You think you get into the spirit of autumn? You haven’t met Leonardo Urena.
He won this year’s annual giant pumpkin weigh-off contest Saturday in Elk Grove with a white 1,938-pound behemoth.
In a news release, the Cosumnes Community Services District said Urena, who came down from his home in Napa, has been competing in the pumpkin weigh-off contest for 20 years, and he also took home the biggest pumpkin title in 2005 and 2011.
“I was kind of surprised when it hit the scale and it was 19,” Urena told the community services district. “It was wonderful.”
Dozens of pumpkins of all shapes and sizes were hauled onto the scale via forklift while a gourd-loving crowd cheered expectantly.
Jose Cardenas, another Napa resident, came in second place with a 1,728-pound pumpkin. Cardenas and Urena grew their pumpkins in the same patch and travel across California for competitions.
Urena’s winning pumpkin beat his personal record by a pound, and it will be harvested for seeds that Urena will replant or give away to fellow pumpkin growers.
“It is a great sport,” Urena said. “Come and join us!”
Some pumpkins in the 600 to 1,000-pound range were hollowed out and used as boats in Sunday’s Pumpkin Regatta on Elk Grove Park Lake.
Elk Grove’s pumpkin weigh-off celebrated its 25th anniversary this year. In 2018, Jose Ceja of Napa set the state record with a 2,138-pound pumpkin.