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Worlds Biggest and Heaviest Pumpkin Record 2008

This year's Half Moon Bay pumpkin-growing contest saw a new world record Monday, with an Oregon man's 1,528 lb. gourd claiming the prize.

The heaviest pumpkin wins the annual contest, with the winner taking home $6 per pound, and a potential of $20,000 in prize money up for grabs. That means Starr took home more than $9000 for a pumpkin that weighed in about 150 pounds below the world record. The rest will be divided up among the runners-up.

80 growers competed for the title, with the weighing beginning around 7a.m. and finishing up about four hours later.

This is the second consecutive year Starr has won won the contest.

"When you get into this level of growing pumpkins, that's kind of our goal. Every time we plant a seed, we're trying to break the world record. So to accomplish that at the end of it is every competitive grower's dream," said Starr who drove his great pumpkin south Sunday on a futon that he found on the side of the road.

The biggest pumpkins have about 800 seeds and consume 3- to 4,000 gallons of water over it's four-and-a-half month growing season, which is part of what makes growing these giants such a labor of love.

"You have to maintain a consistent saturation of the soil for water, you have to watch the insects and the disease -- you have to keep spraying for those. It's constantly trimming and bearing vines," explained Brent Chester of Hayward, whose pumpkin weighed in at more than 500 pounds.

The contest precedes Half Moon Bay's annual Pumpkin Festival, which takes place this Saturday and Sunday.



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