Pumpkin launchers hope to set world record in Utah

Pumpkin launchers hope to set world record in Utah

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- A team that specializes in shooting pumpkins from a giant air cannon is coming to southern Utah hoping the high elevation and thin air will help them set a world record.

The team's 90-foot, compressed-air cannon arrived in Moab on Tuesday. Later this week, they're hoping to launch a 10-pound pumpkin more than 5,000 feet.

The Guinness World Record for "punkin chunkin," as the event is often called, is 4,491 feet, set in Illinois in 1998.

The outfit, known as the "Big 10 Inch Team," is from Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey. They were world champions in 1999 and 2007.

They hope to set the record at the Youth Garden Project's annual Pumpkin Chuckin Festival on Halloween.

A team leader says pumpkins shot from the cannon can reach speeds approaching 700 mph.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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