Garden fair hosts pumpkin festival

by Petra Lessoing
86th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

The Kaiserslautern Garden Fair sponsors its first pumpkin festival until Oct. 31.
Visitors can admire more than 20,000 pumpkins and 150 different types until the garden fair closes its doors the last day of October. There are colorful and tasty pumpkins and those good for decorations and carving.

“From the most popular pumpkin to eat in Germany, the Hokkaido, the Baby Boo, Mandarin Sweet Dumpling and Butternut, to decoration pumpkins, almost the whole pumpkin family will be presented,” said Stefan Hinner from Ludwigsburg, who helped with the set-up of the festival.

Life-size figures made of pumpkins can be found throughout the entry area and Neumühlepark.

“Our mostly disabled workers put a lot of efforts in creating farm animals such as sheep, pigs, a cow, a horse, a tractor and agricultural machines,” said Sandra Laux, the garden fair’s spokeswoman.

“The figures are placed within our autumn flowers: dahlias, asters and chrysanthemums. Besides, there are nicely created beds with straw balls, kites and scarecrows,” Mrs. Laux said. “We tried to come up with something special again to close out this year’s season.”

A very unique event during the pumpkin festival is the First Open Pumpkin-Weighing Championship in Rheinland-Pfalz Sept. 27. Pumpkin breeders and hobby gardeners can participate.

“The heaviest pumpkin ever weighed in Germany was found during the world biggest pumpkin exhibition in Ludwigsburg in 2008,” Mr. Hinner said. “It weighed 604 kilograms.”

The first winner will receive €1,000, the second €500 and the third €250.
The championship starts at 2 p.m. near the fountain in front of the entrance. To register, call the garden fair at 0631-710070 or e-mail
A pumpkin show opens Sept. 26 in the flower hall. The pumpkin store and restaurant offer pumpkin champagne, pumpkin soup, pumpkin cream and pumpkin carving sets.

The autumn festival also features special activities for children such as the use of pumpkins as a sports instrument, pumpkin carving, pumpkin soapbox races and a children’s kite fest Oct. 3.

The garden fair is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturdays, Sundays, Oct. 3 and during school break, which is from Oct. 12 to 23. Tickets cost €6 for adults and €3 for children.

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