in the CNMI, organized by Green Flash Dive Inc. last Saturday in the waters off Lau Lau Beach in time for today’s Halloween.
Comstock, who is a lawyer with the Office of the Public Defender and is an expert scuba diver, took the inaugural plum with her entry of a gourd that was carved into a whale-like figure.
She said she has always wanted to join an underwater pumpkin carving contest and the contest hosted by Green Flash Dive was her first chance.
“…It was very exciting. It was fun and a lot more difficult when you are underwater and trying to hold the pumpkin to cut little parts out and stick everything together. Glad I joined,” she said.
Carey Hong Blalock of Axe Murderer Tours Inc. won second place with the classic jack-o-lantern carving with creepy eyes and smile, while scuba diver Madge Gai bagged third place with her “Rasta man” pumpkin entry, complete with seaweeds for dreadlocks.
“This activity is perfect to celebrate Halloween with divers who love to dive and do a unique activity underwater. …We want to build local interest by creating fun activities that also promote camaraderie and beautiful dive sites on our island,” said scuba instructor and Green Flash Dive owner Joey McDoulett.
“The divers went down 30 feet and they had to bring their own pumpkins. The pumpkins had to be prepped and cleaned before going down and they cannot draw on the pumpkin before they can go underwater as they have to do their artistic work in the water,” McDoulett added.
The criteria for judging included creativity, uniqueness, and must follow the underwater/Halloween theme. Besides the whale-like gourd and the “Rasta man” entry, there was also a diver pumpkin with a scuba regulator on.
With the success of this year’s contest, McDoulett said a repeat next year is not a farfetched idea. “This is how we would like to give back to the community because we feel that it’s important for Saipan’s environment that the community is invested in keeping our islands beautiful and promoting its uniqueness.”
Green Flash Dive, a pioneer in “hydrotastic test” equipment and scuba safety services in the CNMI, is located in Chinatown and is open from Monday to Sunday from 7am to 7pm. For more information, call (670) 287-3243 or look up “Green Flash Dive Services” on Facebook and Instragram. Its website is greenflashdive.com.