More than 4,500 people visited Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center in Orange, from Oct. 8 through Nov. 1 to see decorated scarecrows at the 6th Annual Scarecrow Festival at Shangri La Gardens. Visitors could vote for their favorite scarecrow and winners were announced at Autumn Fair held Saturday, Nov. 1.

More than 60 scarecrows were created by local families, non-profit groups and businesses, making this event the largest scarecrow festival in Texas. The Scarecrow Festival Contest winners for 2014 are: 

Business I Category

1st PlaceFrey’s Landscape “Scarey Crow”

2nd PlaceSoutheast Texas Hospice “Sponge Bob Scarecrow”

3rd PlaceCottage Cuttings “Mr. Cutter…Troll”

Honorable MentionInnovations Hair Design & Day Spa “Olaf Loves SUN!”

Business II Category

1st PlaceSabine Federal Credit Union “Olaf”

2nd PlaceFirst Financial Bank “E.T.”

3rd PlaceSouthwest Texas Home Health “Untitled”

Honorable MentionInternational Paper “Papermaking Pete”


1st Place        St. Paul’s Kids for Christ 

“Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat”

2nd PlaceSalem United Methodist Church “Armed and Dangerous”

3rd PlaceTrinity Baptist Church “God Bless America”

Honorable MentionFaith UMC – Stand25 “Untitled”

Family Category

1st PlaceWatson-Wheeler Family “Untitled” 

2nd PlaceDavid Cagle “Constable Crow”

3rd PlaceWayne and Alice McCray “Captain McScary”


1st PlaceChildren’s Garden Committee “Froggy McRibbit”

2nd PlaceIvy League Garden Club “Ms. Ivy & Family Gardening”

3rd PlaceKimmy Mazzagate – H.E.A.R.T. “H.E.A.R.T.”

Honorable MentionGirl Scout Troop 3262 “Untitled”

School Category

1st PlaceJulie Landry’s 3rd Grade Class – LCE “Cat In The Hat”

2nd PlaceEvadale ISD Art Honors Society “Nightmare Before Christmas”

3rd PlaceSt. Mary Catholic School “Freedom is not Free”

Honorable MentionVidor Jr. High Art Club “Mr. Spare Parts Scarecrow”


Each year Shangri La Director, Rick Lewandowski, spends hours viewing the scarecrows to discover which ones will win the Director’s Awards. Lewandowski said, “This is difficult because you can see everyone was mindful to use recycled or reusable materials and it’s obvious that all the designers and their teams spent a great deal of time and energy to create unique and memorable scarecrows people of all ages could enjoy.” 

The Director’s Choice winners for 2014 are:

Most Popular Scarecrow: Frey’s Landscape “Scarey Crow”

Best Use of Recycled/Reused Materials: Vidor Jr. High Art Club “Mr. Spare Parts Scarecrow”

Best Recycling Message:  Wayne and Alice McCray “Captain McScary”

Best Original Theme for a Scarecrow: Cottage Cuttings “Mr. Cutter…Troll”

Best Botanical Theme Using Artificial Materials:  Sabine River Ford “New Phase in Town”

Best Wildlife-themed Exhibit: Sabine-Neches Master Naturalists “Whoo Are The Master Naturalists”

Lewandowski stated that this was one of the best Scarecrow Festivals and Autumn Fair events because of all the businesses, groups, and families that participated in making the scarecrows. Lewandowski said, “We thank the scarecrow-makers and the scarecrow-viewers for taking the time to participate in this wonderful fall event. We are thrilled that you enjoy seeing the gardens in the autumn and bring your families and friends to enjoy the scarecrows”.