GALVA, Ill. – The 10th Annual Stampede Auction of Champion Pumpkins, held at the East Campus on October 29 at the Black Hawk College East Campus, was a record breaker for the United Way!
Bidders purchased 12 pumpkin lots for a total donation to the Kewanee Area United Way of $4,540 which surpassed the 2011 event that raised more than $3,600.
Students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends came together to purchase perhaps not only the most expensive pumpkins, but best evaluated pumpkins, in the nation. Local bidders and others from around the midwest competed for monster and monstrous pumpkins at the Ag Business Club organized event. Pumpkins were first evaluated and pedigrees/assets “talked” by members of the Livestock Judging Team prior to being auctioned off by long-time event auctioneer and alum Bill LeSage. Other team members assisted as bid spotters.
This year’s pumpkins ranged from the perfect round traditional jack-o-lantern size to one that required two people to lift it. Other unique pumpkins included a ceramic pumpkin from Bishop Hill; a painted pumpkin by John Hartman, Black Hawk College associate professor of art; an 8 pound pumpkin-tater hybrid and a “book-pumpkin” from the BHC bookstore.
Bidders spent on average more than $300 per pumpkin with the top bid of $1,355 going to the Jarvis Simmons syndicate which included the BHE Livestock Judging Team & Family, AgriGold Genetics and Ashley Middleswarth.(lot 5)
The winning bidders were:
- BHC Ag /Auto Mechanics Club
- Friends at the Community Education Center
- Black Hawk College East Foundation Board of Directors
- Deb Rhoades
- Carter and Nolan Hoge
- Lee & Joshua Denzer
- Science Club / Phi Theta Kappa / Liberal Arts and Science Department
- Western Illinois University BHE Alumni Mark Hoge
- The Gary & Jodee Werkheiser Family
- Iowa State University BHE Alumni
Members of the college’s Livestock Judging Team who “talked up” the pumpkins were Will Coor of Salem, N.C.; Andrew Huffman of Bluffton, Ind.; Isaak Mersch of Twelve Mile, Ind.; Max Look of Peoria, Ill.; Amber Shipe, Waterloo, Ind.; Logan Rinehold, Waterloo, Ind.; Sarah DeSchepper, Altona, Ill.; Austin Weber, Avilla, Ind. and Nick Fitzsimmons, Vail, Ind. Bid spotters were Nick Fitzsimmons, Will Coor and Jack Bloomberg of Berwick Ill.
The pumpkins were donated by Theresa’s Tasty Produce of Atkinson, Nature’s Garden of Galva and Black Hawk College faculty and staff.