Two Pumpkins Break California Record at Half Moon Bay’s World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off 2011

Winning 1,704-pound pumpkin at Half Moon Bay's World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off 2011

What a difference a year makes! Last year’s World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off in Half Moon Bay, CA took place on a beautiful warm, sunny day. Today, it was heavy mist, fog, cold and wet. But that didn’t dampen the spirits of the crowds – they turned out in droves. In fact, this year’s event seemed like the largest one ever!

And it was certainly one of the most exciting  – Half Moon Bay weighed in two of their BIGGEST pumpkins and set two NEW California State records (for the winning pumpkin, pictured above, and the runner-up)!

Top prize went to Leonardo Urena (pictured below) of Napa, CA (he placed 3rd in 2010). His jaw-dropping Giant Pumpkin weighed in at an impressive 1,704 pounds – breaking a California State record! That’s a whole lot of pumpkin… and 169 pounds more than last year’s winner. Just think of all the pumpkin pies you could make 🙂

Leonardo Urena and his winning 1,704-pound pumpkin at Half Moon Bay's 2011 World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off

Runner-up was Brad Bordson (also runner-up in 2010) of Marysville, CA. His stunning 1,693-pound Giant Pumpkin (pictured below) also set a new California State record.

Half Moon Bay's World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off

Third place went to Tim Mathison (he placed 12th in 2010) of Napa, CA  with his winning  1,554-pounder (pictured below). Tim has been growing pumpkins for only five years, so that’s quite an accomplishment. Guess wine isn’t the only thing Napa is famous for these days!

Giant Pumpkin at Half Moon Bay's World Championship Pumpkin Weigh Off

Coastside Pumpkin Winner (for the second year in a row) went to Farmer John of Half Moon Bay. His winning pumpkin weighed in at an impressive 755 pounds (almost double the weight of his 2010 winning pumpkin).

The Most Beautiful Pumpkin went to Eric Carlson of Portola Valley, CA. The 286-pound beauty (pictured below) won based on color, shape and size.

Most Beautiful Pumpkin 2011 - Half Moon Bay World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off

Disqualified Pumpkin went to Russ Pugh of Santa Rosa, CA. His massive 1,794-pound pumpkin (pictured below; that’s me keeping warm with my morning cup of coffee) was disqualified because of a hole at the bottom that extended all the way up to the pumpkin’s core. If not for that hole, his pumpkin (weighing 90 lbs more than the winning pumpkin) would have taken first place!

Alana with coffee standing behind the 1,794-lb disqualified pumpkin at Half Moon Bay's World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off 2011

As the Pumpkin Weigh-Off was winding down, the heavy mist turned to rain. Didn’t seem to bother the crowds who stayed after the competition to watch the Sardine Family Circus perform (they’re on tour from London, England and will also be performing at next weekend’s Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival). They’re VERY entertaining!

Sardine Family Circus at Half Moon Bay's World Championship Pumpkin Weigh Off

As a fellow Brit, I couldn’t help but find it quite ironic that it was raining during their entire performance, but somehow it only seemed to add to the overall festive atmosphere. In fact, considering it was the worst weather we’ve been in for a pumpkin weigh-off over the last seven years, it was one of the most fun pumpkin weigh-offs ever! See you next year 🙂

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