Monday, March 20, 2006

Free Seeds - see note at the bottom of this message...

To the Best Pumpkin Fans in the west -

Soon begins the process of planning the 5th Annual Big Sky Giant Pumpkin Weigh Off.

Since our last weigh off I have been in touch with growers all over the country requesting their seeds for our growers in this area. It is amazing how generous everyone is with giving away their seeds. I send them a self-addressed stamped bubble padded envelope and weeks later it is returned with anywhere from 10 to 300 seeds!!

Next I'll get together the supplies needed to divvy up this stock pile of seeds into 5-8 seeds per small packet plus copies of growing instructions sheet to be distributed throughout the Bitterroot and Missoula valleys by mid February.

In March I would like to have a meeting of this years volunteers to decide who, when, where and how we'll divide up the tasks that make our weigh off event so great. All this is similar to how we've done business the last four years.

HOWEVER, there is a new twist in store this year...

I am ever so hopeful that another grower will rise to the occasion and I can pass the "Ringleader's" baton on to someone else. I am very proud of how far we've come and believe me I intend to be a very active participant and volunteer (I still need to grow a bigger pumpkin!!). However, I have accepted a new challenging position at my work and, as a consequence, juggling family time and work responsibilities will be even tougher than before. That being said, pumpkin growing and involvement with the weigh-off is my best and most rewarding stress reliever. I don't want our event to go away as we get such terrific feedback and we should all be proud at how successful the weigh-offs have been. I want to be there when that first 1000 pounder comes through the gates!

I am happy to hold the reins through this year if that's what it takes, but I am hopeful that some of you will raise your hand and begin to take charge of the organizing, planning, networking, etc. behind the scenes. I have lots of contacts to share as well as ideas. I have been extremely fortunate for the number of my friends that have enjoyed helping make our weigh off run so smoothly and so many of them not even growers!! I don't feel it is fair to expect such dedication from non-growers nor can I continue to ask year after year.

Please think this over and consider your participation.

I am sending this out to our volunteers and key growers. Perhaps a one or two year rotation of the weigh off coordinator would work too? Let’s put our heads together and make future weigh offs and pumpkins continue to grow.

You folks have been key to making our event what we have today and I couldn't be more proud or more grateful.

Thank you to each one of you!



Free Seeds!!!
You can now pick up a packet of free Atlantic Giant Pumpkin Seeds and informative growing tips from the Ravalli County Fair office between 8:30 and 4 pm, Monday - Friday, while supplies last.

(Please park outside the fairgrounds as it is a muddy mess due to construction!!)


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