Deployment Day at the Damariscotta Pumpkinfest

Volunteers distributed 71 giant pumpkins along Main Street in Damariscotta to be decorated by artists for the Damariscotta Pumpkinfest and Regatta.

DAMARISCOTTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- The Damariscotta Pumpkinfest and Regatta kicked off for the tenth year on the mid-coast. Deployment Day marks the beginning of the October festival.

Deployment Day is when three trucks, dozens of volunteers and several fork lifts move giant pumpkins to their new home along Main Street. This year 71 pumpkins were moved by the team that Bill Clark, Damariscotta Pumpkinfest and Regatta Director, organized. 

"The big ones are monstrous this year," said Clark. "They're just immense and you can see the hatches that we had to cut because we can't roll them over."

It takes five men just to move the smallest one, but the biggest pumpkins weigh more than 1,700 lbs. It's why crowds of people, like Damariscotta resident Karen Belknap, come just to see the well oiled machine that is Deployment Day.  

"It was just amazing," said Belknap. "I've been walking around for like an hour watching them come in on the trucks."

Businesses and artists get involved by sponsoring and turning the pumpkins into art pieces. Ronna Lugosch of Peapod Jewelry in Edgecomb chooses to do both and she wastes no time.

"The day when they deliver the pumpkins I come by to look at the pumpkin to see what shape it is in and make sure the idea that we've been working on will work with it," said Belknap.

There are different sponsorship opportunities if you're thinking about sponsoring a pumpkin on display for next year's Pumpkinfest. Prices start at $200 for the smallest and get all the way up to $1,000 for the biggest.

© 2017 WCSH-TV


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