Video: In search of sweet, ripe watermelons and Hermiston, Oregon!
Aug 11, 2023, 5:31 PM
It’s peak watermelon season, and you might have seen those stickers on certain melons at your local grocery store that say, “Grown in Hermiston, Oregon.” And then, you might have wondered, ‘Where is Hermiston, exactly?’
A ripe Hermiston watermelon is a tasty and refreshing summertime Pacific Northwest delight. Choosing a ripe watermelon involves holding it in one hand, then tapping or even vigorously rapping on its shell with the knuckles of your other hand as if knocking on a door. Ripe specimens almost ring like a bell or a well-made wooden door; less desirable specimens give off something of a mushy or dull thump.
To visit Hermiston from the Seattle area requires driving about 250 miles. If it’s too short notice to make it this weekend to the Umatilla County Fair, next weekend – on Saturday, August 19 – downtown Hermiston will host the annual MelonFest, with its famous Watermelon Bathtub Races, Watermelon Seed Spitting Contest and the ever-popular Watermelon Costume Contest.
Tapping on watermelons is not required in order to attend either event.
You can hear Feliks Banel every Wednesday and Friday morning on Seattle’s Morning News with Dave Ross and Colleen O’Brien.
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