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Archive for October 7, 2011

Pumpkin Boat Races

The farmers in Maine take great pride in growing enormous champion pumpkins. They are displayed proudly with ribbons for the largest and most beautiful. Afterward, what happens to the losers and what do you do with a 600 pound pumpkin after Halloween? Well, several alternatives include the trash heap, painting the surface, or hollowing out the pumpkin and turning it into a boat. The initial race was not too well planned. Pumpkins when hollowed out are not inherently stable. The first race resulted in most of the participants taking a dip in the cold Maine waters. By the next year, a bit of Yankee ingenuity took over. There were outriggers and pontoons, which vastly stabilized these oversized gourds. I was disappointed to find that no one went swimming. The competitors were spirited and the boats were decorated with all manner of imagination. A good time was had by the entire crowd on hand in Damariscotta.