Kanakoa Sugimura’s mother wondered if the giant would fit in the truck Sunday during the Harvest Ag Festival at the Waimea Athletic Field.
“He wanted that one,” she said. “It’s so big he can’t even carry it. He has to roll it.”
Moments later, another Sugimura — Kanaloa — struggled to get his giant pumpkin rolling outside the tent where 2,000 pumpkins of all sizes and shapes were being given away for free.
“Look at them,” Charlie Iona said from atop the county’s mobile stage, where he was entertaining. “There’s two of them trying to roll that pumpkin that probably weighs more than both of the boys combined.”
The free pumpkin giveaway was the highlight of the festival that attracted people from all parts of the island, who snaked around the entrance to the tent housing the free pumpkins.
“We have 2,000 pumpkins this year,” said Stephanie Iona, one of the event organizers.
“Last year, we had more than a thousand, and it wasn’t enough. We also have a lot of little pumpkins because people said the kids like the little ones,” Stephanie Iona said.
”In addition to these that we’re giving away, next week we’ll be delivering an additional 1,500 pumpkins to different community organizations, kupuna care facilities, and some schools,” she said.
A new facet of the festival included the agricultural setup, where people could use the backdrop for photos, as well as two truckloads of fresh, Kauai-grown watermelons being distributed as a fundraiser for the Waimea High School JROTC via its country store. The melons were grown by Hartung Brothers.
Also offered were games, homemade baked goods for sale, and other items.
The festival layout was changed from last year to include a separate tent for food and dining, and an educational component tent housing the free bicycle helmet giveaway by Kauai Veterans Memorial Hospital, which will be hosting its annual Christmas Craft Fair on Saturday, Nov. 2 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the West Kauai Medical Center and KVMH grounds.
The Kauai Fire Department and Kauai Police Department also offered educational material and information, and the 4-H livestock group offered up a mini petting zoo featuring two-week old baby goats that were orphaned at birth.
“I got tired of waiting in the long lines at bon dance,” said Norman Kali, a volunteer with the Hanapepe Colts Pop Warner Association who helped with dispensing flying saucers as a fundraiser to help its cheer squad travel to Florida for the National Pop Warner Cheer and Dance Competition.
The Harvest Ag Festival was sponsored by Bayer, Corteva Agriscience, Hartung Brothers Hawaii, Kekaha Agriculture Association, the Hawaii Crop Improvement Association, Alexander &Baldwin, Beck’s Hybrids, the Hawaii Farm Bureau, Kamehameha Schools, Global Ag Services, the Hawaii Hotel &Lodging Association, Kani Wildlife Control, Makaweli Beef and Kauai Shrimp.