(11:50 AM) Local Pumpkin Growers Place Second, Third In Weigh-Off

Jamestown resident Tim Bailey pictured Sunday with his 1,604 pound-pumpkin at the World Pumpkin Weigh-off in Clarence. Bailey has been growing pumpkins for more than two decades. Photos courtesy the Great Pumpkin Farm

Two area pumpkin growers were big winners at this year’s World Pumpkin Weigh-off.

Andy Wolf of Little Valley took second place at Sunday’s contest, held annually at the Great Pumpkin Farm in Clarence. Wolf’s pumpkin clocked in at 1,911.5 pounds, which netted him $1,500 plus a $1,000 bonus for having a gourd that weighed more than 1,900 pounds.

Tim Bailey of Jamestown placed third in the contest. His pumpkin came in at 1,604 pounds, which helped him earn $1,000.

First place went to Karl Haist of Clarence Center, whose record-setting pumpkin weighed 2,269 pounds at the event. The massive gourd earned Haist the $2,500 first-place prize plus a $1,000 bonus for having a pumpkin weighing more than 2,000 pounds.

Haist also took first place last year, with his entry weighing 2,027 pounds.

Andy Wolf of Little Valley pictured with his second-place pumpkin, which came in at 1,911.5 pounds.

Fourth place this year went to Jeff Podraza of West Seneca with a 1,462-pound pumpkin.

Bailey, who took fifth place in the same contest a year ago, told The Post-Journal last year he has been growing pumpkins for more than two decades.

“I love God’s creation, and to watch it working up close while gardening is great,” he said. “I never get tired of watching how fast the pumpkins grow. They can put on over 50 pounds in a day. … I also enjoy the challenge of the competition. Most giant pumpkin growers are highly competitive but they will help their fellow growers without thinking twice. I love the weigh-offs. They are like a family reunion at the end of the growing season.”