Giant Pumpkin Festival - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Giant Pumpkin Festival

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NEKOOSA (WAOW) -

The Nekoosa Giant Pumpkin Festival may look like a regular fair, but in the back, there's something out of the ordinary.

As the name claims, there are giant pumpkins and competitors don't take growing them very lightly.

"The easiest way to describe it is like taking care of a pet,” said Glen Martin, a pumpkin grower from Combined Locks. “It takes a lot of time."

Him and his wife Margaret are pumpkin growers have been coming to the festival for six years and won the contest twice.

This year, they took second place with a pumpkin weighing more than 1,400 pounds. Even though they didn't win, they say they'll come back looking to be number one.

"We're hoping next year that we're not second place that we take that trophy home again," said Martin.

The festival features more than just giant pumpkins. There's a carnival, a craft fair and even a car show. People keep coming back every year to enjoy the festival.

"I've been coming with my mom for years and years as long as I can remember," said Rikkilee Holden of Wisconsin Rapids.

Organizers say the event isn't just a good time for families. They say the community feels the affect of these giant pumpkins too.

"It brings the community together and they love it,” said Jeff Peters, who is on the board of directors for the festival. “I mean they keep coming back every year."

He says that the event couldn't happen without community support.

“The community just surrounds us and it's just awesome to have their commitment it really is," he said.

The event brings big fun, big pumpkins and even bigger crowds. Organizers say the event brings in about 20,000 people. All of the proceeds from the event go back to the community to help fund scholarships for schools in the area.

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