Our beloved Pumpkin King once sailed the seven seas with his army of loyal admirals and comrades following close behind him. One night, the seas were unforgiving and destroyed his entire fleet while sailing in the Tampa Bay waters. All of the fleet sunk to the bottom of the Bay, and most of the Pumpkin King’s army perished.
Night after night, the Pumpkin King dove to the bottom of the Bay to recover their bodies. No matter how many he collected, he could not appear to save their souls. His dreams turned to nightmares. For nearly a century, he was tortured by their souls. They would ask him to rescue them and send them on their way to the afterlife. No matter his methods, he could not determine why their souls could not be set free.
Through trials and tribulations, The Pumpkin King discovered the citizens of Ybor City had placed a curse on the seas that unforgiving night that sent the Pumpkin King’s fleet to their ultimate demise. The citizens of Ybor City at the time were not ready to be conquered by the Pumpkin King. Little did they know, he was not a king the pillaged and destroyed. Rather, the Pumpkin King wanted to join all of the lands and create a place where all were welcome and felt at home.
Filled with rage and anger, the Pumpkin King lashed out at the citizens of Ybor City. He terrorized the district. He wreaked havoc on cigar factors and brewing companies. After one man was found dead, the Pumpkin King was arrested and hung in the 1800s.
Once hung, he was dealt the same fate. The Pumpkin King’s soul was now as tortured as those who had fallen while under his leadership. Since his death, the Pumpkin King has been working to save his soul and those of his admirals and comrades.
Alas, there is no way to save their souls and move on to the afterlife. However, the Pumpkin King has found a solution. One night a year, the souls can manifest into various beings and become alive again. They can find peace of mind by celebrating the Legend of the Pumpkin King with a march down historic 7th Avenue in Ybor City to celebrate the life of the Pumpkin King and his followers. By celebrating his legend, we, the citizens of Ybor City, can give all the tortured souls one night a year to be celebrated rather than despised. We can show the Pumpkin King and his army that we embrace the Legend of the Pumpkin King.