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Pumpkin in flight (courtesy

I’ve seen more than my fair share of potato cannon videos. While I’m glad that the hair spray industry has found a way back from the post-80’s doldrums, spud guns don’t thrill me at all. But a pumpkin cannon? Now that’s what I call entertainment! Which would be even better if a couple of Cucurbita pepo cannons competed for long range accuracy shooting pumpkins genetically engineered for optimal ballistics. I’d buy that for a dollar!

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  1. while i know some gals that use static guard as a hair spray, technically it is not. just sayin’.

  2. Don’t tell Starbucks that pumpkins are ammunition or it will discontinue Pumpkin Spice Latte and hire 10,000 illegal immigrant pumpkin farmers.

  3. Have a look at the Mythbusters pumpkin chunk special from 2012. Some giant air cannons shot pumpkins about 1000 yards

    People spend years making cannons, catapults etc for the event.

    • Not this year. Well, I should qualify that as saying that the “World Championship of Punkin Chunkin,” an annual event in Delaware, won’t happen this year. They had a bad accident last year that injured several people, and the nonprofit organization, as well as the farmer that allows the event on his land, are being sued; so no more punkin chunkin world championships.

      • “… so no more punkin chunkin world championships.”


        I *hate* Delaware pumpkin Nazis…

        • A metal piece of one cannon, about the size of a car door, blew 30 to 40 feet in the air and hit a woman in the head when it came down. She suffered a fractured skull and part of her skull was removed because of brain swelling. The article I found didn’t say if she has finally recovered. I would hope the event was properly insured so that she can be compensated without ruining the lives of the event organizers or the farmer.

        • Perhaps they needed to sell tickets with the agreement that spectators wouldn’t sue for the result of paying money to be close to big things that go boom? Just about every spectator event has disclaimers printed on the backs of their tickets, but I don’t know if they’re legally enforceable.

          Reminds me of a proposal that a Road and Track writer came up with decades ago.
          We’d be able to get out of signing liability waivers all the time if we opted to carry a card (had to sign a waiver once to get the card) that basically said “If I get hurt by my own choice of recreational activities it’s nobody’s fault”. Sitting in the stands at a car race and a wheel breaks off in a crash and knocks your head off? You wanted to sit there, knowing that there was a very slight possibility that would happen.

      • So, the guy riding out to measure the throws flipped his ATV and sued.
        The suit was dismissed in 2015 and the event resumed.
        Here’s a passively constructed description for you, the ATV he was riding flipped:

        “A lawsuit filed in 2013 by a former Punkin Chunkin volunteer effectively grounded the event the past two years. The lawsuit was filed by Daniel Fair, a former Punkin Chunkin “spotter,” or volunteer who rode around the grounds helping determine the distance pumpkins traveled from their machines.

        Fair’s complaint alleged Wheatley Farms Inc., the owner of the property, and Punkin Chunkin Association were liable for a spinal injury he suffered when the ATV he was riding flipped.

        The lawsuit was dismissed in June 2015.”

        Then a TV producer got her head busted open when the loading hatch blew off a cannon in 2016:
        Because of the incident, the Science Channel canceled its “Punkin Chunkin” special, which was scheduled to air on Saturday night. “We are sending our hopes and prayers for a full recovery to the injured woman, her family and loved ones,” it said in a statement. Spokesman Paul Schur declined further comment.
        A production company, Sharp Entertainment, was producing the special for the Science Channel.
        “Our thoughts are with Suzanne, her family and friends as she continues to recover from this accident,” said a spokeswoman for Sharp Entertainment via email.
        Dakessian said she’s saddened that the (TV) show was scrapped.
        “It’s heartbreaking,” said the producer, who was supervising a crew of camera operators for Sharp Entertainment.
        “I was really looking forward to seeing what came from all that hard work I put in,” she said. “The days of the chunk, I was working 15-hour days, and to not see the product after all that blood, sweat and tears that went into that show, I’m really bummed out about it.
        “But I understand that this is a big world, and it’s much bigger than me, and I don’t have any kind of right to say what people should or shouldn’t do.”

        The injury occurred in an area open only to team members, staff members and media – the public was stationed behind a fence farther away but were able to see the entire scene.

  4. It would be good if they had to lob them at each other. Performance of the cannons would develop more quickly.

    Or . . . a pumpkin skeet event.

    PULL! Throw up a (manned) CNN van.

    • “It would be good if they had to lob them at each other.”

      Wasn’t it George Carlin that wanted ‘Civil War’ reenactors at the historic battlefields of Gettysburg and the like to use live ammo?

  5. Pumpkins will become a greater warfare item when the Fing chinettes finish buying up our nations Lead, Copper, and Zink.

  6. A guy who worked for me needed some time off for this, because he was on “Team Onager” (the catapult, not the critter) in the historical / mechanical energy category.

    Of course, he got the time, and I lost an afternoon nerding out over this stuff.

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