In last few years one of the fastest growing sports is that of paddling Giant Pumpkins. It started on Lake Pesaquid in Windsor, Nova Scotia, Canada. Today there are dozens of races involving Giant Pumpkins. My first competition was in Canada. The last couple years, I have stayed closer to home and paddle in the Regatta at Damariscotta, Maine. Some say there is a science to paddling pumpkins and others say it is a matter of luck dumb luck.I say they are right!.
My first experience was exciting. 10,000 people lining the streets of Windsor. I felt like a rock star or super athlete. Then I struggled with a three quarter mile paddle to the finish line. My pumpkin was almost 800 lbs.and felt like I was moving an army tank. OK it was my first try. So the next couple were 550 lbs. The first was stable and I placed 1st. But, last year I couldn’t go 2 strokes without tipping. So, this year I have a 525lb baby giant. Here I am next to it. And, this time we are flipping it so the flat side is up. I am told it will be far more stable and I am all for stability in my life.
Each paddler designs his or her paddle for color and flavor. Lasts year I was a cow, this time we will decorate it to look like a space shuttle. I will dust off an old astronaut jumpsuit to add flavor to the event.
Sunday at 2pm we will race – working with the coastal tides. For more information go to http://www.damariscottapumpkinfest.com. The wet summer created a problem for growers. there are not many Giants out there. But, in a few years I can see this having the flair of an Olympic event. What is more earth friendly than racing pumpkins. Watch for my decorated vessel…. to come.