Pumpkins will fly through the sky, seeds will be spit, Wiener dogs will race, pie eating competitions will be fierce, and toes will be tapping to live bluegrass tunes at the Moab Pumpkin Chuckin’ Festival.
2014 marks the 9th year for this quirky Fall festival held in Moab, Utah. The Youth Garden Project -a nonprofit focused on growing healthy kids, food, and community- puts on the annual festival to provide a fun family-friendly community event and to raise funds for their programs. Pumpkin Chuckin’ is well attended by both locals and visitors to Moab alike.
The highlight of the festival is the competition between trebuchet, catapult, and slingshot teams that hurl pumpkins through the air at distance markers and targets on the launching field. These teams of 2-4 people hand build the chucking contraptions and compete against each not only on distance and accuracy, but are also judged on: theatrics, sportsmanship, and machine design. Chucking teams come from across the state and beyond to compete and consist of families, friends, clubs, and school groups. There will be a new division in the chuckin’ competition this year, a Junior Catapult division! Young Chuckers in this division will launch 1-2 pound pumpkins (instead of the usual 8-10) and will have at least one 5-12 year old on each team. In the chucking zone spectators’ level of excitement is high, as they count down each launch with the announcer in anticipation, and cheer excitedly as pumpkins soar through the air!
As if the chuckin’ competition isn’t enough entertainment, there’s also dozens of kids games, a straw bale pyramid, pony rides, food and craft vendors, live music, a wildly popular Wiener dog race, and seed spitting, pie eating, and costume contests to enjoy at the Fall festival. Running out of Road, a bluegrass band from Durango, Colorado, is this year’s headliner band. You can tap your toes to their tunes at the main stage or enjoy the music from afar as it carries over the festival grounds. Local acts can also be seen at the main stage, along with a myriad of contests, which are open to all festival-goers.
Whether you’re competing for all the glory in the pumpkin chucking competition, perusing vendor booths for crafts and homemade treats, or bringing the kids for a day of family fun, there’s something for everyone at the Pumpkin Chuckin’ Festival!
Moab’s 9th Annual Pumpkin Chuckin’ Festival will be held on Saturday, October 25 from 10:00am – 4:00pm at The Grand County High Soccer Field: 400 East & Red Devil Drive. Admission is $10 for Adults and $5 for Youth (3-14 years old). Children 2 and under free!
To learn more about Pumpkin Chuckin’ and to participate in the launching contest, visit youthgardenproject.org/pumpkinchuckin.