2017 was an average year for many pumpkin growers around the country, but it was a good year for me to check out pumpkin events.
This year the Bushmere Arms Giant Pumpkin Festival was being held on the 9th of April, one week after The Great Pumpkin Carnival here in Hamilton, which meant I could finally check out the Bushmere Arms event in Gisborne for the first time.
This was the 15th year the event has been run with proceeds from this event going to the Gisborne East Coast Cancer Society. Event organisers told me the turnout of pumpkins were down but was the biggest turnout of people ever.
Gisborne’s Giant Pumpkin Expert
While the Waikato has Tim growing big giants (he came down to Gisborne as well) Gisborne’s giant pumpkin grower with consistently large giant pumpkins is Jared. It was great to catch up with him and be there when he loaded his pumpkin up.
And it was also great to see a tripod setup in person, something that is widely used overseas and is the solution when you don’t have a tractor handy.
Jared was running a competition amongst his Facebook friends to guess the weight of the pumpkin, my guess was 570kg’s and you’re going to have to watch this video I put together of the trip and event to find out how close I got.
I know a few people were slightly confused as to why Jared’s pumpkin didn’t win 1st place, but in the good spirit of the event Jared’s pumpkin which is grown from premium seed from the US isn’t eligible as it wasn’t one of the seeds/seedlings sold at the start of the growing season.
But Jared being the all round good guy he is, uses the seeds from his giant as the ones being sold next year.
Debbie Gregory won the event with a 233kg pumpkin named Little Rick and second place went to Jane McBreen with another awesome looking pumpkin coming in at 213kg’s.
There were also some great events on the day, some of which I am sure will make it to other events including our own.
Check out these photos from the event.
Big thanks to Bushmere Arms for a great event and everyone we spoke to, I really enjoyed my time in Gisborne and am looking forward to heading back when I can and checking out more pumpkin events around the country next year.