By Melanie Fincher
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Find a pumpkin patch near you.

It's officially October, and that means the season for the time-honored tradition of heading to the pumpkin patch in search of the perfect pumpkin for your front porch is here. From coast to coast, these bright orange gourds will begin to show up on doorsteps around the first weekend in October.

But there's a lot more to this tradition than just picking pumpkins — hayrides, country markets, corn mazes, and farm animals are just some of the family-friendly activities to enjoy at the pumpkin patch. And make sure to save the seeds of your hollowed out jack-o-lantern for a tasty fall treat. Discover the best pumpkin patches in every region of the U.S., and find one near you.

Photo by Getty Images

Best Pumpkin Patches in the West

If you live on the West Coast, you're in luck. There are many pumpkin patches to choose from, and California is one of the top pumpkin-producing states in the nation. Whether you're heading to the farm in a t-shirt, or bundled up with cider in hand, here are the best pumpkin patches along the West Coast:

1. Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival, Half Moon Bay, California

While it's not technically a pumpkin patch, the Half Moon Bay Art and Pumpkin Festival is the pumpkin event that's not to be missed if you live in the San Francisco Bay Area. The town of Half Moon Bay is known as the "World Pumpkin Capital," where fall pumpkins and festivities are enjoyed in the midst of a picturesque coastal town. This year's festival will be held on Oct. 19th and 20th. Must-see attractions include masterful pumpkin sculptures, harvest-inspired crafts, artisan markets, live music, festive food, and of course the weigh-off champion pumpkins on display that are literally the size of cars. There will be thousands of pumpkins for sale at the festival, too, but local pumpkin patches will also be open if you prefer to pick your own.

2. Roloff Farms, Hillsboro, Oregon

You probably know the Roloff family from their long-running TLC show, "Little People, Big World." Roloff Farms has grown into one of the nation's best pumpkin patches, located just 30 miles west of Portland. The farm is open for pumpkin season on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays in October. Admission is free, and you-pick pumpkins are available in addition to food carts, the Gift Barn, wagon tours, pony rides, and the Pumpkin Fun House. The Kid's Zone is packed with fun activities for your kids — from the bamboo maze to the giant slingshots.

3. Craven Farm, Snohomish, Washington

The Craven Farm has been in the same family since 1949. It's just a short drive from Seattle, and it's open daily for U-Pick pumpkins, squash, and gourds — there's over 50 varieties grown on the farm. While you're there, check out the, 15-acre corn maze, farm animals, mini golf, and human foosball (you read that right). Pack a lunch to enjoy at the picnic tables, and stop by the gift shop on your way out for Craven Farm jams and jellies to remember your trip by.

4. The Pumpkin Patch, Portland, Oregon

Known as "Portland's Original Pumpkin Patch," The Pumpkin Patch is located on Sauvie Island, just 15 minutes northwest of the city. "October Fest" is in full swing at the patch every day in October. Take a free hayride to the pumpkin patch before checking out the Bigfoot Maize, the Big Red Animal Barn, the Giant Hay Pyramid and Hay Maze, and the Cow Train. The Patio Cafe and Pumpkin Perk Coffee are open daily for fall eats. Purchase homegrown fruits and vegetables at the Produce Market and bring home a gift from the Pumpkin Cottage Giftshop.

5. Cool Patch Pumpkins, Dixon, California

Cool Patch Pumpkins was founded in 2001 by Matt Cooley, when he and his kids began selling pumpkins on the side of his pumpkin field. Since then, it has grown into a nationally-renowned pumpkin patch. The patch is open every day, and kids can play in the giant corn bath and experience the mini grass maze. Take a grand tour of the patch on a hayride, or drive around the track on a pedal car. And for the main event, get lost in the 63-acre corn maze, certified by the Guinness World Records as the planet's biggest.

Best Pumpkin Patches in the Midwest

Fall in the Midwest isn't complete without a visit to the pumpkin patch. The midwest is home to many of the top pumpkin-producing states, including Illinois, where the city of Morton produces 85 percent of the world's canned pumpkin. Check out our picks for the best the region has to offer.

Photo by Bengston's Pumpkin Farm

1. Vala's Pumpkin Patch, Gretna, Nebraska

Heading into its 35th year of operation, Vala's Pumpkin Patch is flooded with thousands of guests each fall. The 400-acre farm located just outside of Omaha has nearly 55 acres of pumpkins planted each year. You can easily spend a whole day at Vala's, enjoying the dozens of attractions for guests young and old. From the Haunted Farmhouse to the Camel Corral, there is something for everyone to see and enjoy.

2. Bengtson's Pumpkin Farm, Homer Glen, Illinois

Make a visit to Bengston's this fall for their annual Pumpkin Fest. Just an hour's drive from Chicago, Bengston's is open every day through late November. Gnaw on some turkey legs, or indulge in an apple cider donut while you're there. And save some time to browse the Halloween Shop that's filled floor to ceiling with Halloween-themed gifts and decor. The kids won't want to miss the Pig Races or the Haunted Barn — plan to spend the whole day at Bengston's!

3. Three Cedars Farm, Northville, Michigan

Three Cedars Farm is just a short drive from Detroit for all the old-fashioned fun you're looking for this fall. The farm is open everyday for U-Pick pumpkins, hayrides, and of course the seven-acre corn maze. The donut hut is a must-see attraction on the farm. Three Cedars describes it as "a favorite stop for city folks!" Take some freshly-made donuts and pasteurized apple cider home to enjoy all week.

4. Walter's Pumpkin Patch, Burns, Kansas

Known as "Wichita's Favorite Pumpkin Patch," Walter's hosts an annual PumpkinFest, complete with pick-your-own pumpkins and dozens of other family-friendly attractions. Carroll and Becky Walters own and operate this 1700-acre farm with over 73 acres of pumpkin patch. From the Prairie Playground to the brand new treehouse, there are more than enough activities for the whole family.

Best Pumpkin Patches in New England

If you live in one of the New England states, you know that pumpkin picking is an autumn tradition here. As you're taking in the spectacular colors of the New England leaves, make a road trip to one of these top-rated pumpkin patches to find your perfect pumpkin this October.

1. Angevine Farm, Warren, Connecticut

Angevine Farm dates all the way back to 1868 and is now being run by the fourth, fifth, and sixth generations of the Angevine Family. While they're primarily known for their Christmas trees, the month of October is all about pumpkins at the farm. Pick-your-own pumpkins are available Friday through Sunday. Pick right from the patches or select a pre-picked pumpkin at The Harvest Barn Gift Shop.

2. Echo Hill Orchards and Winery, Monson, Massachusetts

This family-owned and operated farm business has 20 years of experience providing the greater Springfield area with pick-your-own sunflowers, apples, and pumpkins. Visit on a Saturday or Sunday for a scenic tractor ride up Flynt Mountain to the patch. Adults will enjoy the wine tasting room open every weekend with a variety of wines, ports, and moonshines to try.

3. George Hill Orchards, Lancaster, Massachusetts

Beginning in mid-September, George Hill Orchards' pumpkin patches are available for picking every day of the week, except Saturdays and Mondays. Choose from field pumpkins, sugar pumpkins, or a variety of colorful gourds. Come out and enjoy a meal at the scenic Farm House Grille with a panoramic view of the town of Lancaster. If you visit on a Sunday, don't leave without getting a taste of their homemade pies and hot spiced cider.

What first began as a dairy farm in 1877 is now one of the area's premier pumpkin growers. Harris Hill Farm is open every weekend in October for pick-your-own pumpkins. Guests can also enjoy corn trivia, a hayride, and the barn filled with farm animals. While they specialize in large, jack-o-lantern style pumpkins, you can also find all types of winter squash, gourds, mini pumpkins, and specialty pumpkins on the farm.

5. Salisbury Farm, Johnston, Rhode Island

The Salisbury Farm has been owned and operated by five generations of the Salisbury family. What began as a dairy farm, the Salisbury Farm now offers hayrides, pumpkins, corn, raspberries, mums, and strawberries. The farm's largest attraction is the corn maze. Founded in 1998, it was the first of its kind in New England. As their website states, "Thousands of people entered the maze last year, most of them got out."

Best Pumpkin Patches in the Mid-Atlantic

The Mid-Atlantic knows how to celebrate fall! As the weather begins to turn and you pull out your favorite sweater from the depths of your closet, consider making a trip to one of the best pumpkin patches the region has to offer.

Photo by Heaven Hill Farm

1. Jumbo's Pumpkin Patch, Middletown, Maryland

All October long Jumbo's Pumpkin Patch is open daily for pick-your-own pumpkins. Get lost in the 20-acre corn maze or the thousands of square feet of shopping filled with decor, baked goods, and more. Easily accessible from Baltimore or Washington D.C., Jumbo's makes a great weekend trip for special weekend-only farm activities.

2. Heaven Hill Farm, Vernon, New Jersey

What started in 1982 as a roadside fruit and vegetable stand is now Heaven Hill Farm. Nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, Heaven Hill Farm hosts its Great Pumpkin Festival every October, the largest of its kind in Northern New Jersey. Spend the day riding the hay wagon tractor, exploring the corn maze, and picking the perfect jack-o-lantern.

3. The Great Pumpkin Farm, Clarence, New York

Located just outside of Buffalo in the town of Clarence, the Great Pumpkin Farm is open daily through October. The farm started in 1996 as a way of celebrating the harvest each fall by hosting the "World Pumpkin Weigh-Off" (which ended up in the Guinness World Book of Records for the first 1,000-pound pumpkin). Today, the Great Pumpkin Farm's Fall Festival has grown into a signature event in Western New York. From the Witches Brew Bar & Cafe to Pumpkin Palace, the Great Pumpkin Farm is the pumpkin wonderland you've been waiting for.

4. Linvilla Orchards, Media, Pennsylvania

A trip to Pumpkinland at Linvilla Orchards has become a tradition to many residents of Delaware Valley. Don't miss your chance to visit now through early November for over 100 tons of pumpkins on display, live entertainment, hayrides, cornfield and straw bale mazes and more. It's just a quick drive from Philadelphia for loads of fall fun!

5. Cox Farms, Centreville, Virginia

Fall Festival at Cox Farms is open now through early November for much more than just pumpkins (although they have those too). Enjoy live music, live cow-milking demos, their "World Famous Hayride," several large outdoor slides, and all the festival foods you could possibly want — hello, caramel apples!

6. Baugher's Orchards, Westminster, Maryland

Since 1904, Baugher's Orchard has been a working fruit and vegetable stand. Today, this 600-acre operation is one of the largest orchards in Maryland. U-Pick pumpkins are available every Saturday and Sunday at the Orchard. Take a wagon ride up scenic Carroll County hills to the pumpkin patch. Apple cider slushies, homemade pies and ice cream, and apple cider donuts will be waiting for you at the orchard market when you return. Kids will love meeting the farm animals at the petting zoo, too!

Best Pumpkin Patches in the Southeast

Heading to the pumpkin patch is the perfect way to get into the fall spirit, even when it doesn't feel like fall outside (90 degrees in October? No thanks). Whether you're sippin' on cold apple slushies or hot apple cider, there's more than enough fun to be had on the farm. Discover the top pumpkin patches across the Southeast.

Photo by Mike's Farm

1. Mike's Farm, Beulaville, North Carolina

One of the most popular times of year at Mike's Farm is pumpkin season. Take a relaxing hayride around the farm on your way to do a little pumpkin picking. Get your fill of fried chicken at Mike's Farm Family Style restaurant. On your way out, make a stop at the country store and bakery for custom creations to remember your trip by.

2. The Rock Ranch, The Rock, Georgia

Just an hour south of Atlanta is the 1,500-acre working cattle ranch known as The Rock Ranch. Founded in 1989 by S. Truett Cathy, founder of Chick-fil-A, The Rock Ranch was created for families to enjoy "agritourism." Each weekend in October "Fall Family Fun Days" and "Sunday Fun Days" feature hot air balloons, smashing pumpkins, monster truck shows, and more in addition to a festive atmosphere for choosing your pumpkin.

3. Mitchell Farms, Collins, Mississippi

Mitchell Farms was started in 1960, and today boasts over 1,500 acres located "deep in the piney woods of southeast Mississippi." Every Saturday and Sunday, pick-your-own pumpkins are available, in addition to wagon ride tours, a corn maze, and even gem mining.

4. Southern Belle Farm, McDonough, Georgia

Just south of Atlanta, this 330-acre working farm has been owned by the Carter family for five generations. The farm is open daily for pumpkin picking, with additional weekend activities ranging from shooting their corn cannon to riding the cow train. Swing by the Farm Market for fresh bakery items and seasonal produce.

5. Pumpkin Hollow, Piggott, Arkansas

Nestled in Northeast Arkansas, about two hours north of Memphis, Pumpkin Hollow has something for everyone to enjoy. From pumpkin picking to the terrifyingly popular "Horror In The Hollow," kids and adults alike will have loads of fall fun at Pumpkin Hollow. Their high flying zip line will launch you over the pumpkin patch at "breakneck speed." Visit if you dare!

6. Lucky Ladd Farms, Eagleville, Tennessee

Located just south of Nashville, Lucky Ladd Farms has been home to the Ladd family's 60-acre farm since 2009. The Fall Family Fun Pumpkin Festival offers thousands of pumpkins to choose from. Spend the day exploring the corn maze and snacking on homemade caramel apples and kettle corn.

Best Pumpkin Patches in the Southwest

Pumpkins actually grow quite well in the desert climate of the Southwest. They are able to tolerate periods of hot and dry weather. For those of you in the Southwest, this means there are plenty of options to choose from when it comes to finding a great pumpkin patch. Read on for some of the best.

Photo by Studt's Pumpkin Patch

1. McCall's Pumpkin Patch, Moriarty, New Mexico

Owned and operated by the McCall family, the Pumpkin Patch is open every weekend through October for fall family fun. In addition to pumpkin picking, you can challenge yourself in the corn maze, race around the racetrack, and even test your skills on the new low ropes course. And be sure to grab a souvenir at the Country Store on your way out.

2. Studt's Pumpkin Patch, Grand Junction, Colorado

The original Studt Family pumpkin patch was started over 30 years ago. It reopened 15 years ago, as a you-pick pumpkin patch that then expanded to include their Giant Slide, Hay Mountain, and Dark Acres Haunted Maze. Visit on Oct. 27th for Pumpkin Fest, an all-day Halloween event that the whole family can enjoy.

3. Autumn at the Arboretum, Dallas, Texas

Known as "Dallas' Favorite Fall Tradition," Autumn at the Arboretum allows locals to enjoy the sites and festivities of the country without ever having to leave the city. Located at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens, the event runs through Oct. 31st. The highlight is the nationally acclaimed Pumpkin Village, featuring creative pumpkin displays utilizing over 90,000 pumpkins, gourds, and squashes.

4. Annabelle's Fun Farm, Welch, Oklahoma

Nestled in the northeastern corner of the state is Oklahoma's top-rated pumpkin patch. Pick from Annabelle's heap of pumpkins, and navigate your way out of their four-acre corn maze. Save energy for the pumpkin cannons, barnyard, bounce house, haunted house, and more.

5. Assister Punkin' Ranch, Floydada, Texas

This West Texas pumpkin patch is located just outside of Lubbock, and offers much more than just "punkins." Visit on the second Saturday in October for their special "Punkin Days" celebration. Little ones will love feeding the farm animals and riding the "Punkin Train."