The Greater Starkville Development Partnership and the Mississippi State University Idea Shop announced on Monday that this year’s upcoming Pumpkinaplooza will feature a new event, a pumpkin race – Starkville’s very first “Talladegourd 500.”

The Partnership in a release said area Starkville chamber businesses are invited to purchase kits and create pumpkins to race on Main Street during the annual festival, which is slated for Oct. 17 from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m.

Kits and all materials are $100 and will be made at The Idea Shop.

Along with the kit, businesses will support their favorite charity with portions of their proceeds going to a local charity of their choice.

Director of Outreach for the MSU College of Business Jeffrey Rupp said the Idea Shop has played an important role in building a strong town and gown relationship with the city.

“We wanted to do something fun and unique that could turn into an annual event and help local charities at the same time,” he said.

Longtime WCBI anchor Bill Gamel, now retired, will emcee the event.

“We are so excited to have this year’s Pumpkinpalooza feature the Talladegourd 500, and we are especially appreciative of the MSU College of Business & The Idea Shop for approaching us & turning this vision into a reality,” said Partnership Special Events & Projects Coordinator Paige Watson.

Watson referred to Pumpkinpalooza as a staple on the fall events calendar for the city, saying the Partnership is eager to add a new concept to refresh the occasion and showcase the same town and gown concept referenced by Rupp.

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