Thursday, October 15, 2009

The giant pumpkin of Circleville

by Danielle Purcell

Lindsey’s Bakery Caters to Circleville Pumpkin Show with Monster-Sized Pie

Cartoon pumpkin stickers decorate shop windows in downtown Circleville, proclaiming the arrival of the town’s annual Pumpkin Show. For over one hundred years, Circleville residents have honored these rotund squashes with parades, pageants and contests. The city rejoices for several days, from October 21st to 24th, in celebration of the pumpkin. Only one local shop, Lindsey’s Bakery, has the bravado to prepare a monstrous pumpkin pie.

Mr. and Mrs. Lindsey, the original owners, maintained the store for “a good long time” before leaving their legacy to their daughter. Now, Grandma Katie Miller, bustles about the back half of the store.

A framed letter Grandma Katie received from Bob Dole hangs on the right wall. The Lindseys watch from their frame on the left. A gigantic tray sits atop its pumpkin throne. Its diameter exceeds ten feet. Grandma Katie’s nephew and employee Chad Kushmer says it’s “the small one.” Kushmer says he will not aid in preparation of the beastly pastry.

“If I tried to help at all, I’d mess it up,” he said. “I’ll leave it to the professionals.”

The actual tray for the famed pie is extremely large. Think fourteen feet in diameter large. A sign above the tray displays the famed recipe for the gigantic pie, which calls for a whopping 96 pounds of pumpkin guts for its filling. Professionals, indeed.

The shop also offers an array of pumpkin-based delights, including donuts, cookies and pies, which tempt customers in neatly-iced rows beneath the glass. Kushmer says the pumpkin donuts are exceptional, the “big season seller.”

Ironically, after the famed pumpkin pie is prepared and displayed, no one enjoys the pie. Lindsey’s Bakery employees agree that too many customers have touched it. The pie’s remains are donated to local farmers and fed to pigs.

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