Pat O’Brien, one of my students, showcased his beautiful patriotic watermelon carvings at the “Red, White and You” 4th of July celebration near Fayetteville, North Carolina.
You might remember Pat from blog post I published earlier about Pat’s journey from a beginner carver to a culinary competition medalist. Now you can see what he carved for the Destination America r 4th of July event that was mentioned in the blog post.
Hosted by Destination America, the Independence Day festival drew a crowd of several thousand people. Pat’s patriotic watermelon carvings were on display in the VIP tent, which was catered by Pitmaster’s BBQ and Fatback’s BBQ and Rib Shack (a former winner on the show BBQ Pitmasters) and Huske hardware (a local restaurant/brewery).
Pat’s watermelon towers were a hit! Pat reported that the reactions were awesome with people crowded around the displays throughout the event snapping photos with their phones.
Pat received great feedback at the event. Pat wrote to me,
The best was a little girl who was riding on her father’s shoulders coming into the tent. Once she cleared the entrance, she exclaimed, ‘Watermelons!!!’ She was so excited. I can honestly say that kind of reaction from a little kid is the biggest reason I love carving.”
Pat carve 15 melons for the event.
I made two melon towers, one was all the sponsors of the event (Destination America, Pitmasters BBQ, Fatback’s BBQ and Rib Shack, and the city of Fayetteville), the other tower was all patriotic melons.” – Pat O’Brien
Close-ups of Pat’s Patriotic Watermelon Carvings
Since Pat works during the day, he devoted his after-work hours to creating these patriotic watermelon carvings. He carved a total of 15 melons over the course of a week for the displays.Talk about dedication!
The patriotic tower was a lot of fun to do. I tried a few new techniques on the backgrounds. I came up with a way to incorporate fireworks, and transposed images on the melons, which made them all look great, even though some were ridiculously tedious and complex. It was a lot of work but I had a wonderful time.” – Pat O’Brien
Fruit Bowls are Great Patriotic Watermelon Carvings Too
Pat also created three melon fruit bowls for the event.
Pat wrote to me that he enjoyed showcasing carving to a huge audience. Not only did people attending the event get to see his carvings but, some of Pat’s carvings are featured on the Destination America website. Although Pat doesn’t have cable and can’t verify for himself, he’s heard that the displays have also been shown on television promos for Destination America.
What a fantastic job Pat did! I know Pat’s carvings will inspire many readers. If you want to learn the essential techniques of carving letters and words, check out my newest lessons, Carving Letters and Words.
Pat ended his message to me with,
…thank you for all your great ideas and techniques!
Thank YOU to Pat for letting us share his beautiful patriotic watermelon carvings!