It may not feel like fall quite yet, but this weekend marks the opening of three area pumpkin patches with others coming on board — or would that be gourd? — over the next couple of weekends.
And if you missed your opportunity to get selfies among the sunflowers, P&M Pumpkin Ranch in Moundridge folks say their four sunflower fields should be in full bloom this opening weekend as well. There also will be a zinnia field blooming for more floral fun.
As to whether a pumpkin is a gourd, according to “Southern Living” magazine, it’s both a gourd and a squash — and a fruit.
Whether you display them like gourds or eat them like squash (or a fruit), you can get your fill at these pumpkin patches that sell already picked ones or ones that you pick. Pumpkins are priced separately at all patches and not included in admission
All of the patches offer some sort of activities beyond picking pumpkins, ranging from low-key activities like on-your-own fishing and watching “Little Rascal” movies at Derby’s Mr. Gourdman’s, which opens in October, to faster-paced activities like pig races and pedal karts. One even offers helicopter rides on select Saturdays.
And pumpkin patches aren’t just for kids. At least two — Cedar Creek in Maize and Applejack near Augusta, which both open Sept. 24, have some evening programs for adults only.
Here’s a listing of seven pumpkin patches within easy driving distance of Wichita. Most have had nominal admission price increases this year. According to a Facebook post, hailstorms knocked out pumpkin plants at Papa’s Pumpkin Patch in Newton so it will be closed for 2022.
Opening Saturday, Sept. 17
P&M Pumpkin Ranch, 311 16th Ave., Moundridge, through Nov. 6. Hours: 4–7 p.m. Tuesdays-Thursdays; 10 a.m.–7 p.m. Fridays and Sundays; 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Saturdays; closed Mondays.
Visitors can have fun experiencing Western-themed activities like the Buckaroo Bouncer jumping pads, a Barnstormer zip line, Outlaw pedal kart races, daily Outlaw Oinkers pig races and more. An area called Grandpa’s Town has four separate buildings that each house additional activities geared for younger kids. Sunflower and zinnia fields are expected to be in full bloom this weekend.
Admission includes most activities, including a corn maze. Additional pay-to-participate activities include animal and fish feeding, pumpkin and corn cannons, gem mining and mini-diggers. Seven different-sized firepits to accommodate varying group sizes are also available to rent on the weekends.
Admission: $13 per person, free for 2 and younger, $30 for unlimited-visits season pass.
Walters’ Pumpkinfest, 10001 NW U.S. 77, Burns, through Oct. 30. Hours: 10 a.m.–7 p.m. Wednesdays-Saturdays; 1–7 p.m. Sundays.
With 70 acres of play area and a variety of activities included in general admission, families will have plenty to do at this farm near El Dorado besides pumpkin picking. Included activities include a corn maze, jumping pillows, hay-bale climbs, a Tiny Town, culvert and bag swings over a creek, farm animals, a corn bin, pedal boats, a 960-square-foot treehouse with a slide and an obstacle course. Add-on activities for an additional fee include pumpkin cannon and slingshot, gem mining, barrel train and duck (the plastic kind) races.
Admission: $13 Wednesdays-Fridays, with a $10 special Wednesday afternoon discounted admission from 3-7; $15 for weekends in September and $20 for October weekends; free for ages 2 and younger. Season passes for unlimited visits are $40 per person or $150 for family of four.
Opening Sunday, Sept. 18
Klausmeyer Dairy Farm & Pumpkin Patch, 8135 S. 119 St. West, Clearwater, open through Oct. 30. Hours: 9 a.m.-dark daily. Evening activities are 7–10 p.m. Friday and Saturdays,
As a working farm, Klausmeyer offers visitors plenty of animals to see and even milking demonstrations. Admission includes dairy tours, daily milking demonstrations and pig races, petting zoo and feeding animals activities, mazes through hay bales and a ½-acre sorghum field, fossil finding, barrel rides and a farmer-warrior obstacle course. Add-on attractions include paintball, gem mining and Barn of Fear.
The farm’s haunted evening activities consist of zombie paintball, the Barn of Fear and a larger 5-acre corn maze. Special events include the evening showing of the “Hocus Pocus” movie Saturday, Oct. 1, and a Halloween costume contest Oct. 29 and 30.
Admission: $10 weekends, $8 weekdays, a combo ticket for the pumpkin patch and a larger corn maze package is $13 on weekends or $10 on weekdays. Ages 2 and under are free. Evening admission and haunted packages for Friday and Saturday nights are $25 for zombie paintball, Barn of Fear and corn maze activities or purchase activities separately. Half-price admission specials for grandparents on opening day, Sept. 18, and for veterans, first responders, educators, medical staff and U.S. postal employees with valid IDs Sept. 24 and 25.
Opening Sept. 23
Marietta Farm, 1600 E. U.S. 54, Andover. Hours: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays; 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Fridays-Sundays.
With limited activities during the weekdays, the best time to visit if you want more family fun is Friday through Sunday, when all rides, games and concessions are open. Admission-included activities include corn pit, bouncer, tire swings, zip line, a playground and games. Additional ticketed activities include a carousel, a flying chair ride, corn and corn cannons, paintball, bungee bouncer and bumper cars.
Admission: is $8 Mondays through Thursdays, $10 Fridays through Saturday, with children 2 and younger free. Discounts available for military with ID.
Opening Sept. 24
Cedar Creek Farm & Pumpkin Patch, 6100 N. 119th St. West, Maize, open through Oct. 30. Hours: 10 a.m.–3 p.m. Tuesdays-Thursdays; 10 a.m.–7 p.m. Fridays-Sundays; late nights Fridays and Saturdays 7-10 p.m., closed Mondays.
Owners Kara and Aaron Smith had planted four sunflower fields that were to be ready for its pumpkin patch season but a lack of rainfall thwarted their plans.
There’s still plenty to do, however, for both families and adults only. Activities include a petting zoo, corn maze, pig races, hay-bale climbing, pony rides and a kids zone with things like steer-roping dummies, a playground and more. Princess and movie characters, like the Sanderson Sisters from “Hocus Pocus” and Kristoff and Elsa from “Frozen,” will be available for autographs and photos 11 a.m.-noon on Saturdays.
Helicopter rides are among the add-on activities, with opportunities to do that on a first-come, first-served basis 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays, Oct. 8, 15 and 20, at a cost of $40 per person with a two-rider minimum and three-rider max.
Adults-only nights include a ladies night 5-8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13, with a $5 admission or free with season pass, and a “Find Your Boo” singles mixer 7-10 p.m. Friday, Oct. 14, with a $10 admission or free with season pass.
While the farm is closed Monday nights, photographers — both professionals and hobbyists —and clients can visit the last two hours of sunlight at a cost of $5 per person with children 2 and under free.
From 7 to 10 p.m. Saturdays, Oct. 8, 15 and 22, the farm is offering a late-night corn maze event, with a $10 admission or free with a season pass. Fire pits and yard games are included.
The farm’s 4th annual Halloween Hootenanny trick-or-treat event is 4-7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 30. Admission is $5 per person with children under 1 free.
Admission: $12 for ages 3 and older, free for kids 2 and younger. Season pass is $25 per person for unlimited admission to the pumpkin patch and late nights.
Applejack Pumpkin Patch, 10007 SW Indianola Road, Augusta, through Oct. 30. Hours: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Wednesdays-Fridays; 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Saturdays; noon–6 p.m. Sundays; closed Mondays and Tuesdays.
New this season at Applejack is the Fridays at 5 evening events for the 21-and-older crowd. The three-hour outdoor event includes live entertainment, fire pits and yard games. The $10 admission includes a small bag of kettle corn and a bottle of water, with other beverages (including adult ones) and food for sale.
During regular hours, families can have fun with activities such as a play area, petting zoo, hayride, corn maze, zip line, big slide, obstacle course, oversized yard games, and more included in admission. Some activities are available for an additional fee. Weekend-only activities with add-on fees include the artillery line, adult pedal karts, and catfish and goat feedings, according to its website.
Admission: $12 for ages 3 and up, free for ages 2 and younger. Half-price admission for military and seniors with ID. Tickets may be purchased online.
More info: 316-733-8909, applejackpumpkinpatch.com, facebook.com/Applejack-Pumpkin-Patch-306961532736120
Opening Oct. 1
The two pumpkin patches opening the first Saturday in October offer more low-key experiences.
Mr. Gourdman’s, 3750 S. Dusty Road, Derby, through Oct. 30. Hours: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sundays; weekdays by appointment only.
Located near McConnell Air Force Base, this farm allows visitors to bring a picnic and enjoy activities like fishing (catch-and-release only with your own tackle), canoeing or kayaking on the 15-acre lake. There’s a playground and “Little Rascal” movies are shown continuously in the clubhouse.
Admission: $7 for ages 4 and older, free for kids 3 and younger; $5 for military with ID.
More information: 316-733-1887, wichitaspumpkinpatch.com
Meadowlark Farm, 11249 SW 160th St., Rose Hill, through fall while pumpkins are available. Hours: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesdays-Sundays.
Not only can you pick pumpkins, you can also pick apples at this orchard near Rose Hill. Cider pressing often happens in the store on Saturdays. There’s a playground, nature train and plenty of seating around the store.
Admission: $2.50 for ages 13 and older. Bring your own harvest knife or shears to cut the pumpkin off the vine or rent one from the store.