On Nov. 6, the final shots of the 26th annual Punkin Chunkin World Championship were fired. The sky over Sussex County, Del., was once again filled with airborne produce and the cheers of loyal fans. By the end of the day, the unofficial results were released. The Second Amendment Too’s shot of 4,329 feet had secured its first place victory in the Adult Air category … and by just 4 feet.
Punkin Chunkin is the premier event for finding out who can shoot a pumpkin the farthest and the huge cannons powered by compressed air and built by engineering experts shoot the "punkins" far indeed. In addition to the competition, the event hosts a pumpkin cooking contest, chili cook-off and beauty contest. Best of all, the majority of Punkin Chunkin proceeds go to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, Childhelp, an organization working to end child abuse, and a variety of other charities.
Ray Tolson, owner of the Second Amendment Too cannon, is a seasoned veteran of America’s favorite pumpkin hurling competition. Tolson was a key team member for the now retired Second Amendment launcher. He shared in several first and second place wins with the Second Amendment before building his own 30,000-lb. air cannon.
"It’s all highway legal," Tolson remarked about the cannon’s massive size. "Barely, but legal."
Tolson works for Kaeser Compressors, Inc. as their senior national service engineer. His extensive knowledge of machinery and compressed air aid his decisions for making adjustments to the Second Amendment Too. His cannon is powered with air from a Kaeser Mobilair M122 portable compressor, as well as a reciprocating booster compressor to increase the pressure. The M122 alone delivers 400 cfm at 100 psi, which is appropriate for pavement breaking, so the force is more than enough to send the average pumpkin flying.
Discovery and the Science Channel will simultaneously broadcast Punkin Chunkin highlights on Thanksgiving evening at 8 p.m. EST.