Pumpkin Wars in Keene, New Hampshire

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Have you heard that Keene, New Hampshire, will be squaring off against Highwood, Illinois, to win top pumpkin festival honors on October 20, 2012? They’ll be competing to see which town can set a new world record for the most lit pumpkins, which will require lighting more than 32,000 jack-o-lanterns in one location. There will also be competitions to see who can surpass the highest number of people simultaneously carving pumpkins (the current record is 965 participants); and win the title of “longest line of pumpkin pies” by lining up more than 800 of the seasonal dessert. In addition, each community will feature pumpkin bowling, costume contests and a “land regatta” where townspeople race 200-300 pound pumpkins on a 150-yard course. And if that’s not enough to bring you to Keene with a car full of pumpkins, Drew Scott — one of HGTV’s “Property Brothers” — will be on hand to help residents make pumpkin history for the television special “Pumpkin Wars.” Coverage will air on Wednesday, October 31, at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

Naturally, we want to make sure Keene wins this year’s competition and we’re going to need all of you to help make that happen. Use the comment section below to submit your best ideas on how we can all work together to make sure Keene — and thus New England — comes out on top!

  • Not being able to afford the high price of gas to travel to festivals that families would like to attend I’m sure causes many a problem. It leads to low low attendance and loss of revenue for these events. Is there any bus companies could run buses down Rt 91/95/84 and stop at posted rest stops to pick up people and/or pumpkin entries to help win this contest? Maybe,Yankee could help publish in this column the times they’d stop at different rest areas. Banners on the buses are great advertising aids for all businesses and politicians willing to sponsor their help with this event. I’m sure some children would love to have their pumpkin creations included, but have no way of getting them there and parents would sure remember who sponsored the transportation. Where is the spirit of the old New England stick togetherness? Let’s get it together and stick it to win.

  • Sounds like fun competition. We were in Sugarbush Vermont for about 15 years and the fall competition there involved tossing late summer and fall fruits and vegetables at each other across a field. They really brought out the troops!

  • Get rid of the politics and bring the “food court” back out onto Main Street! MOST pumpkin fest visitors like it that way and it would give more exposure to downtown Keene shop and store owners. Strolling downtown to look at a bunch of empty wooden pumpking holding shelves is not anyone’s idea of fun and that’s what you get when you cater to only those business owners who cannot think nor see outside the box. Bring the fun and excitement back downtown!

  • I look forward each year to pictures of the festival in Keene, admiring all those original
    carved pumpkins special for this one time. That’s a lot of work requiring a special talent.
    As usual, it is a beautiful sight to behold!


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