2018 Pumpkin Regatta- Plenty of Pumpkin(s) for Paddling … and Pie
By: David Gates
What’s the most interesting thing you have ever paddled? The answer next year could be “a pumpkin,” especially if you also like growing extra large gourds, like the 2, 469 lb. winning entry of the Pacific Giant Vegetable Growers contest this year.
Alder Creek has been a sponsor of the West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta, in mid-October, since the inception of the event 15 years ago- supplying paddles, pfd’s and safety kayakers. With really nice weather this year the estimated crowd swelled to 20,000 spectators.
Admission to the festival is free, as are most of the family-friendly, related events.
The first race of the day is reserved for growers of the giant pumpkins, although they have the option of designating a representative paddler. Another race is for sponsors and special guests. The third race is for paddlers who have entered into a lottery for a spot in one of the grower’s pumpkins, and this year there were participants who ranged from a high school senior to a New Zealand citizen who first witnessed the Regatta the previous year. The last race is between the City of Tualatin Police and Fire Departments.
Recognition is given not only to the early finishers, but also for decorating pumpkins, costumes and “good sports.” There are various degrees of seriousness of the paddlers, but there is plenty of fun whether you are paddling or watching, and there’s plenty of pumpkin pie, if you get there early enough.
Want to grow giant vegetables and show them off?
Want to paddle a giant pumpkin?
Just watch and eat pumpkin pies?