Punkin Chunk CANCELLED.

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Punkin Chunk CANCELLED.

Postby Walker » Sat Oct 04, 2014 7:18 am

The 2014 World Championship of Punkin' Chunkin" has officially been cancelled.
I am unable as yet to find a reason for their decision but there is some talk about some volunteer decision regarding the down range chasers being unsafe in the way they handle their 4-wheelers. Does that make sense to anyone?

The rumor is that all WCPC/PCA dues will be refunded.
That does not account for all the tickets, pit passes, team registrations, vender fees, whatever & etc.
These boys are in a heap of trouble.

As for me, I'm aligning myself with the Texas State Chunk which plans to launch sometime in Spring 2015.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/320785618034475/

Good chunking and may God bless.
Walker
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Re: Punkin Chunk CANCELLED.

Postby madmattd » Tue Oct 07, 2014 7:32 pm

Walker wrote:The 2014 World Championship of Punkin' Chunkin" has officially been cancelled.
I am unable as yet to find a reason for their decision but there is some talk about some volunteer decision regarding the down range chasers being unsafe in the way they handle their 4-wheelers. Does that make sense to anyone?

The rumor is that all WCPC/PCA dues will be refunded.
That does not account for all the tickets, pit passes, team registrations, vender fees, whatever & etc.
These boys are in a heap of trouble.

As for me, I'm aligning myself with the Texas State Chunk which plans to launch sometime in Spring 2015.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/320785618034475/

Good chunking and may God bless.


Pit Passes ARE WCPCA dues and are being refunded to those that ask (and you lose the ability to vote for 2015, which for those that can't make the meetings and aren't captains, isn't a loss).

Team registrations are also being refunded upon request, but those teams are then not going to be considered as "renewals" for next year, but must sign up with the new team system that typically begins on June 1. I have mixed feelings on that decision and hope that the board addresses this.

All spectator tickets are/already have been refunded. The bigger issue is that many are still on the hook for non-refundable airfare tickets (or at least are out the insane cancellation fees), now have time off from work that they cannot change around, etc etc. The last-minute cancellation wasn't the best move by the WCPCA, especially when so many teams expected this decision at least a month or two earlier. Lately things seemed to be getting in place, but apparently that was at least partly a fake facade as well.

As for the decision to cancel, we are waiting for a more complete story from the WCPCA, but it boiled down to a lack of time to move the massive event to a new site with far more regulation in a very short time frame. The reason we had to move had to do with the Dan Fair (head spotter) accident a couple years ago, as he filed a lawsuit against the WCPCA and the landowner, and thus the landowner had to ask us to not come back. He may still lose his farm from this incident, which is not right. Finding a new field in Delaware, which does not have a state law putting a cap on liability, is now very hard as no landowner wants to risk being sued. Dover Speedway was an answer, though it meant that the event had to be split up, which already wasn't going over well with many teams and most spectators. The ultimate answer may be to move the event out of Delaware and to a state that protects landowners, but apparently they wanted to still try to keep the event in Delaware (understandably, but it appears to be no longer practical). What happens next will be very critical to the future of the WCPCA.
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Re: Punkin Chunk CANCELLED.

Postby HoosickTony » Mon Nov 03, 2014 3:03 pm

How sad that a lawsuit closed down such a wonderful event. My students were very pumped to try to get a machine entered into the event this year, but there was so much uncertainty that we didn't even build the machine this past summer. I hope that they will have an event next year (we are building a new machine, a ballista this time, over the winter), and I hope that someone will reply to us on the date when new groups can try to register (nobody contacted me or responded to emails until I made it over to the facebook page and asked for clarification two weeks after the first day of official registration).

Fingers crossed.
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Re: Punkin Chunk CANCELLED.

Postby madmattd » Mon Nov 03, 2014 7:28 pm

HoosickTony wrote: and I hope that someone will reply to us on the date when new groups can try to register (nobody contacted me or responded to emails until I made it over to the facebook page and asked for clarification two weeks after the first day of official registration).


Traditionally, new teams' signups open on June 1 (returning teams are guaranteed a spot if they get their team registered before this date). The last few years, the few open spots for new teams have filled up in a minute or less (not kidding). This year, returning teams didn't even get to register until August and new teams were September 1 due to the fact that we didn't have a field in place until July. I'm sorry to hear that no one could bother to answer your questions about signups, but sadly that was the theme of this year, even for those of us returning chunkers. I know I couldn't get any answers on a few boiler-plate questions I had...

The Association President, John Huber, has resigned. Who steps up, what changes may or may not happen, and what happens to this event moving forward, are all rather uncertain right now. But there are a lot of other smaller chunks that benefited greatly from this cancellation, as many of them had multiple teams that would have ordinarily only gone to Delaware show up and entertain the crowds. That may be another option to think about as a fall-back or even a second opportunity depending on your location.

HoosickTony, we are looking forward to hearing about your creation! Keep us posted on progress if you like!
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Re: Punkin Chunk CANCELLED.

Postby BobP » Mon Nov 03, 2014 8:06 pm

I strongly suspect that the WCPC as we knew it is dead. Something will rise from the ashes to take its place as there are so many participants out there, but it won't be the old PCA. Too much baggage. Perhaps there will be separate events for the cannons and mechanicals. I'd hope so. Cannons blow.

I've seen some comments elsewhere describing the plaintif in the lawsuit as "greedy". He's paralyzed. There's no doubt it's partly, maybe even largely, his fault but the PCA has to bear some responsibility. Ever since the Science Channel started showing the event, I've been appalled by the unsafe operation of ATV's by the chasers. The accident was inevitable.

As for Huber, good riddance. There was a LONG discussion on the old, old, old CatMess when the PCA obtained a trademark on the term "Punkin Chunkin". He thought that gave the PCA authority to regulate all hurling of vegetables, which was not just wrong, but ridiculously wrong. And he wouldn't back down.
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