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Quick Facts

Half Moon Bay’s World Heavyweight Championship of Godzilla Gourds Celebrates 51st Anniversary Event on Monday, October 14, 2024!

Spectators Welcome!

IDES Grounds
735 Main Street
Half Moon Bay, CA
per pound prize
World's Biggest
Prize at $9 Per Pound
mega prize
$30,000 Mega-Prize
at Stake for a
World Record Breaking
live stream
Follow the Weigh-Off
Live Stream on

Great Pumpkin Commonwealth
Half Moon Bay is an Official GPC Site
a 2021 pumpkin weigh-off contender suspended in mid-air
Giant pumpkin lifted by forklift onto the official scale

Will the impressive world heavyweight record of 2,749 pounds set at our 2023 event get squashed by a Volkswagen-sized pumpkin in 2024 in Half Moon Bay? No weigh? Weigh! Bring it on beefy, brawny, burly behemoths!

The excitement is building in Pumpkintown as the World’s Greatest Gourd Growers and their Goliath, mind-blowing, Rhinoceros-sized orange orbs hope to crush the world record onthe morning of Monday, October 14, at the 51st Annual Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off — in the World Pumpkin Capital of Half Moon Bay, California — the kick-off to a big week of events culminating with Half Moon Bay's world-famous Art & Pumpkin Festival which returns for its 51st rendition on October 19-20

Weigh-Off organizers and title sponsor Safeway are offering the world’s biggest top prize of $9/pound for the 2024 weigh-off champion. Also at stake are thousands of dollars in super hefty prize money doled out to the top 20 plus the big carrot: a $30,000 total mega-prize for a new world record pumpkin entered at Half Moon Bay.

The weighing of pumpkins will begin around 7am and anticipate ending the weighing around 11am followed by the awards presentation and luncheon.

Beauty will share center stage with beefy brawn — a special $1,000 prize will be awarded to the “Joe Cotchett Family Most Beautiful Pumpkin”.

Additional special bonus prizes include: Biggest California Pumpkin — $1,000; Biggest Coastside Pumpkin — $1,000.

Using forklifts and special harnesses, the gargantuan gourds will be carefully placed on a 5-ton capacity, industrial-strength digital scale under the watchful eye of officials from the San Mateo County Agricultural Commissioner's Office of Weights, Sealers, and Measures. Half Moon Bay’s Weigh-Off will serve as an officially sanctioned Great Pumpkin Commonwealth (GPC) site.


IDES Grounds, 735 Main Street, Half Moon Bay CA. Get directions


Follow the Weigh-Off Livestream on Facebook.


Growers are responsible for bringing their entries to the weigh-off by 7:00 a.m. Weigh-Off staff will move the entries using brute strength manpower, special harnesses and forklifts. All entries will be handled with care. See the Official Rules.


Weighing and inspection will be officiated by the GPC and San Mateo County Department of Agriculture Office of Weights and Measures. The official weighing will be conducted using a 5-ton capacity digital scale.


This event is open to growers of giant competition-sized pumpkins only. Growers are required to pre-register online. This will help us manage and control the event and provide an accurate count of entries. Participating growers are allowed to have a limited number of family and assistants (max. 4 including grower). Your cooperation will help us run a well-organized event.

Online registration will be available here closer to the event.


There will be an awards luncheon to honor all contestants immediately following the Weigh-Off.


Registered Weigh-Off growers and their traveling party (4 max.) are cordially invited to a VIP (Very Important Pumpkin) Party with complementary food and beverage at Cameron’s Inn & Pub on Sunday, Oct. 13 from 5-8pm. Please bring your Weigh-Off pumpkins to the VIP party for news media on-site to preview the Weigh-Off entries.

How It All Began

Sometimes a little seed can go a long way. What started out in 1974 as a fun, light-hearted contest between Circleville, Ohio and Half Moon Bay, California, two cities proclaiming to be the Pumpkin Capital of the World, has grown into Half Moon Bay’s Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off, the Super Bowl of pumpkin weigh-off competitions worldwide.

Lore has it that while visiting Half Moon Bay in 1974, Frank Barnhill, then mayor of Circleville, Ohio, was deeply impressed with the prolific and passionate local pumpkin-growing culture. He met with members of the Half Moon Bay City Council and they agreed to have their two proud pumpkin-loving cities square off in the first head to head pumpkin weigh-off, hauling the largest local gourds to their historic city halls for the official weighing competition. Once concluded, the two mayors got on a phone call to announce their respective winning weight and grower. To formalize the proceedings, county ag representatives officiated both weigh-offs to make things official. That first year, Half Moon Bay’s biggest pumpkin, 132-pounds, grown by John Minaidis, won by one pound. Half Moon Bay brought home the coveted title of Pumpkin Capital of the World and a legend was born.

See how the grand champion pumpkin weight has grown over the years.



1st place prize money will be awarded in a “pay-by-the-pound” system with the champion receiving a hefty $9 per pound.


The Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off is offering a special $30,000 mega-prize for the world record breaking pumpkin at the prestigious Half Moon Bay event. To receive the $30,000 mega-prize, the grower must break and hold the world record at the conclusion of the Half Moon Bay Weigh-Off. If two or more growers happen to break the world record at Half Moon Bay, the prize money would go to the grower of the heaviest pumpkin. The current world record heavyweight champion pumpkin is 2,749 pounds held by Travis Gienger of Anoka, Minnesota set at our 50th annual weigh-off event on October 9, 2023! Here's how the $30,000 breaks down: the winner receives a world’s biggest $9 per pound plus the difference to get to a total of $30,000.


1st Place — $9 per pound
2nd Place — $3,000
3rd Place — $2,500
4th Place — $2,000
5th–10th Place — $1,000 each
11th–20th Place — $200 each


  • World Record Pumpkin — $30,000 (total)
  • 1st Place Pumpkin — in addition to $9 per pound:
  • Biggest California Pumpkin — $1,000
  • Biggest Coastside Pumpkin (Montara to Pescadero) — $1,000
  • Joe Cotchett Family Most Beautiful Pumpkin — $1,000
  • Special GPC plaques and ribbons will also be awarded


Instagram: https://instagram.com/hmbpumpkinfest
X (formerly Twitter): @HMBPumpkinFest


For press and sponsorship inquiries and assistance, please contact:
Tim Beeman of Miramar Events at 415-999-2428 (mobile), This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or
Ronan Fowler of Miramar Events at 650-678-5274 (mobile), This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off
51st Annual
Heavyweight Championship of Gargantuan Gourds

October 14, 2024 - 7am to 2pm
Main Street, Half Moon Bay, CA