34th annual Pumpkinfest virtual weigh-off a success

There were no stands and no audience but, in spite of the dramatic changes due to COVID-19, the growers came to the Giant Vegetable Weigh-off in Port Elgin on Saturday October 3rd as the 34th annual Pumpkinfest carried on virtually.

Working with Grey Bruce Public Health and the town of Saugeen Shores, strict protocols and controls were put in place, including no public attendance allowed.  The public instead were able to watch from their homes.  Growers arrived in a highly monitored, restricted area, staying in their vehicles until directed to unload,  The vegetables were then weighed  one grower at a time and then had to disperse from the area immediately.

From as far away as Englehart in northern Ontario and Shawville, Quebec, growers brought their giant pumpkins, squash, tomatoes and many other, some unusual, products they had grown.

                                            Winner at 1,939.5 lbs. by Phil & Jane Lyons and Chris Hunt

There was no doubt that the weigh-off was very different but MC Dave Middleton and radio personality, Robin Woods, carried through the virtual presentation flawlessly – interviewing growers, thanking sponsors and keeping the event moving forward throughout the day at the Missionary Church (former arena).

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The Pumpkinfest board and the many volunteers worked tirelessly to ensure that the audience who once would have attended the weigh-off and many other events related to Pumpkinfest weekend could still enjoy them from the comfort of home.

John Miller gives coordinator Joanne Robbins a    quick hug in passing and then self-distances
                                                                     Some of the many volunteers


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Todd Kline – past Canadian Record holder for giant pumpkin (2016)

      First time grower, Mya and dad, Mark Pollock of Kincardine – although not a pumpkin winner, she did win for her watermelon at 124.5 lbs.



From the pumpkin pie sale by Rotary to the Star Search and Cinderella Car Show, the many events were all organized and some pre-recorded

                                 Star Search Winners

Jeff and Payton Myatt winners of Star Search with an exquisite duet of ‘A Whole New World’

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