Mines News

Release Date Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Teams Toss Produce in Annual Punkin Chunkin Competition

The annual Punkin Chunkin competition includes college and high school teams who build pumpkin launching catapults and trebuchets to compete for distance and accuracy.  

RAPID CITY, SD (Sept. 25, 2019) – Budding scientists and engineers from the South Dakota School of Mines & Technology and one area high school will put their skills to the test during two public displays of ingenuity at the annual Punkin Chunkin contest Saturday, Sept. 28, at Memorial Park.


Teams have designed trebuchets, or catapults, that will launch pumpkins overhead in a competition for the most accurate and farthest toss.


The public is invited to watch the popular event during two separate competition times – 10 a.m. and 1 p.m., at Memorial Park in downtown Rapid City. All teams will compete in the first time slot and the top three during the 1 p.m. slot. The annual contest is sponsored by RESPEC and is part of the Great Downtown Pumpkin Festival.


SD Mines teams include representatives from the Society of Physics Students (SPS) and individual teams from the university’s Center of Excellence for Advanced Multidisciplinary Projects (CAMP), including Formula, Steel Bridge, ChemE Car, Baja and Robotics. The Mines Clean Snowmobile team will score during the competition and the Hardrocker Human Powered Vehicle Team will serve as safety officers. A team from Rapid City Central High School will also compete.


The public is encouraged to arrive early to find a spot, as this is traditionally a large community event.


The Society of Physics Students is a professional association that includes students and their advisers. Membership, through collegiate chapters, is open to anyone interested in physics. The SD Mines SPS chapter is active in several community events annually.


CAMP is a unique nationally-recognized program that brings together students, faculty and industry leaders to partner on hands-on real-world projects. Students participating in CAMP can be part of a team preparing for national competition by building such things as alternative fuel vehicles, a concrete canoe, an unmanned aerial vehicle, a mini Indy or Baja car, or working on projects involving robotics or hydrogen fuel cells.


About South Dakota Mines  

Founded in 1885, South Dakota Mines is one of the nation’s leading engineering, science and technology universities. South Dakota Mines offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees and a best-in-class education at an affordable price. The university enrolls 2,475 students with an average class size of 24. The South Dakota Mines placement rate for graduates is 97 percent, with an average starting salary of more than $66,150. For these reasons College Factual ranks South Dakota Mines, the #1 Engineering School for Return on Investment. Find us online at www.sdsmt.edu and on FacebookTwitter, LinkedInInstagram and Snapchat.

Contact: Lynn Taylor Rick, (605) 394-2554, Lynn.TaylorRick@sdsmt.edu

Upcoming Events

Saturday, Sep. 18, 2021 - Saturday, Sep. 25, 2021
7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Various Locations
Sunday, Sep. 19, 2021
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March Dake Plaza
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Tuesday, Sep. 21, 2021
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