Best pumpkin patches in Austin
Sweet Berry Farms grows strawberries, blackberries, peaches, onions and potatoes starting in March, but September through October, they’re all about the pumpkins (75 cents to $60). This patch has enough activities to keep anyone busy for hours. Start with a hayride or travel on the Sweet Berry Express Barrel Train, then get lost in the Candy Corn Kid Maze or stuff your own scarecrow. From face painting to flower picking to bouncing in the Berry Bounce, Sweet Berry Farms has you covered. On weekends the Pumpkin Grill is open serving grilled corn, hot dogs and sandwiches. They even make their own pumpkin ice cream.
In Bastrop, on the banks of the scenic Colorado River, discover Barton Hill Farms, a 4-acre pumpkin patch playground. Explore a themed corn maze ($13, which also gets you a pumpkin)—this year’s maze design celebrates the 100th birthday of the U.S Army’s Curtiss JN-4 biplane—or Spookley Kid’s Maze, a “knee-high little maze just for knee-high kids.” Meet and feed the calves, goats and piglets, romp in the sandpit “ship” or on a giant jumping pillow, and enjoy old-fashioned yard games like corn hole and sack races. The laid-back option is to pick up some hot dogs and barbecue with wine and beer, provided on site, while listening to some good ol’ honky-tonk and Southern bluegrass music.
At this family-owned pumpkin patch, you might be greeted by Patsy Cline—or possibly Patsy’s siblings, Hobby Lobby, Riley, Sophia and Lily who all live at the Critter Coral. They’re all goats, and just happen to be the newest members of the Robinson Family Farm crew. (Pickles and Shadow Ninja, the new lambs, are also in residence.) Besides picking your own specialty pumpkins ($1-$8), the farm offers a hay maze, corn maze, hayride and tractor train. Sausage wraps are available at the Snack Barn and pies are aplenty at the Country Store.
Evergreen Farms, established in 1989 and owned by Mike and Beth Walterscheidt, is known for their Pumpkin Hunt (and later in the season, their Christmas trees.) The Pumpkin Hunt involves a wagon ride into the Christmas tree fields where mini pumpkins are hidden in the trees. After the hunt, there is much to be done with pumpkin decorating, pumpkin races, train rides, a fishing pond, Hop-Along Ponies and fire truck rides on an authentic pumper fire truck. Kiddos get to go home with a fire hat after their ride.
Cross Plants and Produce is a year-round, family-owned farm selling milk, eggs, honey, meats and produce, as well as a local plant nursery that transforms into a pumpkin patch playground in early October. Besides picking out a pumpkin, you can paint your squash, enjoy storytime in the pumpkin patch, climb on a hay pyramid, explore a tractor or swing from the trees. Bring a picnic and visit with the local mini horse and mini donkey, Shorty and Spot.
The Elgin Christmas Tree Farm, run by the Walton family since 1984, keeps kids of all ages busy with three mazes: The Hay Bale Maze, Corn Maze and Crazy Maze. Get competitive in the rubber duck race, take a ride on the farm train or a long winding hayride around the Christmas trees. Also on site to greet visitors are goats, pigs, alpacas, rabbits and donkeys and, during the Pumpkin Festival, there’s Elgin sausages and other family friendly concessions, a bake sale and shopping at the Cottage and Barn Store. Did we mention they have pumpkins, too? Children receive a mini pumpkin to decorate and take home, or you can purchase additional pumpkins at the farm.
Known as the “Pumpkin Patch Church,” the First United Methodist Church in Seguin embraces the season by celebrating Pumpkin Arrival Day when volunteers unload the pumpkin trucks from Arizona and New Mexico. Grown on Indian reservations, the proceeds are then split between the church and the farmers. In addition to regular pumpkins, they have unique varieties too, like white pumpkins and swan gourds. October 21 is the second annual Puppies in the Patch adoption event including a Blessing of the Animals and petting zoo. Otherwise, come for story time in the pumpkin patch and enjoy cookies for sale.
If you are looking for a patch of pumpkins in your own backyard, the Tarrytown United Methodist church has been welcoming Austinites for over thirty years with their selection of pumpkins, including the small pumpkins used for pumpkin pie. David Chambers, director of Youth Ministry for the church says that, “one hundred thousand pounds of pumpkins are delivered” each year, coming from a Navajo-run New Mexico pumpkin farm. The TUMC patch raises money for youth activities and missions benefiting neighbors from Austin to projects in Guatemala and Zimbabwe. Insider tip: the best time to come for an ultimate photo opp is the day the pumpkins are unloaded, October 1 and 15 around noon.
Looking for a fright?
Take a trip to these haunted houses for a spooktacular evening.