Last weekend, our little family decided it was time to go pumpkin picking. Like apple picking, picking a pumpkin is always high on our fall to-do list. Just from scrolling Instagram and looking at my Facebook feed, it seemed that a lot of people (if not everyone), went to Pumpkin Valley Farm in Dayton, Maine for pumpkins. After skimming the website, it looked super fun and just what we needed for our active toddler.
You can’t tell by these photos, but Allie was actually super sick just 24 hours prior to taking these photos. She spiked a fever in the middle of the night, Thursday night and was laid up on the couch all morning with a 103 fever. So I wasn’t sure we’d even be able to get out this weekend to go get our pumpkins as planned. I really thought we’d be making our first trip to Urgent Care.
Thankfully, we were able to get the fever down and she was miraculously feeling a million times better by the middle of the afternoon on Friday and since she didn’t have a fever Saturday morning, we figured some fresh air would only do her some good at that point.
So here’s the deal on Pumpkin Valley Farm. It is AWESOME for families. I already plan on going back next year and possibly all years after that. It’s open every fall from mid-September to late October (final weekend this year being this weekend – October 27th and 28th) and is only a short 30-minute drive from Portland, Maine. They’re open on Saturday’s and Sundays from 10 am to 6 pm with admission ending around 4:30 pm. We opted to go around 2 o’clock after Allie’s nap and while there were definitely a lot of people, it was a big enough place to where the large crowd wasn’t a big deal.
Admission is $10 for everyone 2 years old and older so since Allie is just 16 months, we only paid $20 to get in. This may seem more pricey for those with more kids/larger families, but that $10 gives you access to so many fun activities such as the corn maze, the pumpkin patch, hayrides, a jumping pillow, 2 shots on the corn launcher, 1 ride for children 12 years old and younger on the cow train, play areas, the petting zoo, and face painting. Parking is free as well. So the admission price is awesome for the number of activities you have access to.
The first thing we did when we arrived, was walk through the corn maze. This maze was pretty big and I’ll be honest, we never actually made it to the end. They have a few fun activities you can play along the way to help you get from one end to the other and we gave up on it at the first checkpoint. Zack preferred to just explore and let Allie run around and lead. I’m not sure if this was a good idea or a horrible idea, but it was so much fun! We were lost, but it was fun.
TIP: If you’re bringing a stroller, I highly recommend a jogger! The terrain can be super rough and I couldn’t even imagine not having our jogger for this outing. Our travel stroller wouldn’t have made it.
At one point in the corn maze, I stopped to try to take some cute photos with Allie for this blog post and Instagram and she just wasn’t having it. Like full-blown tantrum kind of not in the mood. She much preferred to be on the loose, running through the maze so I gave up and set her free again (thankfully we did get some cute photos later on in the day).
After we finally got out of the corn maze, I took Allie to this cute little play area while Zack got us some snacks. I was pleasantly surprised by the pricing of the food. Not only was admission super affordable, but the food was as well. Zack came back with two hot dogs, a bag of Doritos, and a pretty big bag of kettle corn and only paid $9! Again, this is perfect for families needing an affordable afternoon activity this season.
TIP: Bring cash for the concessions! They don’t take a card and I don’t remember seeing an ATM while we were there.
Once we were done eating, we decided to find some animals to pet. Since Allie is still a bit too small for things like the bounce houses, we figured animals would be more her pace. She loved petting the animals at Smiling Hill Farm over the summer so I knew she’d enjoy them. And she did.
Unfortunately, there weren’t any areas where she could go in and actually play with them, but she liked going from cage to cage, reaching in and talking to them. We tried to take her to see the cow and donkey, but for some reason, she was terrified of the cow’s moo. It was quite loud and she broke down in tears every single time. So we didn’t hang out with the cow for too long.
The last thing we did was actually pick out our pumpkins. We really didn’t want to have to drag around our pumpkins and they took up Allie’s whole stroller too. So we saved it for the end. Again, her jogging stroller was super helpful to have with us! Farms are so hard to drag regular strollers through so I’m very glad we swapped out our travel stroller for the jogger.
TIP: Save pumpkins for last! Otherwise, you could be left carrying it around or making a trip to the car. Depending on where you park, that “quick” trip to the car could take a bit!
Allie was super cute wandering the pumpkin patch and picking out her pumpkin. Recently she’s learned how to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ (she still doesn’t say a whole lot – maybe 5 words total) and the moment Zack handed her a pumpkin, she looked at him and said ‘thank you’. It was literally the most adorable thing EVER. Such a polite little girl we have. that moment made my mom heart so happy.
Like the concessions, the pumpkins were very reasonably priced as well. Pumpkins under 5 pounds were all $2.50 and then pumpkins over 5 pounds were $0.49 per pound. I think Allie’s came out to be about 8 pounds and ours was just under 16 pounds so we spent roughly $12 on our two pumpkins. Again, suuuuper affordable! We spent maybe $40 on this outing which isn’t bad at all for 2 hours of fun.
If you’re in Southern Maine and need something to do this weekend, I highly recommend Pumpkin Valley Farm! Again, they’re open Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm (admission ends at 4:30 pm) and be sure to carry cash! Our family had so much fun exploring the corn maze and picking our pumpkins. We definitely recommend it to other families in the area!