Pumpkin-Carving and Costume Contests Ensure a Festive Halloween at THI

Staff from The Texas Heart Institute proved just how creative and artistic scientific experts can be as they got into the Halloween spirit this week.

The Institute’s annual pumpkin-carving contest showcased imaginative scenes of intricate heart surgery, Texas memorabilia, a macabre movie recreation, and a celebration of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. The judging was intense as dozens of researchers, clinicians, and staff cast their votes for pumpkins submitted by Administration and Development, the Center for Clinical Research, Regenerative Medicine Research, The Texas Heart Institute Center for Cardiovascular Care, and Electrophysiology Clinical Research & Innovations.

The team from Administration and Development — including Henry Aceves, Karen Gunay, Tanya Rojas, Daphne Singleterry, Marcia Strauss, Julie Voss, and Sheila Vrana — ultimately took home first place for their “Deep in the Heart of Texas” operating room vignette, complete with surgeon and patient.

And the costume contest at The Texas Heart Institute Center for Cardiovascular Care revealed equally inspired efforts. From E.T. to Spider Woman, Bacon and Eggs, a drum major, and many more, the staff put smiles on patients’ faces as they created a fun and festive office atmosphere on Halloween.

Claudia Iturriaga took home first place for her truly original “Cereal” Killer costume, covered with small cereal boxes and knives. Emma Hernandez earned second place for her E.T. and Elliott presentation — complete with a shining red heart in E.T.’s chest — and Angela Quijano won third place for her homemade paper mâché pumpkin she donned as headgear.

Congratulations to all winners and participants for making this Halloween one to remember!

View photos of the Institute’s pumpkin-carving contest.

View photos of The Texas Heart Institute Center for Cardiovascular Care’s Halloween costume contest.