Pumpkins, paddlers take to Okanagan Lake for Great Pumpkin Classic

October 17, 2019

The pumpkin patch is bursting as local green thumbs prepare to showcase their handiwork and hit the water for a race unlike any other!

The Great Pumpkin Classic starts Saturday, as one of the cornerstone events for Vernon’s Fall Festival.

“Since January, local growers have been nurturing giant pumpkins – meaning pumpkins that weigh at least 100 Ibs – and now their work is about to pay off,” said Ange Chew, Manager of Tourism Vernon. “Now we’re inviting the public to attend a giant pumpkin weigh in, followed by The Great Vernon Pumpkin Race at Kin Beach.”

Growers will weigh their pumpkins at Davison Orchards on Saturday, October 19th at 11:00 am. The pumpkins will then be hulled out and turned into boats for a race on Okanagan Lake at Kin Beach on Saturday, October 26th from 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm.

Pumpkin growers have an option to keep their gourd, race it, or provide it for someone else to race. If extra pumpkins are available to race, they will be offered for corporate sponsorship at a cost of $500 per pumpkin, with all funds going towards the Vernon Starfish Pack program.

After the festivities, all pumpkins will be composted or delivered to the bunny and donkey sanctuary for yummy autumn treats.

Tourism Vernon is excited to welcome a film crew from South Korea, which will be featuring the event on a travel segment in an upcoming documentary. The Great Vernon Pumpkin Race is co-sponsored by John Deak Realty and a race safety canoe, paddles and wetsuits have been provided by Elements Adventures.

We encourage you to share your Great Pumpkin Classic journey using the following hashtags: #VernonPumpkinClassic #PumpkinWeigh-in #PumpkinRaces #ExploreVernon and #VernonFallFestival. You can find more details at www.TourismVernon.com.

So grab your giant gourd, prep your paddle and celebrate fall Vernon style!