Fall in the Midwest means one thing – time to pack up the family and head off to the nearest pumpkin patch. The Omaha area is blessed with several outstanding pumpkin patches where you can spend an entire day. Here’s a look at a few of the best patches in the area.
COVID-19 update: Before heading out, please ensure you check each pumpkin patch’s website or Facebook page for their requirements and restrictions.
1. Vala’s Pumpkin Patch and Apple Orchard
Where: 12102 S. 180th St., Gretna, Neb.
Dubbed by some as Nebraska’s “Disney World,” a trip to Vala’s Pumpkin Patch and Apple Orchard is a visit to pumpkin paradise. From the food, including giant turkey legs, sandwiches, soup, and all kinds of pie, to children’s rides, entertaining shows, and scary haunted houses, it may be challenging to decide what to do first.
Vala’s is home to a petting zoo, where you can also purchase feed for animals, such as goats and a camel. Take a trip through a giant corn maze, as well as try your luck at the pumpkin cannon, and more.
Oh, you’re here for the pumpkins, right? Hop aboard and enjoy a hayride to the pumpkin patch, where you can search acres upon acres for the perfect pumpkin.
You do know you’ll need a pumpkin for each person in your party, right? Otherwise, how will you make scary jack-o-lanterns, as well as pumpkin pie and pumpkin bread? On your way out of the park, don’t forget to pick up a few treats, including caramel apples, freshly popped kettle corn, and so much more!
Vala’s Pumpkin Patch opens for its 35th season Sept. 18 (as well as open for the special weekend-only Apple Festival from Sept. 4-7) and will be open through Nov. 1.
Related post: Vala’s Scavenger Hunt
2. Bellevue Berry and Pumpkin Ranch
Where: 11001 S. 48th St., Papillion, Neb.
You’re never quite sure what to expect when visiting Bellevue Berry and Pumpkin Ranch. With an old western town, you feel like you may encounter a gunslinger looking for a shootout. But, then, you find the pirate ship, so the pirates are going to take on the cowboys?
While your imaginary characters figure out what to do, you can enjoy a wagon ride around 20 acres of farmland, including a trip through a wooded area.
Children can have fun playing at the How the West was Won area, including slides, ziplines, and a climbing net. They can also play on a bounce pad and pirates swing, as well as ride a kid’s train and explore a haunted walk.
Then, it’s time to head to the pumpkin patch, in search of the gourd that tops all other gourds. Bellevue Berry Farm and Pumpkin Ranch also offers hot food and drinks, including barbecue and turkey legs. On weekends, the Pirates Pub serves alcohol.
Open weekends, the pumpkin patch season runs from Sept. 12 through Oct. 31.
3. Wenninghoff’s Farm
Where: 6707 Wenninghoff Road, Omaha
You won’t find a haunted house at Wenninghoff’s. Instead, the north-central Omaha pumpkin patch encourages everyone to become a kid again and get a little dirty playing on a combine slide and a corn play area, as well as playing tug of war and painting a pumpkin.
Enjoy a walk through the corn maze, and an old-fashioned hayrack ride before venturing off to select your pumpkin.
Open weekends Sept. 26-Oct. 31, Wenninghoff’s also offers weekday school field trips.
4. Skinny Bones Pumpkin Patch
Where: 3936 State Highway 133, Blair, Neb.
Realizing a longtime dream, Skinny Bones Pumpkin Patch opened in 2008 between Omaha and Blair. With more than 30 attractions on the farm, you’ll want to plan to spend the day.
From the nation’s largest tornado simulator at Tornado Alley to a giant slide, as well as a corn pool and gigantic bounce pillows, your children will be challenged NOT to have a good time. With one of the best corn mazes in the Metro area, enjoy an adventure through 10 acres of cornfield fun.
While at Skinny Bones, enjoy a large turkey leg and pulled pork BBQ sandwiches, or a hot dog, among other items on the full-service menu.
Of course, the main reason for the visit is to find a great pumpkin, so climb aboard for a hayride to the pumpkin patch, which is open daily Sept. 11 through Oct. 31.
5. Welch’s Pumpkin Patch
Where: 17676 Sunnydale Road, Council Bluffs, Iowa
Welch’s foregoes the games and activities. Instead, they want to help you pick out the best pumpkin you can find, so the farm features wooden toys, such as a fort. Open daily, Welch’s season starts Sept. 12 and runs through October.
More pumpkin patches in Nebraska and Iowa
If you want even more ideas for pumpkin patch outings, here are a few more to consider. All of these are about an hour or less from Omaha, with the first ones being the closest:
- 6. Ditmars Orchard & Vineyard, 19475 225th St., Council Bluffs, Iowa
- 7. Pioneer Trail Orchard & Pumpkin Patch, 21534 Chestnut Road, Council Bluffs, Iowa
- 8. Nelson Produce Farm, 10505 N. 234th St., Valley, Neb.
- 9. Bloom Where You’re Planted Farm, 911-108th St., Avoca, Neb.
- 10. Camp Fontenelle, 9677 County Road 3, Fontanelle, Neb.
- 11. Martin’s Hillside Orchard, 2024 Ashland Road, Ceresco, Neb.
- 12. Arbor Day Farm Tree Adventure, 2611 Arbor Ave., Nebraska City, Neb.
- 13. Harvest Moon Farm, 1410 Highway 77, Oakland, Neb.
- 14. Roca Berry Farm, 16531 S. 38th St., Roca, Neb.
- 15. 3 Bees Farms, 14922 535th St., Griswold, Iowa
- 16. McCurdy’s Pumpkins, at Highway 71 and Highway 6, Atlantic, Iowa
With impressive pumpkin patches in the area, you may find it difficult to choose just one to visit. Since the pumpkin season runs about six weeks, that should be enough time to maybe, I don’t know, visit each of them.
Just imagine how many jack-o-lanterns you and the young ones can make. And how many pies and pumpkin bread you can make. And pumpkin cookies. And pumpkin bars. And…
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