It was just shy of a world record previously set by a Belgian grower.
While you’ve been wasting the past few days watching the NFL or MLB tiebreak games… or if you’re really desperate, the Ryder Cup… New Hampshire has been celebrating the accomplishments of a true champion. On Thursday night, a man at the Deerfield Fair broke the record for the largest pumpkin ever grown in North America.
Steve Geddes of Boscawen, New Hampshire, saw his entry into the annual Giant Pumpkin competition tip the scales at 2,528 pounds, a hefty enough weight to not only land him the first-place ribbon and $6,000 in prize money, but also two even more ego-boosting honors: North America’s largest ever pumpkin and the second largest pumpkin ever grown anywhere in the world.
“Ever, not just this year. Ever,” Woody Lancaster, the northeast representative for the Great Pumpkin Commonwealth, which serves as the governing body these sorts of things, told the Boston Globe. He then added, “It is a big deal,” ostensibly for all y’all big city folk who might not think that growing a pumpkin that weighs about as much as a small car is a big deal.
The all-time record still belongs to Belgian grower Mathias Willemijns, who had a pumpkin certified at 2,624.6 pounds back in 2016 in Ludwigsburg, Germany. (Here are some tips if you’re looking to grow your own.)
Meanwhile, Geddes himself wasn’t that surprised. “I knew going in [to the fair] I would have something special,” he told his nearby paper, the Concord Monitor. “Pumpkin growers can measure them in inches and use a chart that gives you the weight within 5 percent. By late July I knew it would be a state record and possibly a U.S. record, and there would be a smaller chance it would be a world record.”
Geddes began growing giant pumpkins ten years ago after a friend got him into the hobby. Clearly, he’s found the “addictive side” of competitive pumpkin growing since. “I knew right away it was the second biggest ever,” he explained to the Monitor. “When you’re involved, you know what’s been grown and what hasn’t been grown.”
Apparently, the giant pumpkin circuit is still in full swing, so an outside chance exists that Geddes could see his record broken. But assuming that’s not the case, and his entry ends up being one of the three heaviest in the world by next week, his monster pumpkin will end up at the New York Botanical Garden—ostensibly so y’all big city folk can see what a real gardener does with his time.