The leaves are turning color and just now beginning to fall in delicate waves from the trees. That means Pumpkin Patch Season is almost over! Halloween is next Wednesday, October 31st, so may be your last weekend to enjoy this annual tradition. Maryland is surrounded by rural farmland, so there are a plethora of hay mazes, tractor rides, corn pits, barrel rides and more for your family to enjoy.
Maryland farmers are doing just about anything they can to keep their land and stay in business. Fall festivals are one great way they can educate people about the hard work required for farming. It’s also an opportunity for them to market their produce. And children love anything having to do with cows, chickens, pig, goats and tractors. So go support your local farmer! Get some fresh air, let yourself get lost in a maze! Enjoy the season before the leaves are gone, the trees are bare, and spring seems eons away.
Many patches are open weekends only, so be sure to call ahead for updated information.
Anne Arundel County
Papa John’s Farm
8065 New Cut Road, Severn, MD 21144, (410)-969-8810
Open weekends 9am-6pm
Papa John’s is popular with school groups who get to touch many different types of pumpkins, visit with typical farm animals, take a tractor ride through a field punctuated with child-friendly Halloween monsters and a mini cemetary, and pick their own pumpkin.
About 20 minutes from Annapolis, just off Interstate 97, Exit 12. Look for the Big Red Barn “Home of Papa John’s”
Dick and Jane’s Farm
4361 Solomon’s Island Road, Harwood, MD 20776 (410)-867-3264
Open: 9am-6pm Monday-Saturday; Sunday 10am-6pm
We like Dick and Jane’s because it is small and rarely crowded during the week. We paid $4 per person for a short but sweet tractor ride that wound through the farm past beautiful fall foliage and a really cool campfire site. You can visit the farm at night for a campfire; BYO smores or dinner and call in advance. Pumpkins of every size sit in a small field the kids love to run through, and there is a little corn maze perfect for the toddler set.
About 15 minutes from Annapolis down Route 2 on the left hand side before the traffic circle. Look for the two stick horses and pumpkin field.
391 West Bay Front Road, Lothian, MD 20711, (410)-867-9500
Open: weekends through October 28th, 11am-4pm
Greenstreet Gardens is beautifully located in South Anne Arundel County. This experience includes a hay ride, pick your own pumpkins, and underground slide, jumping pillow, cow train ride, face painting and more. There is also a Moonlight Maze and Haunted Trail October 26th and 27th from 7-10pm.
About 35 minutes from Annapolis in rural southern Anne Arundel County
3924 Solomons Island Rd., (Route 2 and 424), Harwood, MD 443-871-1073
Open: weekends only, 10am to 5pm through Oct. 30.
Knightongale Farm is a 90-acre working farm. The Pumpkin Patch experience here is spread across a nice flat area, then a hilly pumpkin patch, so it never feels crowded. This is a calmer, simpler pumpkin patch experience. Activities including the corn maze and tractor ride are $3 each. Pony rides are $5 each. There are a couple penned farm animals, but the main attractions are for the little ones and include free activities like corn pits and swings. Snacks available for sale.
About 15 minutes from Annapolis, near Birdsville Road in Harwood, just before the Grace Evangelical Presbyterian Church on the right side of the road.
743 West Central Avenue, Davidsonville, MD (410)798-5000
Open: weekends 11-4 through November 4th
Homestead is a popular Halloween season experience. In fact, if you live in Anne Arundel County and have a little one in your life, you really should go. Purchase tickets so your kids can ride ponies, take a bumpy and exciting barrel ride, play games for prizes, see some rescued farm animals, get their face painted and paint their own pumpkin. Tickets are $1 each, and the ticket price of activities ranges.
Pumpkins large and small are available for sale. Pass the popcorn and cider stands for the small market with local produce and baked goods, then enter the greenhouse for an entirely different experience. This fall fest is usually very crowded, so try first thing in the morning, or later in the afternoon.
About 10-15 minutes from Annapolis, down Riva Road or Rte 2 to Central Avenue
TALBOT COUNTY- over the Bay Bridge
11773 Old Skipton Road, Cordova, MD 21625 (410)-822-8213
Open: everyday, 9am-5pm
Councell Farms is one of our favorite spots. Located along Route 50 near Easton, it has everything a kid could want in the fall: a Barnyard Jump, a Combine-turned-into-a-Swing-and-Slide, a Pedal Tractor Track, a Tee Pee to pretend in, a Rubberduck Race, a great Corn Maze (medium sized, not too hard), an Obstacle Course, Corn Box, Pumpkin Slinger game, Cage Ball, Goat Pen, enclosed bee hive and much more. Plan on spending a couple of hours, then stop at the BBQ stand just a couple of miles away on Rte 50, headed back toward Annapolis.
About 30 minutes from Annapolis, before you get to Easton. You have to do a u-turn on 50 to enter.
HOWARD COUNTY heading West
Hours: everyday 10am-4pm through November 6th
Cost: $5 per person. Hay rides, cow train rides and pony rides are an additional $2 per person.
Driving to Clark’s always seems to take a long time, but as you leave Rte 29, it becomes a beautiful, relaxing ride through rolling farmland. Clark’s is unusual because it includes several iconic fairy-land homes in what they call The Enchanted Forest. The hayride passes through the forest, where kids can catch glimpses of these kitschy bits of visual art. They actually are pretty cool for the adults too. There are plenty of farm animals for viewing, lots of games and a farm market with John Deere toys sure to capture your toddler’s attention on the way out. Bring a picnic- there are several pretty places to sit and rest.
About 45 minutes from Annapolis
Open: Tuesdays – Fridays 9am-6pm, Sat.-Sun. 9:00am – 5:00pm
Larriland Farm is a fall wonderland. Start at the top of the farm near the market where there is a small maze for the little ones. Check out the pumpkins, then head to the rear of the farm market, near the cider stand, to enter the not-so-spooky haunted house, aka Boo Barn. My little ones go through this short thrill over and over and over…Check out the farm animals in their pen, take a picture in the pumpkin cutouts, then get in line for the tractor ride. Larriland is huge, and the tractor ride goes quite a long ways through fields and past spooky characters from American history and literature. Pick you own pumpkin, then return to the market for some local treats. They have a great selection of canning supplies for sale, as well as regional cheeses, jams, jellies and cider.
About 45 minutes from Annapolis
BALTIMORE COUNTY- going North
Huber’s Family Produce Farm
11898 Philadelphia Rd., Bradshaw, MD (410)679-1948 or (410)679-1941
Open: Everyday, 10am to 5pm through October 31
Admission to both mazes is $6 for adults, $3 for children younger than 13.
This pick-your-own pumpkin farm’s five-acre corn maze is a little but difficult and designed for kids ages 10 and older. A Sponge Bob mini maze is better for the toddler set. There is an activity area with a moon bounce for an additional $5.
About 1 hour from Annapolis, near Perry Hall
Rodgers Farm, formerly North Run Farm
1701 Greenspring Valley Rd., Stevenson, MD. (410)241-3392. www.northrunfarm.com
Open: Fridays 12 to 6, Saturdays and Sundays 10 to 6 through October 30 Admission for the maze, hay ride and farm is $8 ages 13 and older, $6 children ages 4 to 12 and free for children younger than 4. Admission a la carte is slightly less.
We like Rodger’s because of the challenging maze. They change the design annually, and are very proud of their handiwork. This year it commemorates the War of 1812. Kids also can navigate a mini-maze constructed with straw bales. There are tractor rides, farm animals and pumpkins. October 26th they host a flashlight maze. Call for details.
About 1 hour from Annapolis
6009 Church Lane, Hydes, MD. (410)592-8040.
Open: Saturdays and Sundays 10 to 5 through October 30,
Free farm admission and parking.
Fall highlights at this 60-acre agriculturally conserved farm include a six-acre corn maze and free hayrides to the pick-your-own pumpkin patch. Other highlights, most of which cost $2 each, include horse and pony rides, pumpkin and face painting, a straw climb and a bean-bag toss.
About 1 hour, 15 minutes from Annapolis
Spring Meadow Farms
15513 Hanover Pike (Route 30), Upperco, MD. (410)239-8505. www.springmeadowfarms.com
Hours: weekends 10am-4pm through October 30.
Admission: $8 for kids 1 and older. Tiny wee ones and adults are free
Admission to another of our favorite farms includes unlimited use of our pedal tractors, kiddie corral, pony races, obstacle course, kid sized corn maze, not so scary haunted house, straw jump, pony rides, cow train and more. Face painting, food concession stand, ice cream, scarecrow making, pumpkin decorating and a huge variety of fall items are available for purchase. A big plus is they have real bathrooms!
About 1 hour, 5 minutes from Annapolis
2526 Proctor Lane, Baltimore, MD. (410)668-4488.
Open: weekends 9am-6pm through November 4th.
Admission: $6 for adults age 17 and over, $8 for children age 2-17. Admission includes one hayride, straw maze, mini-straw maze, pedal tractors, hillside slide, tractor wagon ride, Duck Races and more. Gem mining and a scarecrow workshop cost a little extra. Pick your own apple season is over, but don’t forget to try this farm’s awesome donuts, which we never fail to stop for in our travels that direction.
About 1 hour from Annapolis
PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY
1720 Crain Highway, Upper Marlboro, MD (410) 320-0464
Open weekends through November 4th
Friday: 5pm-11pm, Saturday 10am-11pm, Sunday 11am-7pm
Open all day Monday, October 29th 10am-11pm
Admission: $10 adults, $8 kids, 2 and under are free. Admission includes hay maze.
Montpelier Farm is one you shouldn’t miss. It has everything! All the traditional games, hay rides, and more, plus a movie for the 10-and-below crowd. Some games such as the moon bounce, pumpkin chuckin, barrel train and pumpkin painting require tickets, which are $1 each, less if you buy more.
About 30 minutes from Annapolis down 301.
Billingsley House Museum
6900 Green Landing Rd., Upper Marlboro, MD. (301)627-0730. www.pgparks.com/places/eleganthistoric/billingsley_intro.html .
Call before you visit this historic Prince George’s County property. It is beautiful!
About 45 minutes from Annapolis.
Queen Anne Farm
18102 Central Ave. (Route 214 East), Mitchellville, MD. (301)249-2427. www.queenannefarm.com
Open: everyday 10am-6pm
Explore the farm, take a hay ride (Saturday and Sundays, weather permitting), pet the animals, enjoy the flowers, learn about vegetables, and visit the farm market for beautiful pumpkins of every size and color.
About 26 minutes from Annapolis
ST. MARY’S COUNTY- heading South
Forrest Hall Farm
39136 Avie Lane, Mechanicsville, MD 20659, (301) 884-3086
Hours: weekends, 9am-5pm
Admission: $7 per person. Free for age 3 and younger, Group Rate: $6 per person for groups of 5 or more.
We have family in St. Mary’s County, so we always stop by Forrest Hall Farm on our way there. Formerly a tobacco farm, this beautiful spot is now an agri-tourist attraction. They are famous for their Crazy Maze, which is in the shape of a large cow this year. It’s a pretty hard maze, with checkpoints along the way. For the smaller set, there is a hay wagon slide, picnic area, fun & games, farm animals and hayride! Duck into the farm store, where you can find seasonal produce, decorative items and sometimes some near artwork from local crafters.
About 1 hour, 15 minutes from Annapolis
The Maize at Bowles Farm
22880 Budds Creek Road, Clements, MD 20624, (301)475-2139
Hours: weekends 10am-6pm through October 28th
Admission: $10 per person, 3 and under free.
This farm happens to be very near to my mother-in-law’s house, so we have been several times. Bowles takes their fall celebration seriously, as this season is their primary source of income for the year. Admission includes maze, petting zoo, children’s play area, wagon rides and barrel rides. The maze at Bowles Farm, in St. Mary’s County near Leonardtown, is especially fun to look at from the large platform high up above the corn. This year the maze is cut out in the shape of the Medstar St. Mary’s Hospital, which is celebrating 100 years in business. This is a nice spot just off the road, with plenty to do and a nice barn. Bonus: inside the barn is The Farmer’s Daughter Cupcake Shop. If you are headed to Patuxent NAS, it’s a great place to stop. On October 28th they will have a Halloween party. Show up in your costume for $2 off admission.
About 1 hour, 30 minutes from Annapolis off Pincushion Road & Rte
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