Mega Pumpkins Rolling for Half Moon Bay

The Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off is back with the colossal specimens of gourd-tastic growth.

A NEW VEHICLE? We're often implored to move up to a larger car, if our life choices warrant such a decision. We might be planning on doing more home improvement work, or opening a dog-sitting business, or starting a fix-it gig, or we could even have a growing brood of our own. What these life changes usually translate into, eventually, is the requirement for a roomier mode of transport. What, though, if you've committed to a particular lifestyle that involves you journeying to Half Moon Bay on a Monday in early October, each and every year? You might now have a large-ish car or truck that can hold a pumpkin that weighs several hundred pounds. For pumpkin people who do love growing ginormous gourds do have a charmingly dependable way of gathering for the...

SAFEWAY WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP PUMPKIN WEIGH-OFF, which always occurs just days ahead of the huge Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival. The 2018 competition, the seediest showdown around, is set for Monday, Oct. 8, and talented growers will show with their plus-plus-plus-plus pumpkins. The winner in 2017? Joel Holland of Sumner, Washington, who showed up with one magnificent stem-topper of a champion, a 2,363-pounder. The victor at the 2018 contest will go home with a lot of cash, any way you scoop it: Think $7 a pound, which, if your pumpkin weighs in at over 2,000 pounds, is a lot of dough. And a World Record Pumpkin shall net a "Mega-Prize" of thirty grand. Goodness. Talk about seed money.

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READY FOR A VINE TIME? Be at the I.D.E.S. Grounds in Half Moon Bay, bright/early on Monday, Oct. 8, to witness all of the impressive forklifting and squashes sitting upon super-scales. Can't make it on a Monday? The giant winner will be on display at the Pumpkin Festival on Oct. 13 and 14, 2018.

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