METZ – The 16th Annual Giant Pumpkin Challenge will be held in 2021.
The event is hosted by the Metz and area community at the Hamlet of Metz, located at Sideroad 25 and Line 3, straddling the township line, between West Garafraxa and Wellington North.
The date for the weigh off will be Sept. 25th at 8276 Sideroad 25 Wellington North.
“The pandemic did postpone our family picnic day activities and potluck picnic in the country for 2020 but did not dim the intense competition,” says Jim Coffey, one of the organizers.
“We are planning on having our family day in 2021. Crafts and face painting activities for the kids, bouncy castle for the little ones, miniature train rides, and for the young at heart, the ever famous, pumpkin cannon. Any pumpkin under 6” is welcome to be blasted out of the cannon,” Coffey adds.
All are welcome and visitors can bring their own picnic, although organizers will have hot dogs and hamburgers available with a drink, free of charge and possibly a pumpkin pie.
“All health and safety standards are planned for and met,” states a press release from the organizational committee.
“Today is the day to get your pumpkins planted,” states Coffey, noting that organizer have a limited number of seeds available on a first-come, first-served basis and hopefully a few plants. Anyone who would like to take part in this event, should register with firstname.lastname@example.org by June 1st.
The categories include Governance, which is open to all municipalities in Wellington County. Team Linton was the overall champion for the class in the first competition and the entire event with a pumpkin close to 400 pounds in weight.
“Good thing he works out! Mayor Kelly doesn’t think he can be beat since he has a year’s experience under his belt. Gregg Davidson from Mapleton has other plans, as does Michael Chong, both close contenders in last years event,” said Coffey.
Other categories include:
– 20 years of age and older in the year 2021 – all the experienced people;
– 13 to 19 years in 2021 – good experience for teenagers and growing a pumpkin does have a calming effect on people in general;
– 12 and under in 2021; and
– there is also an open age class for giant zucchinis.
What’s in it for you? Bragging rights and a fun family day in the country. So, mark it down on your calendars. We have seeds and hopefully some plants to transplant. You can buy Atlantic giants from your seed supplier.
This event is possible due to the volunteers of the Metz Community and the support of Wellington North and Centre Wellington townships, organizers note.
Pumpkin starting hints:
– lightly scuff one side of seed with sandpaper, one swipe;
– soak overnight in warm water or milk;
– plant about 1.5 inches deep in fibre pot;
– ask Grandma for her heating pad for a few days. Place fibre pot with seed in it in waterproof container, place over heating pad. Keep moist, not soaked. Should start to see pumpkins in four to six days;
– moisten as needed. Keep in sunlight. A small amount of miracle grow would be nice;
– talk to your plant, its therapeutic during a pandemic. Also, name your plant;
– when it is frost free outside, transplant your plant into large clear area. Protect your plant by covering it with a large pail or pot that has the bottom cut out of it. Wind can break them. Make sure your area is adequately nutriented with horse manure or sheep manure; and
– cover the ground with mulch to prevent weeds.