Before you can make your memories of carving the perfect jack-o-lantern with your family.
Before you proudly display your creation on your front porch (and, let’s be honest, on your social media).
Before any of that, you have to find the perfect pumpkin.
These days, that means going all out for an epic pumpkin patch experience. You’re probably going to make a full day out of it — and you want to squeeze every precious ounce of autumn wholesomeness that you can possibly get.
We’ve got three weekends left between now and Halloween, so start making your plans for fall family fun in the DMV. Here are the best places to find the perfect pumpkin. And a lot more.
Maryland’s Best Pumpkin Patches
The 42nd annual Butler’s Orchard Pumpkin Festival is in full swing. It’s open Wednesday through Sunday each week in Montgomery County, and it’s so popular that reservations are strongly recommended. Butler’s Orchard has it all. Pumpkins, of course, but also live music, a corn maze, a straw maze (for the younger ones), farm animals, jump pads, pony rides, face painting and more. Also … a pumpkin cannon.
Prince George’s County’s best pumpkin patch experience is at Montpelier Farms, conveniently located right along US-301 in Upper Marlboro. Open through November 6, Montpelier Farms has a “big ole pumpkin patch” not to mention a seemingly endless string of activities. Try the 7-acre interactive corn maze (by flashlight at dark) or squeeze in a game of pumpkin bowling or barnyard basketball. On chilly days, warm up by the bonfire before heading home to carve your pumpkin.
South Mountain Creamery Pumpkin Patch
South Mountain Creamery is well established as one of Maryland’s top agritourism destinations. Up until now, it’s been all about touring this welcoming, working farm and enjoying the farm fresh milk and ice cream. Now they’ve added a full pumpkin patch experience. Enjoy live music, a corn maze, hay rides and delicious eats from local food trucks at this picturesque farm.
Virginia’s Best Pumpkin Patches
Belvedere Plantation has everything the little ones could ask for. It starts with a massive inflatable jumping pillow and just keeps going from there. On to the zip lines, the slides and pedal cart course. Keep going to the swine speedway (aka pig races) and finally take a hay ride to the patch where your perfect pumpkin awaits.
Convenient to D.C. and all of Northern Virginia, Cox Farms guarantees a good time. With an impressive collection of slides of all sizes, it’s basically a farm amusement park. Check out the Dino Slide, the Volcano Slide, Barn Slide, the Mountain Slide and the Castle Slide. Take a nature hike, watch a cow milking demonstration or hand-feed the goats. Then roam the patch and pick the best pumpkin you can find.
From a “farm amusement park” to an actual amusement park, we’re thinking a little outside the box on this one. On Saturdays and Sundays through October 30, join Snoopy and the rest of the Peanuts gang for pumpkin painting, hay mazes, games, rides and “not-so-scary” family fun.