A Smashing Pumpkin

California farmer Lincoln Mettler carved out a new record this month when his 974-pound pumpkin took first prize at the 25th annual Half Moon Bay Great Pumpkin Weigh-Off.

His entry not only won the contest, but beat the old record by 99 pounds, reports CBS Station KPIX-TV in San Francisco.

It measured two feet, nine inches high and had a circumference of 13 feet, 7 inches.

Mettler's $5-a-pound winnings totaled $4,970. Mettler says he'll plow it all back into his pumpkin patch in Etonville, California.

Anyone who wants to challenge him for next year's title better get started now. Mettler, who credited his winner with "really good genetics," says it takes almost a year to grow it. In fact, he says, the challenge of raising a prizewinner is very similar to bringing up a child.