CROTON-ON-HUDSON, N.Y. — An enormous peach-colored pumpkin was delivered to Umami Café on Tuesday afternoon in preparation for the Great Jack O'Lantern Blaze at Croton's Van Cortlandt Manor.
The pumpkin's weight is a closely guarded secret. A dinner for six at Umami Café goes to whoever most accurately guesses the monster gourd's weight. But owner Craig Purdy says members of the network of competitive pumpkin growers he relies on broke the pumpkin world record this year.
"One of their buddies broke the world record for the first time ever at the Topsham Fair [in Maine] with a pumpkin that exceeded 2,000 pounds. However, word is, back at home, he has a second pumpkin he thinks is going to be ever bigger," said Purdy.
The pumpkin is from more than 500 miles away in New Hampshire. The farm the pumpkin came from is also a closely guard secret.
One waiter at the café, Derrick Wu, called it, "The biggest pumpkin I've ever seen."
October is "positively my single busiest month of the year" for Umami, Purdy said, as one of the closest restaurants to the Blaze, a half-mile and a one-minute drive away.
The Blaze runs for 22 days in October and November and is expected to draw 110,000 people to Croton. Blaze tickets are selling well, with several nights selling out, said a spokesman from the Historic Hudson Valley.