Make Sure it is Totally Orange
If there are green spots on the pumpkin, they may indicate that it isn’t going to ripen any more.
Check for Holes
Holes, splits, cracks, and crevasses all mean one thing: potential bug damage. You definitely do not want that unpleasant surprise.
Look for Bruises
Bruises indicate that your pumpkin will decay a lot faster once carved.
Feel it Out
A bumpy pumpkin will make for a tough carving job. Look for smooth surfaces.
Leave the Stem Alone
Do not pick up a pumpkin by the stem. The stem will snap and your jack-o-lantern will be ruined!
Before You Carve
Pumpkins, like most squash, will keep for a while if you store them in a cool dry place. Once you carve them, they will start to decay, so don’t start carving too far in advance of Halloween!