It's a winner!
SPICER -- The biggest pumpkin on record in the state of Minnesota was grown in a small pumpkin patch in rural Spicer.
Chad Revier set the new state record Saturday during the Great Pumpkin Commonwealth pumpkin contest in Stillwater.
His prize-winner weighed in at 1,428 pounds -- well over the previous state record of 1,258.
"It was pretty exciting," Revier said.
Based on its measurements, he expected his pumpkin to weigh at least 1,300 and hoped it would be 1,350.
When the pumpkin was lowered onto the scale, however, it showed 1,428.
"It was 9 percent heavier than I expected," he said. "It beat the existing state record by about 170 pounds."
Better than the $1,000 grand prize, Revier gets bragging rights that he hopes will last a few years.
Revier has quite a few things to brag about this year when it comes to pumpkins.
He brought three giant pumpkins to the contest and had one even larger than the prize-winner.
The mammoth gourd weighed just a hair over 1,500 pounds. But it wasn't a pretty sight.
It wasn't eligible for the contest because it had cracks, and even when he loaded it onto a trailer Friday night, pumpkin juice began oozing out of it, he said.
When it was hoisted onto the scale the next morning, liquid, seeds and "chunks of pumpkin poured out it," he said. "And it smelled really bad."
But that didn't diminish the pride when the final weight was announced. "It was neat just to see the 1,500 pounds come up on that one," Revier said.
Even his smallest pumpkin took third place with a weight of 1,065.
Other top growers came from South Dakota and Wisconsin.
Revier said he'll harvest the seeds from the state champion and plant them again next year to see if he can repeat his success.
Veterans from the giant pumpkin community have warned him of the "sophomore jinx" that apparently plagues winners seeking a second-year follow-up to the fame.
Growing big pumpkins is "definitely a hobby where the odds are stacked against you," he said.