CREST HILL, Ill. (CBS) -- Illinois is the pumpkin-growing capital of the nation, and farmers say it was an ideal season.
WBBM Newsradio's Mike Krauser reports Paul Siegel, owner of Siegel's Cottonwood Farm in Crest Hill, said this year's pumpkins were planted a little late, because of a wet spring, but a warm dry summer made for a good crop.
"A pumpkin crop is a vine crop, which means it's got a dense canopy, so it doesn't dry out like a cornstalk that stands up, or a soybean," he said. "So it stays moist much longer, and because of that moisture, diseases tend to be more prevalent."
Siegel's Cottonwood Farm allows visitors to go out in the field and pick their own pumpkins. This weekend, they will honor first responders and hospital personnel, with free admission for them and their families.
"As our way of saying thank you to the firemen, the policemen, the emergency room nurses, and anybody else that would consider themselves a first responder," Siegel said. "We all knew after 9/11 how important our first responders were."
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