Giant pumpkin weigh-offs are a fall tradition in both Europe and North America. But what are you supposed to do with a giant record-breaking pumpkin that weighs over 1,000 pounds after the event? Race it in a pumpkin boat race! Here’s everything you need to know about the unusual sport of pumpkin boat racing.
Pumpkin Boat Racing: America
Pumpkin Boat Racing first started gaining popularity in America around 2004. Here’s a video from the Travel Channel documenting the fringe sport. It showcases various Halloween pumpkin boat racing competitions across the United States, including Maine and Oregon.
Maine is famous for its annual Pumpkinfest and Pumpkin-Boat Regatta. Smaller pumpkins compete in a paddle competition where the larger pumpkins get motors attached to them. Part of the fun for spectators is watching the pumpkin boat captains fall into the chilly waters.
Pumpkin Boat Racing: Europe
But the Germans have really taken a liking to the fringe aquatic sport of Pumpkin Boat Racing. They even host the Pumpkin Boat Racing European Championship where contestants race their pumpkin boats fitted with 3.5 horsepower outboard engines
Giant pumpkins don’t make the best racing boats but they do have one advantage over wood and carbon-fiber, you can eat your boat.
Eating What You Race
Giant pumpkins don’t make the best racing boats. But they do have one advantage over wood and carbon-fiber, they can be turned into pumpkin soup, pumpkin pies, and other delicious treats. So the next time you are carving and pitting a pumpkin to make jack-o-lanterns and pumpkin pies, remember some people are doing the same thing making a racing boat.