For several weeks, people in the Waitaki have been quietly cultivating their entries in the Oamaru Farmers' Market "Spud in a Bucket" competition.
On Sunday, the proof will definitely be in the pudding when an expected 80 entries, including "Dick-Tata" grown and nurtured by the Mayor and Mayoress of Waitaki, will face the judging panel.
The Oamaru Mail was given a sneak preview of the mighty spud, resplendent in his Christmas decorations, and standing tall at about 167cm. Mayor Familton claimed his potato received no special treatment apart from some good Waitaki soil, a few kind words from the mayor, some general purpose fertiliser and a sheltered space.
"We originally had two spuds in a bucket, but the other one failed to grow, so that's why this one is called 'Dick Tata' as he eliminated the competition," he said.
The Spud in a Bucket entries will weigh in at 9.30am on Sunday at the market.
Oamaru Farmers' Market manager Deidre Nuttall said Sunday would be a fantastic day with large numbers of people expected to attend.
"Fresh summer fruits and vegetables, cakes, breads and fish, plus last-minute Christmas gifts, will all be available and vendors are expecting big crowds as they fill last-minute orders and gift lists," she said.
"The celebrations will also include Santa and Beedle the Clown who will arrive by horse and cart at 11am to entertain the children while their parents shop and the chance to celebrate 150 years to the day since the Oamaru Town Board was first convened."