Pumpkin patches are a thing in Texas. We might not have the crisp fall weather (Northern friends, we're jealous) but we have everything else that goes along with the fun of picking your own pumpkins. Here are seven tips for visiting Texas pumpkin patches with kids!
Tips for Visiting Texas Pumpkin Patches with Kids
It might not feel like fall but it can still be fun.
Whether you're going to a church pumpkin patch or a farm, make sure you read the event page or website carefully. Make sure you're clear on the hours, admission fees, and any restrictions that might apply to your group, such as pets being allowed.
Most Texas pumpkin patches offer free admission for young children but a few (usually the ones with more robust activities) charge some sort of entrance fee. Very young children are usually free.
Make sure you understand how to pay (i.e. advance or at the gate and whether credit cards are accepted.) Even if you don't usually carry cash, it's probably a good idea to have some when you're visiting a local Texas pumpkin patch. You might find a food truck or vendor that doesn't accept cards.
Make sure you ask about what types of bathrooms are available. If you have younger kids, you'll want to know if there's a changing table available in the restrooms and what you're going to do if there isn't.
2. Lay down the law ahead of time
Go over the rules that you expect your kids to follow while visiting a pumpkin patch. Many Texas pumpkin patches are located on church properties while others are located on farms. Are you going to allow your kids free range or do you expect everyone to stay together as a group? Communicate this in advance and make sure your kids observe any off-limits areas.
3. Have a plan in case you get separated
Talk to your kids about what to do if they find themselves separated from the adults. Scope out the security of the area. Can kids leave or be escorted out without their parents? Do you need to take precautions to make sure someone doesn't walk out with your young child?
I know…it's not fun to think about that sort of thing but have a sense of your surroundings before you get distracted by the pumpkins and all the other fun activities.
4. Wear comfortable, loose clothes when visiting Texas pumpkin patches
You'll be on your feet and walking a lot so definitely make sure you're wearing comfortable shoes. If you're wandering through a field to pick your pumpkins, you may encounter mud. You'll want cute, semi-coordinated outfits if you're planning to take photos but make sure you're wearing something you can all feel comfy enough in to have a good time.
If you're planning on taking fall family photos and really want that fall aesthetic – cozy plaids, knit beanies, and booties – you might want to consider an outfit change after you get your Instagrammable snap because it's usually just too darn hot for those kinds of clothes during the season that passes for fall in Texas.
5. Take sunscreen, water, and snacks
Even though we're all probably coveting our friends' pictures in cozy fall sweaters and blanket scarves, odds are you're not going to encounter crisp fall weather while exploring pumpkin patches in Texas.
6. Practice good hand hygiene
A pumpkin patch is a high-touch area. Lots of little fingers are touching the pumpkins that don't get purchased and even in the best of times, this is a pretty germy place, if you think about it.
7. Consider taking a wagon…
…especially if you plan on buying a lot of pumpkins. Wagons also come in handy for toting tired kids, backpacks, and other gear.
Even though my kids are older and past the “ride in the wagon” stage, wagons are really handy things to have and I've never regretted bringing mine somewhere.
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