The Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Marblehead will host its second annual Great Pumpkin Carving Contest beginning with a Great Pumpkin Carving on Sunday, Oct. 28, from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. at 28 Mugford St., Marblehead. The public is welcome to participate, and carving tools and snacks will be provided. Participants are encouraged to bring their own pumpkins, but extras will be available for those unable to pick one up beforehand. After the carving event, pumpkins will be taken outside for display, then stored inside until Oct. 31. Any and all carved pumpkins will be accepted for the contest as long as they are delivered in time for trick-or-treating hours on Wednesday, Oct. 31. On Halloween night, the pumpkins will decorate the church lawn, and trick-or-treaters and passers-by will be able to vote for their favorite pumpkin. There is no charge for entering a pumpkin or voting. Also, Marblehead Gardens is offering a $1 discount off any 10-pound pumpkin (or more) if it will be used in the contest. For more information, call 781-631-1215.
The Israeli Festival of the Arts exhibit and sale at Congregation Shirat Hayam, 55 Atlantic Ave., Swampscott, features 1,500 works of art by more than 100 Israeli artists from the Safrai Gallery in Jerusalem. Artwork includes original oil paintings, watercolors, lithographs and etchings. Festival hours are Nov. 15, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Nov. 16, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Nov. 17, daytime viewing only following Shabbat Cafe until 2 p.m., and again from 7 to 10:30 p.m.; and Nov. 18, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. A gallery opening and patron preview party is set for Wednesday, Nov. 14, at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $25 per person and include wine, cheese, music, a guided gallery tour and a coupon for $25 off a purchase of $250-$499, or $50 off $500 or more. For more information, contact Marla Gay, director of congregational life, at 781-599-8005 or Marla@ShiratHayam.org. To purchase preview party tickets, visit www.ShiratHayam.org.