Thursday, October 11, 2012

Vermont Pumpkin Chuckin' Festival 2012 Final Results

by Dave Jordan (event organizer)

Sponsors and Volunteers

I want to thank all the sponsors and volunteers who helped make this an educational and fun event. With great weather, great music, great competitors and a large crowd I think a good time was had by all. My intent was to create an event which encouraged innovation, made learning math and physics fun, taught woodworking and testing in a competitive environment, similar to a Soap Box Derby that inspired me when I was a kid. The best distance has improved from 139' in 2009 to 438' in 2012. No doubt some competitors and spectators have picked up some ideas to improve beyond this next year.

I'm sorry for neglecting to mention all the sponsors and volunteers during the festival while we had an audience, hopefully I can partially make up for that now. Please let me know if I forgot anybody or if I got the results wrong; or if you have suggestions for next year. Also, if anyone has pictures or comments they would like to share, please post them on the Vermont Pumpkin Chuckin' Facebook page for everyone to enjoy.

Much appreciation goes to:
Mark and Lauri Boyden who let us use their beautiful location and worked many hours before, during and after the event.
The Cambridge Area Rotary club for promoting, parking, serving food, tshirts, posters.
The Lamoille Family Center for providing many excellent kid activities during the festival.
Len Amblo and his company, Button Professional Surveyors, for providing the distances of the chucks accurately and efficiently.
Apple Dannie and Technically Leonard's for producing an excellent video of last year's event and for video this years event. You can see last year's video by clicking on it below.
Mike Dunn and his sister Julia for providing a professional PA, wireless mikes, and excellent chucking music, both live and recorded.
John Smyth and Jenn for providing excellent music to assemble trebuchets by.
Bruce Wallace for doing an excellent job as Master of Ceremonies; and his wife Joyce for spending her anniversary watching the family chuck pumpkins.
Mike Gladu for record keeping, spreadsheet programming, organization and helping me plan the event.
Callan Janowiec for making my job much, much easier by registering, organizing and running the spreadsheet and picking the winners of each category.
Bill Orleans and his company Professional Publishing and Distribution for distributing posters to promote the event.
Rusty the Pirate for entertaining the audience.
Mickey and Minnie Mouse for entertaining the audience.
Chelsea Ingram for singing the National Anthem.
Caroline Jones for signing the National Anthem.
Stowe UPS Store for copying hundreds of orange pumpkin festival posters, waiver and registration forms.
All the other volunteers that helped me setup, take down, measure trebuchets, monitor safety, register etc.
Bees Knees, Trattoria LaFesta, Stowe Soaring and Umiak Outfitters for donating prizes.
Sponsors: Union Bank, Cambridge Artist and Entrepreneurs, Mortgage Financial, Johnson Hardware, Cambridge Village Market, Tatro Construction, Essence Salon and Day Spa, JCF, Essex Discount Beverage and Deli, Smugglers' Notch, Affiliated Associates, Matt's Wash and Wax, Rainville's Collision and Repair, House of Troy, Smugglers' Notch Distillery.

Angry Pumpkin - Grand Prize Winner at VT Pumpkin Chuckin'
Angry Pumpkins
Grand Prize, Best Design

We had 18 trebuchets this year, spread across 5 divisions. The machines compete within their division and the top 3 teams in each division get trophies. The best distances in the Lightweight and Middleweight divisions are scaled up (* see explanation below) for their height to compete with the best distance in the Heavyweight division. The scaled up best distances compete across all divisions for the grand prize of "Best Design" and first pick of the 4 prizes contributed by Stowe Soaring, Trattoria LaFesta, Bees Knees and Umiak Outfitters.

The grand prize was awarded to Angry Pumpkins, captained by first time competitor, Dwight Snowberger (from CT) with team members, Amanda Snowberger, Steven Snowberger and Deborah Snowberger.

Angry Pumpkins threw 256', which scaled up to 438 feet. Congratulations to Dwight and his team for their excellent floating arm design and unique batting style firing. I hope they come back next year to defend their title.

* The lightweights have a 41" height limit so they are multiplied by a scaling factor to let them compete fairly with the heavyweights, which have a 10' (120") height limit. The scaling factor is the ratio between their heights which is 120/41 = 2.9268. The middleweights have a 70" height limit so their scaling factor is 120/70 = 1.7142. The heavyweights are not scaled since they are already at 10 feet. The intention of this scaling twist is to give the younger, smaller competitors a real chance at winning the whole competition. A nine year old kid would have a hard time safely making a 10' tall, 500 lb. trebuchet, but they are perfectly capable of safely making a 41', 20 lb. machine. If any trebuchets are over the height or weight limits for their class, they are penalized based on how much they are over, to make it fair for all competitors. See the "Rules"section for details.

Lightweight Division

First place went to Wolf Den, Cub scout troop 692, captained by Brian Jadus. 2nd place went to "Hades is here", our first all women team, only 3 feet behind first place! 3rd place went to Wolf Howl, another cub scout troops captained by Tony Medici. Check out the full results summary below for all the team members and details.

Middleweight Junior Division

1st place was again (3 years in a row!) awarded to "Pumpkin Chuckin Airlines", brothers Daniel and Michael Wallace from East Haddem, CT. 2nd place went to first time competitor, "Cloud Splitters". Check out the full results summary below for all the team members and details.

Middleweight Open Division

This division was highly competitive with 1st, 2nd and 3rd place all being with 37 feet of each other. 1st place was "Angry Pumpkins", 2nd place was SUNY Plattsburgh, only 37 feet back. 3rd place was Team Jordan (third year competitor) which actually threw 10 feet farther than SUNY but was penalized for being 6 pounds overweight. 4th place went to Team Stapleton, 5th place went to 1st time competitor, Trebu-Ray, 6th to Dante's Inferno Junior (also a 1st time competitor and spinoff of the Brown Family Dynasty that won the heavyweight division last year), 7th place went to 2nd time competitor, "Looking For A Satisfying Splat". Check out the full results summary below for all the team members and details.

Heavyweight Division

In the glory (and dangerous) heavyweight division, 1st place went to Pumpkin's Bane (excellent realistic medieval design). 2nd place to Dante's Inferno Senior and the Brown family from Mass. They also get my vote for best paint job, best decorating their trebuchet AND most stylist monogrammed team shirt - just like last year, except a new design. 3rd place to "Weapons of Medieval Destruction". Last year, Nick Helms, the captain of "Weapons" threw a show-stopping 519 feet with a "whipper" design. 4th place went to first time team, "Duck and Cover". 5th place went to "Bad Boomer". "Bad Boomer" lived up to its name and broke on its first and only throw due to an assembly error by Dave Jordan, the event organizer. In 4 years, I have yet to throw a pumpkin forward; but there is always next year.

Unlimited Division

The Unlimited Division has no height or weight limits and doesn't compete for prizes, just "Throw for Show". Local inventor, JJ Spanier from Cambridge brought his monster trebuchet with 1000 lb. counterweight and threw an 8 pound pumpkin 293 feet for the farthest throw of the day. JJ has participated 4 years in a row and aspires to throw a pumpkin 1000 feet, perhaps with a whipper design inspired by Nick Helms's 2011 machine.

We hope to see you all back next year at the 5th Annual Vermont Pumpkin Chuckin' Festival.

Full summary of results
----- Lightweight Division Age: 10 and below Max trebuchet weight: 20 lbs Max trebuchet height: 41" Min pumpkin weight: 3 oz.
Place Team name Height Weight Best throw Adjusted 1st Wolf Den, Cub Scout 39" 19.5 lbs. 44' 129' Troop 692 Captain: Brian Jadus, Alex Jadus, Kyle Marvin, Alec Blevins, Declan Shea, Aiden Blevins, Zachary Spitznagle, Grant Schroeder Comments: 2nd year competitor 2nd Hades is Here 39" 19.5 lbs. 41' 122' Captain: Victoria Jadus Tammy Jadus Comments: First all female team 3rd Wolf Howl 39" 17.0 lbs. 28' 82' Captain: Tony Medici, Jacob Medici Logan Vaughan Dylan LeBlanc Mark Brodkowski Xander Zipko Ethan Tardiff DJ Hankey Jim Zipko
----- Middleweight Junior Division Age: 17 and below Max trebuchet weight: 100 lbs Max trebuchet height: 70" Min pumpkin weight: 1 lb.
Place Team name Height Weight Best throw Adjusted 1st Pumpkin Chuckin Airline 65" 98 lbs. 102' 175' Captain: Daniel Wallace Michael Wallace Comments: Winners 3 years in row 4 year competitor 2nd Cloud Splitters 59" 88 lbs. 43' 73' Captain: Thomas Daley Sam Crites Comments: First time competitors
----- Middleweight Open Division Age: Open to all ages Max trebuchet weight: 100 lbs Max trebuchet height: 70" Min pumpkin weight: 1 lb.
Place Team name Height Weight Best throw Adjusted 1st Angry Pumpkins 66.5" 97.0 lbs. 256' 438' Captain: Dwight Snowberger Amanda Snowberger Steven Snowberger Deborah Snowberger First time team, walked off with the Grand prize 2nd SUNY Plattsburgh 68" 99 lbs. 219' 375' Captain: Tobey Betthauser Cody, Mike, Ashley Taylor, Jordan, Jordyn, Dan, Jerry Third year competitor, winner 2011 3rd Team Jordan 68" 106 lbs. 229' 359' Captain: Don Jordan Chris Jordan Johnnie Jordan Third year competitor 4th Team Stapleton 70" 97 lbs. 184' 314' Captain: Unknown Comments: First time competitor 5th Trebu-Ray 62" 100 lbs. 131' 224' Captain: Raymond Chamberlin Comments: First time competitor 6th Dante's Inferno Junior 74" 157 lbs. 206' 154' Captain: Ryan Brown Comments: Spinoff of the Brown family dynasty 7th Looking For A Satisfying Splat 55" 100 lbs. 59' 100' Captain: John Doty Olivia Doty Ethan Boutin Comments: 2nd year competitor
----- Heavyweight Division Age: Open to all ages Max trebuchet weight: 500 lbs Max trebuchet height: 120" Min pumpkin weight: 5 lb.
Place Team name Height Weight Best throw Adjusted 1st Pumpkin's Bane II 110" 466 lbs. 262' 262' Captain: Chris McGrody Scott Bardeni Comments: 2nd year competitor 2nd Dante's Inferno Senior 112" 410 lbs. 186' 186' Captain: Tim Brown Amanda Brown Kim Brown Michelle Choate Dan Choate Comments: Winner 2011, 2nd year competitor, monogrammed team shirts Best paint job and decorating 3rd Weapons of Medievel Destruction 151" 613 lbs. 280' 166' Captain: Nick Helms Bruce Penfield Barry Shelton Mike Minnie Nancy Penfield Comment: Best throw of the day for legal entries 3rd year competitor, last year threw a whopping 519' 4th Duck and Cover 129" 431 lbs. 123' 114' Captain: Ryan Doyle Joe Deslauriers Comments: First time competitor 5th Bad Boomer 119" 542 lbs. 0' 0' Captain: Dave Jordan Comments: 4 year competitor, yet to throw a pumpkin
----- Unlimited Division (Throw for Show) Age: Open to all ages Max Trebuchet Weight: No limit Max Trebuchet height: No limit Min pumpkin weight: No limit, whatever the captain wants to throw
Place Team name Height Weight Best throw 1st Agricultural Implements 16' 2000 lbs. 293' of Destruction Best throw of the day Plans to throw 1000' someday