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Pumpkin Fun’s Getting Even Bigger

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Tony Frohloff, from Minden, won the Largest Pumpkin competition with this 160kg beauty

May 30, 2018

With an estimated 17,000 people at your festival, it’s no wonder things can get a little bit squashed …

Bad puns aside, the annual Goomeri Pumpkin Festival was bigger and better than ever at the weekend with an extended program of events on Saturday leading up to the main day on Sunday.

Saturday’s schedule included live music at the Hall of Memory, wine tastings, a cutting competition, live music in Dickinson Park during the afternoon and Twilight Markets in the evening.

But that was just the beginning of the festival activities.

Sunday’s program was packed with all the usual fun of the fair including pig races, camel rides, whip cracking, post-ripping, chainsaw demonstrations, vintage cars, historic machinery, an animal nursery, a reptile show, market stalls, live music on stage and roving entertainers.

Then there were all the pumpkin-themed events: Celebrity chef demonstrations (by Kingaroy’s own Jason Ford), Pumpkin Bowls, Giant Pumpkins, Decorated Pumpkins, Pumpkin Shot Put, a Pumpkin Pageant and, of course, a Pumpkin Street Parade.

New events this year included a Dash For Cash (for the very fit, up Policeman’s Hill!)

However, the highlight of the Goomeri Pumpkin Festival is always the trademarked “Great Australian Pumpkin Roll” during which hundreds of pumpkins meet their maker on Sunday afternoon as they roll down Policeman’s Hill.

No one claimed the $1000 Lucky Spot prize this year, although at one stage it looked under threat when a wayward pumpkin advanced a brother gourd closer to the circle … to the gasps of the crowd.

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Competition Results

Great Australian Pumpkin Roll

1. Kayla Battershell, Glasshouse Mountains
2. Will Tate, Obi Obi

1. Matthew James, Annerley
2. Michelle Raymond, Coolum

Pumpkin Patch Snatch

1. Adara Felsman, Sunshine Coast
2. Matthew Howie, Chermside

1. Fynn Johnson, Birkdale
2. Blake Johnson, Birkdale

Pumpkin Bowls

  • Junior –  Ryan Ellis, Maryborough
  • Adult – Rikki Gee, Kallangur

Pumpkin Power Shot Put

  • Men – Philip Grant, Hervey Bay – 15.00 metres
  • Women – Renae Ball, Kurwongbah – 8.30 metres
  • Junior – Murray Townsend, Kenilworth – 10.72 metres

Dash For Cash

  • Aiden Boysen, Nambour – 17.23 seconds

Giant Pumpkin

  • Open – Tony Frohloff, Minden – 160kg
  • Junior – Jordan, Dylan & Riley Frohloff, Minden – 63kg

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Acting Senior Constable Lorenzo Marabini, left, and Officer-in-Charge Sergeant Dave Gillies, right, from Goomeri Police, were keeping a close eye on Gympie Mayor Mick Curran and South Burnett Mayor Keith Campbell at the Great Australian Pumpkin Roll

And the Great Australian Pumpkin Roll begins for 2018 … as always, community leaders and sponsors were given the first opportunity to despatch their pumpkins down Policeman’s Hill

Some snapshots from the Great Pumpkin Roll … left, Goomeri Pumpkin Festival patron Phyllis Hopf; centre, not all pumpkins have to be orange and green; right, Pageant winner and festival committee member, “Fairy Godmother” Penny Ruthenberg was also a-rollin’

Getting ready to roll … Layla, 5, and Nathan McIntosh, from Gympie

Matt Collins and Shaz Birkett, from CROW-FM, took part in the Sponsors’ Roll

The “Pumpkings” team from Brisbane have been a part of the Goomeri Pumpkin Festival for years … but they were almost unrecognisable in 2018 without their pumpkin hats! The boys have always won a swag of prizes, and had their eyes fixed on the new Dash For Cash this year

The Junior Roll is always keenly contested before the adults step up to the line for their chance at winning the big dollars

A happy pumpkin starts in journey …

… while a sad one comes to grief

Lee Greenwood, from Hervey Bay, collected a 2nd place and a Highly Commended in the Decorated Pumpkin competition for his “Cute Little Baby’s Shoe” and “Evil Pumpkin”

Lee Greenwood’s carved pumpkins … “Evil” and “Baby’s Shoe” (Photos: Lee Greenwood)

A new Queensland record? Veteran giant pumpkin grower Russell Vogel, from The Caves near Yeppoon, entered this monster

Sue and Jim Colchester, from the Brisbane-based Bell Swagger Morris Dancers, took part in the Street Parade, entertained at the Goomeri Hotel and also did some roving street entertainment with their hurdy-gurdies

Although final figures aren’t in, early reports suggest as many as 17,000 people turned up in Goomeri at the weekend for the festival


Anderssons Fruit Market for quality fruits and vegetables

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