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 Jason Dodson tests the ripeness of one of the watermelons by using the "thump" technique on a rainy afternoon.

Thump, feel, taste a ripe melon this weekend in Rush Springs

RUSH SPRINGS  How do you pick a ripe, sweet watermelon?

It seems like everyone has a favorite technique; but unlike turkey, there is no pop-up button showing when the melon is ripe.

Some believe in the "thump." If there is a hollow sound when it is thumped, the melon is at the peak of its ripeness.

For others it's the color, whether it's the yellow of the underbelly or a dull sheen to the melon as a whole.

Some swear that if the stem, which connects the watermelon to the vine, is brown and not green, then it is ready to eat.

According to a fact sheet distributed by Oklahoma State University, an experienced person can identify a ripe melon just by glancing at the glossy rind surface. Other indications of ripeness include a change in the color of the ground spot, or underbelly, from white to light yellow.

But a sure-fire way to make sure you have a good melon is to go to an expert, whether at Jeff Davis Park in Rush Springs on Saturday or one of the fruit and vegetable stands that line U.S. 81 this time of year.

The Lawton Constitution

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