St. Clair County bike trail nears completion at the start of pumpkin season

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ST. CLAIR COUNTY, Ill. – The beginning of fall means it’s pumpkin season! The crop has been growing for about three months and, of course, the weather has a huge influence on pumpkins.

Rain is beneficial to the crop during the growing season, which allows the crop to be planted on time and grow to a healthy size. Rain can be both good and bad. the pumpkins can get too wet causing pumpkins to get disease or decay but luckily, this year the rain did more good than bad.

“With the rain, it just helped them grow really big. So, we’ve got, as you can see, lots of pumpkins out here and they are large, and beautiful and ready to go,” said Chris Eckert, president of Eckert’s Inc. “Really hot days this time of the year can cause some sun burning on pumpkins especially as the foliage starts to deteriorate and fold down. There’s not that shade protecting the pumpkin any longer. October’s next week, so we are hoping we get down to that 60- and 70-degree weather.”

It’s a busy time of year as the bridge and trail project is ongoing across Green Mount Road. St. Clair County is in phase two of the project, which was expected to be completed at the beginning of November. But, like the pumpkins, the project has been influenced by the weather. It’s not delayed by much, as they hope to wrap up by mid-November. The bridge is fully installed. They are laying the deck on the bridge next week.

The phase two portion of the trail is 1.6 miles. It connects to the already completed 3.3-mile trail. this new portion heads north towards the orchard subdivision.

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