Yesterday I decided to visit another pumpkin patch on my list, but that didn't happen. Instead, I ended up visiting three others; Irvine Regional Park in Orange, Tanaka Farms in Irvine, and Pumpkinpalooza at Zoomar's Petting Zoo in San Juan Capistrano.
STOP 1: IRVINE PARK
Irvine (Regional) Park's pumpkin patch (1 Irvine Park Road, Orange - (714) 997-3968) is an extravaganza. It has a distinctive county fair atmosphere to it -- and was absolutely swarming with people. This is only the second year they've had it, so it'll be interesting to see how many people are there next year!
The pumpkin patch itself is free to enter, but there is an entrance fee to Irvine Regional Park of $3.00 M-F, $5.00 S-S per auto. Walk in for free.
The events include the pumpkin patch, naturally, plus train rides, a costume contest (ages 0 to 12), hayrides, pumpkin moon bounce, hay maze, pony rides, picture stands, pumpkin weigh off, petting zoo, face painting (weekends only), and a little haunted house.
Next Saturday (27th) there will be a costume contest. All children who enter the contest will get a free train ride at the end of the day for the costume parade.
This one is definitely worth checking out if you want to have some great Halloween fun with the kids.
STOP 2: TANAKA FARMS
The next stop was over to Irvine (the city) to Tanaka Farms pumpkin patch (5380-3/4 University Drive, Irvine - (949) 653-2100). For the health conscious, Tanaka's happens to be Orange County's largest organic farm. (Pick your own strawberries, watermelons, or pumpkins depending on the time of year!)
They have a nicely laid out pumpkin patch that includes hay bales, bouncy houses, pumpkin patch tour, wagon rides, a petting zoo, pick your own vegetables, corn maze and of course pick your own pumpkins. If you're on that end of town, I would definitely recommend taking time to visit.
You can read more about Tanaka Farms here. They have a very interesting story.
I plan to go back to take the different tours and pick my own watermelons and strawberries - and for now, I'll go back to pick a pumpkin!
STOP 3: PUMPKINPALOOZA (at ZOOMAR'S)
The day's getting a bit long in the tooth at this point, but I wasn't ready to give it up just yet, so we headed down to San Juan Capistrano to see one last pumpkin patch.
The Pumpkinpalooza at Zoomar's Petting Zoo (31791 Los Rios, San Juan Capistrano - (949) 831-6550) was a great ending to a great day. It is really decorated well, giving it a hometown feel, and includes a craft section, games, cornstalks, gourds, a hay maze, train table, sand box, kettle corn - oh, and pumpkins. There is a charge to enter this pumpkin patch, but it's only 25 cents. (Not quite sure of the theory behind this amount)
The pumpkin patch hours here are 9-5:30 M-F, and 9-5 S-S. I knew we'd get there late, but I figured I could check it out anyway - I was right. The patch is fenced off with cornstalks, but I just poked my camera through them and got a couple shots.
Added bonus for this pumpkin patch is Zoomar's Petting Zoo right next door, so for another small fee ($2.00 for kids, $5.00 for adults, $4.00 seniors) you can have a fun time checking out all the animals.