Just when you think you’ve seen everything, you realize you’ve been missing the West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta since 2004. Exactly what it sounds like, this annual October series of races consists of paddlers piloting a gaggle of ginormous gourds through a water course on the lake at Tualatin Commons. The event kicks off with a giant pumpkin parade and weigh-off, followed by a full day of costumed contestants plying the shallow lake in 1,000-pound pumpkin boats.
On dry land, a costume contest, live music, face painting, pumpkin carving, pie eating contest and pumpkin golf will keep the laughs coming at this free, family-friendly event. Located just 13 miles (21 km) southwest of downtown Portland, Tualatin is a great starting point for an autumn adventure in the Willamette Valley, complete with foliage and farm stands — but the most eye-popping sight of the day will definitely be those paddling pumpkins.