Pumpkin chunking featured at ag farm

TORY VAN BLARCUM
Features Editor

The KC Agriculture Student Association has found a unique way to get rid of the large number of pumpkins it has grown at the KC demonstration farm.

Chunkapalooza features a pumpkin chunking contest that will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, at the farm, located at 2211 Texas 135 just south of Overton.

The ASA wants clubs or groups of students to build catapults or trebuchets, which are medieval military engines for hurling heavy missiles, to chunk their pumpkins.

The contest will determine which team’s device can throw a pumpkin the farthest.

Students are asked to do most of the building of their contraptions and not buy them.

No explosives, engines, motors or compressed gasses of any kind are allowed on the devices but the pumpkin has to go a minimum of five feet.

The ASA is looking for more teams to join this event; seven teams have signed up so far. The event costs $20 per team. The teams can have as many members as they’d like to have.

Each team will be given three pumpkins ranging in weight from seven to 15 pounds but only two must be launched to qualify to win. The teams’ score will be the average of the farthest and shortest throw. The teams are competing for percentages of the total entry fees. Awards will be given for the first, second and third farthest distances and for the most creative launching device.

“Our goal for the pumpkin patch is to provide a fun way to get the community and our students out to the farm,” Dr. Karl Steddom, biology and agriculture instructor, said. “A lot of people in the community don’t know Kilgore College has this facility,” .  “We are also looking at this as a recruiting tool for the college where we can show off our activities to the community. The more we can get Kilgore College’s name out to the public the better.”

Activities also will feature a pumpkin patch where people can buy pumpkins grown at the farm and at a table run by the Early Childhood Development Center students that will have pumpkin decorating and other activities for children in the community. There will also be a hayride to show students how the farm operates and what it offers. ASA hopes to make this an annual event, but needs campus support to make that possible.

For more information, contact Steddom at ksteddom@kilgore.edu or 903-983-8656.