20201003

Family of Ronnie Anderson honored

Family members of the late Ronnie Anderson, who contributed so much to the the annual Allardt Pumpkin Festival for so many years, were honored at this year's festival kick -off ceremony. Ronnie's widow Rebecca was named Festival Queen, surrounded here by family and friends.

 

 
The Allardt Pumpkin Festival Committee and the City of Allardt today recognize and pay tribute to the late Ronnie Anderson for his contributions to the City of Allardt and to the Allardt Great Pumpkin Festival and Weigh-off. And we welcome his family to the place of honor on our stage.

More than once in past years the Committee asked Ronnie for the privilege of naming him and his wife Rebecca as Festival King and Queen in honor of his tremendous contributions to the festival for so many years. But he always answered, “I’m just too busy that day.”

And that was the truth. Nobody ever worked harder than Ronnie Anderson to make sure everything at the weigh-off and the festival went well.  Through hard work and faithfulness he shared in the success of every event, from getting the Allardt landscape ready for thousands of visitors, to securing garbage cans, to getting the stage at City Hall set up, to helping make sure the giant pumpkins, green squash, and watermelons made their way safely through the weighing process.

Ronnie was alway in the weigh-off pictures, usually with a rope in his hands, straining to help steady an 8 or 900 pounder gently to its resting place on the scales. He served as Site Coordinator for the past few years because of his up close contact with all the entries. He was the one who could spot any flaw that would disqualify an entry from competing.

As the planning for this event got underway in earnest this year amid all the uncertainty and apprehension, all of us thought it and more than one of us voiced it openly, “We sure do miss Ronnie.”

Ronnie was an employee of the City of Allardt since 2005, founder and former pastor of a local church, a fierce prayer warrior, a devoted husband, father, and grandfather. He had the heart of a pastor and could always offer a listening ear and a word of encouragement

With Ronnie’s wife Rebecca today are Ronnie’s children, their spouses, and his grandchildren.

Michael and Laura, Bo and Sallie, Kyla, Jordan,  Jared and Tori, Zack and Keisha, Austin and Nastacia.  Grandchildren – JD, Elisha,Ben, Ian, Lucas, Kenzie, Ryliegh, Neyland, and William

To his family we say thank you for sharing Ronnie with us all those years when he worked long hard hours to make sure the festival and weigh-off actually happened.

And thank you for letting us honor him today by honoring those he treasured most, his family.

 

2020 weigh-off winners

Bruce Terry of Helenwood, TN, broke the Allardt Weigh-off record with this 1731.8 pound pumpkin.

 





 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

277.6 pound watermelon grown by Frank Mudd in Flaherty, KY.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

243.6 pound bushel gourd grown by Jeremy Terry of Helenwood, TN. 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tennessee state record long gourd – 127 inches, grown by Jeremy Terry of Helenwood, TN


 

20200929

UPDATED FESTIVAL SCHEDULE WITH NEW SPONSORS!!!!

 29th Annual Allardt Great Pumpkin Festival
and Weigh-off Events, Saturday, October 3

Allardt's 29th Annual Great Pumpkin Festival and Weigh-off is set for Saturday, October 3. (One day only.) Food and crafts vendors will be set up in Bruno Gernt Park and in front of the FCBE Alternative School all day. (Allardt is in the Central Time Zone.)

In a sincere attempt to follow the June 2020 Tennessee Pledge – Guidelines for Attractions, Large Venues, & Large Community Events – adjustments have been made to the program of events for this year only. Vendor Park booths will spaced out to provide for social distancing. Hand sanitizer will be abundantly available at multiple locations. Face masks are recommended as appropriate. Some events have been cut from the schedule.

Pumpkin Run - Registration 7 a.m. to 7:45 a.m. Oct. 3 at Allardt School. Line-up 7:45 to 8 a.m., and start time at 8 a.m. Categories of entry are 10K run, 5K run, 3K, and 1 mile Fun Run. Entry fee is $15 for the 10k, 5K, and 3k, ($40 for family 3+ entries) and $10 for the 1 mile Fun Run. Sponsored by Hall Family Pharmacy to benefit the Pat Summitt Foundation. Entry forms available at Hall Family Pharmacy. Register the morning of the run or online at https://greatpumpkinfestivalpumpkinrun.itsyourrace.com/even….

Festival Kick-off Ceremonies –10 a.m. at Allardt City Hall. Chairman Cathy Jeffers will welcome everyone and present the 2020 Great Pumpkin Festival Royalty.

Weigh-Off of Pumpkins and Other Vegetables – Register your pumpkins, squash, watermelons, and other vegetables from 8 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. at the Sandy’s Diner building. Entry fee $10. The actual weigh-off will take place between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Allardt is an official GPC weigh-off site.
• Pumpkins - First place - $1000 (2nd – 10th place – $400, $300, $200, $100, $50, $25)
• Watermelons - First place - $600 (2nd – 5th place – $300, $200, $100, $50)
• Green Squash - First place - $400 (2nd – 5th place – $300, $200, $100, $50)
• Prettiest Pumpkin - $100 


The big pumpkin winner must ride in the parade or be disqualified. See rules and regulations at www.allardtpumpkinfestival.com or the Allardt Pumpkin Festival Facebook page. Dwight Dickson will serve as master of ceremonies. John Gunter with the UT Extension Service will serve as the Site Coordinator. Sponsors include Dr. Dilip Joshi, Clarkrange Drug Center, Quality Family of Companies, Fentress County Farm Bureau, Representative John Mark Windle, and Senator Ken Yager.

Clyde and Zelia Stephens Memorial Auto Show
Registration Saturday from 8 a.m. – noon Central Time at the 4-Way Stop in Allardt. $10 registration fee. ALL cars and trucks welcome!
• Awards to Top 25. Dash plaques to the first 300 entries.
• Gift Cards and Car Wash Bucket giveaways.
• Awards and prizes start at 2:00 p.m. day of show registration only.
• Swap meet spaces (auto related items only) 15’ x 20’ - $25.
• Event chairman: Stephen Williams, 931-265-3264.
• Sponsored by O’Reilly Auto Parts

Motorcycle Show
Registration Saturday from 8 a.m. – noon Central Time at Allardt Land Company. $10 registration fee. ALL motorcycles welcome!
• Awards and Prize giveaways at Auto Show at 2:00 pm
• Day of show registration only
• Event chairman – J.J. Johnson, 931-397-0678.
• Sponsored by Scott and Mary Alice Edwards and Top of the Hill Properties.

Pumpkin Festival Parade - 3 p.m. – The parade is always a highlight of the day and one of the largest parades of the year for Fentress County. As usual, parade entries will line up on the Baseline Road. To line up, follow Highway 52 E from Allardt past the orange water tower to the Les Franklin Road. Turn left at the Les Franklin Road. Then enter the Baseline Road from the Les Franklin Road only. The deadline for entries is noon Thursday, October 1. Call Ashley Bilbrey at 397-0300 to register and for additional information.

Entertainment and On Stage Schedule – Allardt City Hall. William Bilbrey, entertainment chairman.
• 10:00 am – Festival Royalty Introduction
• 12:00 – 1:00 pm –Jake Hoot, Winner Season 17 NBC’s show “The Voice”
• 1:30 – 2:30 pm – Ashley Hepperly

Crafts and Food Vendors - Bruno Gernt Park and directly behind the park at the FCBE Alternative School, all day. The Vendor Park will have additional space between vendors and proposed one-way routing for foot traffic. All vendors set up anywhere in Allardt and who have not paid the fee are asked to purchase a vendor's permit for $25 at Allardt City Hall and keep it at their site during the festival. The permit verifies that vendors have helped support the festival by their contribution toward festival expenses. The vendor park is sponsored by Micro Metals and Top of the Hill Properties. Cathy Jeffers, event chairman.

Not happening this year, but we hope to add back these events for next year’s 2021 Allardt Great Pumpkin Festival and Weigh-off: Pumpkin Festival Beauty Pageant, Children’s Costume Contest, Tractor Show, Pumpkin Pie and Pumpkin Roll Contest, Pooch Parade. Fireworks are canceled indefinitely.

~ Free Parking and Free Admission ~

Weigh-off and Festival Event Sponsors and Contributors:
Allardt Real Estate Association, LLC, City of Allardt, City of Jamestown, Clarkrange Drug Center, Dave Kirk Automotive, Dilip Joshi, M.D., Fentress County Ambulance Service, Fentress County Chamber of Commerce, Fentress County EMA, Fentress County Farm Bureau, Fentress County Farmers Coop, Fentress County Soil Conservation District, Fentress Courier, Fentress County Sheriff’s Department, First Volunteer Bank, Hall Family Pharmacy, Jimtown Florist, Micro Metals Inc., Moody’s Automotive, O’Reilly Auto Parts, One Bank, Quality Family of Companies, Representative John Mark Windle, Senator Ken Yager, TDOT, Top of the Hill Properties, Twin Lakes Telephone Coop, Union Bank, and UT Extension Service.



20200926

Enter the Parade

 

⭐️⭐️⭐️ We encourage all auto and motorcycle entries on festival day, Saturday, Oct. 3 to get in the 3 p.m. parade. So many festival goers never get up to the auto and cycle shows. We’d like to see your entries. ⭐️Also we encourage all large vegetable entries to join the parade as well, regardless of your placement in the weigh-off. ⭐️All those mentioned above can just enter the parade from Gum Springs Road as it comes down Hwy 52 toward the center of Allardt. 🎃

20200924

Jake Hoot will perform

 

Jake Hoot, Winner Season 17 NBC’s show “The Voice,” will headline the entertainment with a concert on stage at Allardt City Hall from 12 noon to 1 p.m.

20200923

The Great Pumpkin will make his appearance at the 29th Annual Allardt Great Pumpkin Festival and Weigh-off Oct. 3

 It’s pumpkin time in Tennessee. And yes, the great pumpkin will make his appearance once again at the 2020 Allardt Great Pumpkin Festival and Weigh-off on Saturday, Oct. 3.

To promote safety, we will be following the June 2020 Tennessee Pledge – Guidelines for Attractions, Large Venues, & Large Community Events – providing hand sanitizer stations, spacing vendors for social distancing, and recommending face masks as appropriate. 
 
Many other weigh-off events around the nation have been canceled for this year, and growers are seeking opportunities to show off their giant pumpkins, green squash, and watermelons for world record consideration. We are anticipating some record-breaking entries.
 
Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama state records have been broken in previous years at the Allardt GPC weigh-off for both giant pumpkins and green squash. Massive watermelons brought by world record holder Chris Kent of Sevierville have been weighed in Allardt as well. 
 
The 2019 big pumpkin winner was Jason Terry of Oneida with his 1,491-pound entry. Spencer Glasgow of Bessemer, AL, won the 2019 watermelon weigh-off with a 321 lb. entry that broke the Alabama state record. John Brooks of Ronda, NC, won first place in his category with a 625 lb. green squash. 
 
Prizes of $1000, $600, and $400 will go to the top pumpkin, watermelon, and green squash respectively, with lesser amount for 2nd through 5th place winners. An assortment of corn stalks, potatoes, tomatoes, sunflowers and other entries will compete for recognition also.
 
The weigh-off at the Sandy’s Diner building is set for 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. (Central Time). Register your entries there from 8 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. John Gunter, Fentress County UT Agriculture Agent, is site coordinator, and Dwight Dixon, USDA Fentress County Soil Conservation District Conservationist, will again serve as master of ceremonies. Sponsors include Dr. Dilip Joshi, Clarkrange Drug Center and Quality Family of Companies.
 
Festival goers can enjoy a spectacular region-wide Clyde and Zelia Stephens Memorial Auto Show, plus a Motorcycle Show, food and craft vendors in Bruno Gernt Park, live entertainment on-stage at City Hall, a Pumpkin Run at 7 a.m., and a parade at 3 p.m. (Central). The Allardt Fire Hall will be serving barbecue as usual at lunch time.
 
Pumpkin Festival Chairman Cathy Jeffers will officially open the festival at 10 a.m. (Central) at Allardt City Hall with introductions of the 2020 Festival Royalty.
 
Jake Hoot, Winner Season 17 NBC’s show “The Voice,” will headline the entertainment with a concert on stage at Allardt City Hall from 12 noon to 1 p.m. He will be followed by Ashley Hepperly from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. William Bilbrey (Millenium Sound) is entertainment coordinator.
 
Stephen Williams spearheads the Clyde and Zelia Stephens Memorial Auto Show, sponsored by O’Reilly Auto Parts. Register your entry for $10 from 8 a.m. until noon at the 4-way stop in Allardt. Entries can expect lots of prizes, awards, and cash giveaways. The auto show is sponsored by O’Reilly Auto Parts.
The Motorcycle Show, coordinated by Jeremy Blevins and sponsored by Scott and Mary Alice Edwards and Top of the Hill Properties, will also present trophies and prizes. Thanks to the sponsor, NO Entry Fee for cycles this year. Presentations of awards for both shows will take place at 2 p.m.
 
Registration for the Pumpkin Run begins at 7 a.m. to 7:45 a.m. Oct. 3 at Allardt School. Line-up is 7:45 to 8 a.m. with start time at 8 a.m. Categories of entry are 10K run, 5K run, 3K, and 1 mile Fun Run. Entry fee is $15 for the 10k, 5K, and 3k, ($40 for family 3+ entries) and $10 for the 1 mile Fun Run. The event is sponsored by Hall Family Pharmacy to benefit the Pat Summitt Foundation. Entry forms are available at Hall Family Pharmacy. Participants can register the morning of the run.
 
The Pumpkin Festival Parade, set for 3 p.m. (Central) is always a highlight of the day and one of the largest parades of the year for Fentress County. The deadline for entries is noon Thursday, October 1. Call Ashley Bilbrey at 397-0300 to register and for additional information. 
 
Your favorite crafts and food vendors will be set up in Bruno Gernt Park and directly behind the park at the FCBE Alternative School, all day. The Vendor Park will have additional space between vendors and proposed one-way routing for foot traffic. All vendors set up anywhere in Allardt and who have not paid the fee are asked to purchase a vendor's permit for $25 at Allardt City Hall and keep it at their site during the festival. The permit verifies that vendors have helped support the festival by their contribution toward festival expenses. The vendor park is sponsored by Micro Metals and Top of the Hill Properties. Cathy Jeffers is vendor park chairman. 
 
Several regular events from past festivals have been cut this year, but will be restored in 2021. These include Pumpkin Festival Beauty Pageants, Children's Costume Contest, Pooch Parade, Antique Tractor Show, and Homemade Pumpkin Pie and Pumpkin Roll Contest. These event chairmen and volunteers decided it would be too difficult to follow the Tennessee safety guidelines for their specific workers and spectators. 
 
The Fireworks display has been permanently eliminated from the line-up because of the danger of fire during dry spells and stress on livestock and other animals in the area.
 
We ask all those attending to take recommended precautions for health and safety, including social distancing (staying six feet apart and following one-way routing for foot traffic), regular use of hand sanitizer, and face masks in crowded areas. And if you have doubts about being in large outdoor crowds during this time, please skip this year and rejoin us in 2021.
 
Weigh-off and Festival Event Sponsors and Contributors:
Allardt Real Estate Association, LLC, City of Allardt, City of Jamestown, Clarkrange Drug Center, Dilip Joshi, M.D., Fentress County Farm Bureau, Fentress County Soil Conservation District, Fentress County Chamber of Commerce, Fentress Courier, First Volunteer Bank, Hall Family Pharmacy, Jimtown Florist, Micro Metals Inc., Moody’s Automotive, O’Reilly Auto Parts, One Bank, Quality Family of Companies, Representative John Mark Windle, Senator Ken Yager, Top of the Hill Properties, Union Bank, and UT Extension Service.

20200910

Latest Update and Events Schedule for Saturday, Oct. 3rd Allardt Great Pumpkin Festival and Weigh-off

 

Allardt's 29th Annual Great Pumpkin Festival and Weigh-off is set for Saturday, October 3. In a sincere attempt to follow the June 2020 Tennessee Pledge – Guidelines for Attractions, Large Venues, & Large Community Events – adjustments have been made to the program of events for this year only.
 
Pumpkin Run- Registration 7 a.m. to 7:45 a.m. Oct. 3 at Allardt School. Line-up 7:45 to 8 a.m., and start time at 8 a.m. Categories of entry are 10K run, 5K run, 3K, and 1 mile Fun Run. Entry fee is $15 for the 10k, 5K, and 3k, ($40 for family 3+ entries) and $10 for the 1 mile Fun Run. Sponsored by Hall Family Pharmacy to benefit the Pat Summitt Foundation. Entry forms available at Hall Family Pharmacy. Register the morning of the run or online at https://greatpumpkinfestivalpumpkinrun.itsyourrace.com/event.aspx?id=13570 .
 
 
Festival Kick-off Ceremonies –10 a.m. at Allardt City Hall. Chairman Cathy Jeffers will welcome everyone and present the 2020 Great Pumpkin Festival Royalty.
 
Weigh-Off of Pumpkins and Other Vegetables – Register your pumpkins, squash, watermelons, and other vegetables from 8 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. at the Sandy’s Diner building. Entry fee $10. The actual weigh-off will take place between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Allardt is an official GPC weigh-off site.
  • Pumpkins - First place - $1000 (2nd – 10th place – $400, $300, $200, $100, $50, $25)
  • Watermelons - First place - $600 (2nd – 5th place – $300, $200, $100, $50)
  • Green Squash - First place - $400 (2nd – 5th place – $300, $200, $100, $50)
  • Prettiest Pumpkin - $100
The big pumpkin winner must ride in the parade or be disqualified. See rules and regulations at www.allardtpumpkinfestival.com. Dwight Dickson will serve as master of ceremonies. John Gunter with the UT Extension Service will serve as the Site Coordinator. Sponsors include Dr. Dilip Joshi, Clarkrange Drug Center, and Quality Family of Companies.
 
Clyde and Zelia Stephens Memorial Auto Show
Registration Saturday from 8 a.m. – noon Central Time at the 4-Way Stop in Allardt. $10 registration fee. ALL cars and trucks welcome!
  • Awards to Top 25. Dash plaques to the first 300 entries.
  • Gift Cards and Car Wash Bucket giveaways.
  • Awards and prizes start at 2:00 p.m. day of show registration only.
  • Swap meet spaces (auto related items only) 15’ x 20’ - $25.
  • Event chairman: Stephen Williams, 931-265-3264.
  • Sponsored by O’Reilly Auto Parts
Motorcycle Show
Registration Saturday from 8 a.m. – noon Central Time at Allardt Land Company. $10 registration fee. ALL motorcycles welcome!
  • Awards and Prize giveaways at Auto Show at 2:00 pm
  • Day of show registration only
  • Event chairman – J.J. Johnson, 931-397-0678.
  • Sponsored by Scott and Mary Alice Edwards and Top of the Hill Properties.
Pumpkin Festival Parade - 3 p.m. – The parade is always a highlight of the day and one of the largest parades of the year for Fentress County. As usual, parade entries will line up on the Baseline Road. To line up, follow Highway 52 E from Allardt past the orange water tower to the Les Franklin Road. Turn left at the Les Franklin Road. Then enter the Baseline Road from the Les Franklin Road only. The deadline for entries is noon Thursday, October 3. Call Ashley Bilbrey at 397-0300 to register and for additional information.
 
Entertainment and On Stage Schedule – Allardt City Hall. William Bilbrey, entertainment chairman.
  • 10:00 am – Festival Royalty Introduction
  • 12:00 – 1:00 pm – Jake Hoot, Winner Season 17 NBC’s show “The Voice”
  • 1:30 – 2:30 pm – Ashley Hepperly
Crafts and Food Vendors - Bruno Gernt Park and directly behind the park at the FCBE Alternative School, all day. The Vendor Park will have additional space between vendors and proposed one-way routing for foot traffic. All vendors set up anywhere in Allardt and who have not paid the fee are asked to purchase a vendor's permit for $25 at Allardt City Hall and keep it at their site during the festival. The permit verifies that vendors have helped support the festival by their contribution toward festival expenses. The vendor park is sponsored by Micro Metals and Top of the Hill Properties. Cathy Jeffers, event chairman.
 
While it was very difficult to postpone any of the treasured events, some event chairmen and volunteers reviewed the guidelines in respect to their specific events and determined it would be difficult to follow the guidelines for their specific workers and spectators.
 
The events that will be postponed until next year include: Beauty Pageants, Children's Costume Contest, Pooch Parade, Antique Tractor Show, and Homemade Pumpkin Pie and Pumpkin Roll Contest. The Fireworks display has been eliminated from the line-up due to periodic weather concerns and effects on the livestock in close proximity to the event.
 
We encourage attendees to follow all safety guidelines for large events, including social distancing, use of hand sanitizers, and wearing masks when appropriate. While many people are encouraged to have a family event to enjoy during these stressful times, others may still be apprehensive to be in large crowds. As always, these events will be documented by WDEB Radio Station and made available for later viewing. So we encourage those who are not completely comfortable with socializing at this time to stay home and stay safe.
 
~ Free Parking and Free Admission ~
 
Weigh-off and Festival Event Sponsors and Contributors:
Allardt Land Company, City of Allardt, City of Jamestown, Clarkrange Drug Center, Conditioned Heating & Cooling, Dave Kirk Automotive, Dilip Joshi, M.D., Fentress County Farm Bureau, Fentress County Solid Waste, Fentress County Soil Conservation District, Fentress County Chamber of Commerce, Fentress Courier, First Volunteer Bank, Hall Family Pharmacy, Micro Metals Inc., Moody’s Automotive, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Quality Private Care, R&T Trophies, Representative John Mark Windle, Senator Ken Yager, Top of the Hill Properties, Union Bank, and UT Extension Service, Jimtown Florist, and Quality Family of Companies.

20200731

July 31, 2020 Update for 2020 Allardt Pumpkin Festival

July 31, 2020

Great News! There will be an Allardt Pumpkin Festival and Weigh-off on Saturday, October 3, 2020.
We will be following the June 2020 Tennessee Pledge – Guidelines for Attractions, Large Venues, & Large Community Events

The Weigh-off itself is a go, according to the Site Coordinator John Gunter, with the UT Agriculture Office. Some growers who have never been to the Allardt event are planning to compete here due to closures at other weigh-off sites.

The Clyde and Zelia Stephens Memorial Auto Show and Cycle Show events are expected to see a large turn out because of cancelled shows throughout the summer season.
Jake Hoot will appear on stage at City Hall as scheduled. Seating will be spread out to provide distance between household groups.

These traditional events will be featured as usual –
Parade
Pumpkin Run

Vendor Park – We will expand the space to include the area behind the Bruno Gernt Park across Portland Avenue in front of the Fentress County Board of Education Alternative School. This was previously used for parking. The Vendor Park will have additional space between vendors and proposed one-way routing for foot traffic.

Beauty Pageants will NOT be held this year due to indoor restrictions and the lack of an appropriate outside venue that would accommodate the usual number of entrants and spectators with shelter from the weather.

The Costume Contest will also be put on hold for one year with Smart Bank planning to gear back up for the 2021 Festival.

The Tractor Show will be canceled this year to protect the mostly older participants in this event.

The Pooch Parade will also be canceled, but we hope to try it again in 2021.

Fireworks will be removed from the event list indefinitely in response to the many requests from pet owners in the area.

We encourage all attendees to follow all safety guidelines for large events, including social distancing, use of hand sanitizers, and masks when appropriate.

We will attempt to provide as much social distancing as possible including some one-way routing for foot traffic, additional spaces between entries and vendor locations, and sanitation stations throughout the area.

We will provide updates well before the event with times and schedules.