A Nebraska man celebrated his 60th birthday in style last weekend with a 38-mile trip down the Missouri River in an 846-pound carved pumpkin called “Berta,” which he’d grown for 10 years while making history by a Guinness World Record to crush.
Duane Hansen, now 60, set out around 7:30 a.m. Saturday to paddle the Missouri River from Bellevue to Nebraska City, six years after former record-holder Rick Swenson built a pumpkin boat to complete a 40-mile trip up the Red River. from Grand Forks, North Dakota to Breckenridge, Minnesota in 2016.
The trip along the state’s eastern Midwestern border with Iowa took Hansen, a Syracuse native of Nebraska, about six hours to complete. He sat up and paddled on a cooler he’d kept in the pumpkin throughout his journey.
‘Mr. Hansen has lived in Nebraska for a long time and enjoys growing large pumpkins, gourds and other vegetables as a hobby,” Phil Davidson, City of Bellevue’s community relations coordinator, shared on Facebook.
“He got this idea when he visited Ohio and saw another person trying to set this record, which currently stands at about 30 miles. It seems like a unique, if not a little crazy, way to celebrate his 60th birthday, which was: [Friday].’
“He had his wife, family and friends on hand to help and document the effort. A few of them followed him in a boat in case of accidents,’ he added.
Duane Hansen, 60, broke a Guinness World Record Saturday for paddling a 38-mile trip on the Missouri River from Bellevue, Nebraska, to Nebraska City. The journey took him about six hours to complete
The new world record holder paddled a cooler placed inside an 846-pound pumpkin called ‘Berta’, which had a circumference of about 146 inches
Hansen reached the banks of the Missouri River at 7:30 a.m. Saturday and completed his journey around 6:30 p.m. ‘
Hansen had to wipe out a 38-mile segment of Nebraska’s eastern border with Iowa on Saturday to make history.
Hansen broke the Guinness World Record of 25.5 miles at 2:52 p.m. and continued to row 12 more miles, the Facebook post further revealed. Another 9pm update announced that Hansen had completed his expedition in the state, seven hours after he was officially named the new world record holder.
The Hansen family just posted in this thread that Duane Hansen arrived in Nebraska City just after 6:30pm! Congratulations, Duane for breaking the world record,” Davidson wrote. “We’re proud that you embarked on this record-breaking 40-mile journey in Bellevue, and it was fun to follow.”
It took Hansen about 11 hours to reach his final destination, when Davidson responded to a comment on Facebook via the City of Bellevue page that the 60-year-old felt “physically exhausted” from the journey, though he emphasized that he was “happy.” that he it.’
Hansen added that waves formed by passing boats and cruise ships sometimes made it harder for him to get his pumpkin through choppy water.
“You have to stop everything and just keep going and ride with those waves,” he said Nebraska . News Channel. “That was bad.”
The Guinness World Records has yet to acknowledge Hansen’s quest, however, as there have been no updates on the website regarding the challenge. To break a record, the organization needs a number of pieces of evidence, including photos, videos and witness statements.
Hansen’s family and friends, as well as the town of Bellevue, made sure that the 60-year-old’s efforts wouldn’t be in vain when they documented his excursion.
The Guinness World Records has yet to recognize Hanse’s achievement, but the man’s family and friends (pictured) have ensured that the evidence is documented, as required for the filing of a new record
People online and around the world also offered their support for Hansen, with one fan wishing him a ‘gourdspeed’ goodbye, while another commented on Facebook: ‘Congratulations, Duane! I welcome you from the UK’
“This is hilarious and inspiring. I hope someone films this! This is fantastic!’ shared by another individual.
‘Congratulations on your 60th, Duane! You made your ride in style. Really hope your legs can stand again! You’re done!’ someone else wrote.
“Cheers for Duane from Vancouver, Canada! Wow, wow!!! Go pumpkin, go!’ replied a fan from British Columbia.
Passionate about growing large produce, including his now world-famous pumpkin, Hansen had to carve out a circumference of about 146 inches to allow Berta to float on the Missouri River and to fit in.
He had also tied the large fruit over a mattress carried by his pickup truck to take it to the same river where Lewis and Clarke had started their expedition in 1904.
Hansen managed to get the 846-pound pumpkin onto the banks of the Missouri River by transporting it on a trailer and tying it to a mattress
The Missouri River is also the longest tributary of the Mississippi River in the United States and North America. It is formed by the confluence of three distinct streams: the Jefferson, Madison, and Gallatin rivers; and is 2,341 miles long.
When asked how he got the inspiration to come up with the idea, Hansen referred to a three-day seminar on growing giant pumpkins in Portland, Oregon, where he “met the lady who held the record.” At that point it was 25-something miles. And I asked her a lot of questions and then I decided I wanted to do this,’ he said.
When Hansen’s wife, Allyson, was asked what the future holds for her and her new world record holder husband, she told News Channel Nebraska, “I never know what’s going to happen.”
Hansen added: “I’m not going to do this again. I am done.’