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Get ready for the 2019 Zucchini 500

The Memorial Centre Farmers’ Market Zucchini 500 races in action. Submitted photo.

Once a year, the Memorial Centre Farmers’ Market holds an event unlike any other in the city, and one meant to inspire fun, creativity, and good old fashioned silliness.

Of course, we’re talking about the Zucchini 500, the event where participants use a zucchini as the body of their race ‘cars’ and attach four wheels and whatever else they want to make their zucchini car their own.

The Zucchini 500 started in 2014 when those with the Memorial Centre Farmers’ Market heard of the idea through Farmers Markets Ontario. While the organizers locally admit that Zucchini 500 races take place at farmers markets throughout North America, they also admit that the one here in Kingston is unique in that the rules for the competition here were designed without looking into how other zucchini races are run. For those with the Memorial Centre Farmers’ Market, the key rule with their Zucchini 500 race is to have fun above all else.

When the event was held for the first time here in Kingston, it was an instant hit, and has only been made better as partners like Minotaur Games and Gifts, Loyalist Scouting and Kingston Community Credit Union (KCCU) came on board.  Minotaur hosts the official ‘building party’ the day before the event, where participants have the opportunity get a head start on the race by creating their ‘vegemobile’ in advance. Loyalist Scouting brings their KubKar track for the event, and KCCU does all the registration paperwork on the day of the event.

And best of all: the winner (who has the fastest car through a serious of heats) gets the incredible Zucchini 500 Champion Belt to wear for the remainder of their visit at the market… as well as the obvious bragging rights.

The Zucchini 500 Champion Belt. Event organizers add something new to the belt each year. Submitted photo.

Car kits and on-site registration will be available at Memorial Centre Farmers’ Market starting Sunday, Jul. 7, 2019.

The Zucchini Car Building Party at Minotaur Games and Gifts takes place on Saturday, Jul. 20, 2019 from 1 to 4 p.m. On site car making starts the following day at 9 a.m. at the Memorial Centre Farmers’ Market, and the races start at 11 a.m. Races have reached capacity in previous years, so it’s best to register early to ensure your spot! Read the Zucchini 500 Survival Kit for everything you need to know, and click here to register.

To get excited for all the silly action, watch this video to see what it’s all about:

Video via the Memorial Centre Farmers’ Market
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