Unless you're crazy busy and can't find a weekend to do said pumpkin picking ... That would be us these days.
Since no weekend days were open, we made due with a Thursday morning without Daddy, and although we couldn't head to our favorite place (see below), we tried one of our runner ups and still had a great time. Check out a few pics (in the third one, the kids are trying to be scary) and also our top pics for area pumpkin patches below.
1st Place: Johnson Farms
177th and Holmes in Kansas City, Missouri
What I love: Riding out to the pumpkin patch on a hayride, picking pumpkins off the vine, finding amazing, unique pumpkins in all colors, shapes and sizes, pony and train rides, sunflowers and zinnias for amazing photo backdrops.
Drawbacks: You need your spouse for all the heavy lifting and hauling, and it's pricey! Kids 3-12 are $12 each, and adults are $10 each (save a dollar on each admission by visiting the farm's website). Admission doesn't cover the cost of pumpkins, which in my experience (and with such a great variety to choose from), tends to be expensive. Pony rides, which my girls always want, are an additional $5 each.
Runner Up: Deanna Rose Children's Farmstead
135th and Switzer in Overland Park, Kansas
What I love: It's easy and fun for all ages, plus there's a great slide the kids love. I managed this place on my own - easy! It's cheaper too - only $7 each and that includes one pumpkin/person. You can also take advantage of all of the other farm attractions for free during the week. Pony rides are $3 per child.
Drawbacks: The pumpkins are more than a little boring. You don't pick them off the vine, and they all look about the same - same shape, size and color. Boo.
Runner Up: Faulkner's Ranch
South of I-470 on West side of Raytown Road in Kansas City, Missouri
What I love: This is a very quaint family-run farm with several activities for the kids, including a little train they love and want to ride over and over again. Like Deanna Rose, admission is $7, but does not include the cost of pumpkins. One plus for parents on a budget: Admission is only $3.50/person during the farm's "Halfy Hours" from from 3 to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday.
Drawbacks: Your pumpkin pickings aren't as great as Johnson Farms, but they're better than Deanna Rose. No picking off the vine. Boo again.
Runner Up: Louisburg Cider Mill
US Highway 69 and Hwy. 68 in Louisburg, Kansas
What I love: Apple cider doughnuts. Need I say more? OK, I guess I will. The whole set-up is pretty adorable with the barn for making cider and the little store. Very small-town cute. I also love the caramel apples and apple cider. Basically, the treats rock.
Drawbacks: We tried this pumpkin patch last year for the first time, and it was really smelly. Isn't that weird? Plus, the pumpkins had been completely picked over; it was hard to find any decent ones left. I don't think we bought any. The corn maze also kind of creeped me out.
That's our round-up for now. Do you agree? Disagree? What's your favorite? Share!