Travis Gienger spent six months growing the largest pumpkin in North American history, then he drove it from Minnesota to California over the weekend.
SACHA PFEIFFER, HOST:
If you like sweater weather or are a big fan of decorative gourds, we have someone you need to meet.
TRAVIS GIENGER: My name is Travis Gienger. I am a horticulture teacher. And I also grow giant pumpkins.
PFEIFFER: And we do mean giant.
MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:
Last weekend Gienger, who is from Anoka, Minn., traveled 2,000 miles to the World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off in Half Moon Bay, Calif., with some very special cargo in tow.
(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)
UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #1: Here we go. Wow.
UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #2: Woo (ph).
UNIDENTIFIED PERSON #1: That is the largest pumpkin ever grown in North America.
PFEIFFER: The record-breaking gourd came in at a staggering 2,560 pounds, but it didn’t happen overnight.
GIENGER: So this journey starts about mid-April. So that’s about 180-day journey of growing these things.
PFEIFFER: What was his secret?
GIENGER: A labor of love, man.
KELLY: Yeah. Also, some good genetics, lots of fertilizer and a pinch of luck. Now, if you’re wondering how on earth he managed to move that pumpkin across the country, the answer is slowly.
GIENGER: Thirty-five-hour drive from Minnesota to Half Moon Bay, Calif., with a pumpkin. It’s not like you can set any records for speeding or anything, but we got it there.
PFEIFFER: Gienger won’t have to worry about gas money, though. His pumpkin won him $9 per pound, more than $23,000 in prize money.
KELLY: Oh, my gosh, which is enough to buy you quite a few pumpkin spice lattes.
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