One of my single most favourite things about Autumn is pumpkins. We eat loads of them, I decorate the house with mini ones and we carve a fair few for Halloween. And we love to pick our own. It’s just not the same picking one up from Tesco with your weekly shop, all perfectly round and perfectly orange. So we were thrilled when we were asked to go to Farmer Copley’s Pumpkin Picking Festival. Nothing beats tramping through a muddy field, deliberating over which colour, size and shape you want to take home.
I don’t think it’s any secret that we love Farmer Copley’s. We have had so much fun there over summer and I’m so glad the fun is carrying on now into Autumn. On Sunday, after Luca’s riding lesson we headed straight for that pumpkin field. It was absolutely pouring down with rain so when we arrived we decided to grab some food in the cafe. Hoping that the huge black clouds would blow over. After an early start to the day we were getting hungry again so we all ordered a Farmer’s breakfast. A little one for Luca, a large one for Ant and a harvester (veggie) one for me. I only managed to take one photo of mine as by the time I’d got my camera ready the boys had already started to demolish theirs. They definitely need a little more training.
By the time we had polished off our breakfasts, which as always were utterly delicious, we had very full tummies ready for the mammoth task ahead of us (what, it’s important you make the right pumpkin choice). We ventured up to the main festival area and fields. Luckily, the rain had stopped by this point and I could spy a tiny bit of blue sky heading our way.
As we rounded the corner we found the tractor ride. Luca decided against as it had been raining and he didn’t want a wet bum. Can’t say I blame him. Instead we went to the corn cannons! These were brilliant, shooting corn on the cobs at pumpkin targets. We missed every one but it was great fun trying.
Taking Farmer Copley’s advice we took our wheelbarrow to the very far end of the massive field to start our hunt for our perfect pumpkin. We found tiny ones, huge ones and everything in between.
We found orange ones, green ones, white ones, yellow ones and red ones. Round ones, tall ones, skinny ones, flat ones and even the one I’d been hoping for, a light blue one! Ok, I’m fibbing slightly, we didn’t find one much to my dismay but Farmer C himself went and found one for me. Yay!!
Once we had whittled our wheelbarrow down to a few select ones that we would take home, we headed to the washing station to get rid of all the mud and bugs and to pay. The prices start at £2.50 for a small one, £3.50 for a medium and £4.50 for a large. Anything over 10kg is £8.50. To work out your size there are some tables with different holes to pop your pumpkin through, this tell you if it is small, medium or large. We ended up taking one small, three medium and a large. Told you I love them.
Then it was onto the pumpkin carving tent to make a design whilst the witches watched over us. Luca and Ant decided on a Pacman and Ghost for ours this year. Nice and simple as Luca doesn’t have the patience to wait for a fancy intricate design yet. Although I think has big plans for the large one when it gets to halloween.
Once the boys were happy with their design we sent Ant back to the car with the pumpkins whilst we explored the rest of the festival. Luca made a beeline for the candyfloss stall before heading to the story teepee. Inside we all sat around on bales of straw to listen to Halloween and pumpkin related stories told by a lovely lady.
The kids sat in a circle on the bales covered in blankets whilst she read to them, I think it was my favourite part of the whole festival, such a sweet touch. There was also a few fairground rides like a pumpkin rodeo, face painting, pumpkin painting, another tractor ride and some creepy crawlies. We stayed for a few stories as she really captured the essence of storytelling.
After that it was back to the cafe for a coffee and a quick look around the farm shop for some yummy goodies to take home. Oh and Luca managed to get a broom out of us too.
Our pumpkins now have pride of place outside our door, making it feel really seasonal. We will carve a few more of them as we get closer to Halloween as they only last about 5 days once they are carved. We want some in our windows for the big day itself.
At bedtime Luca told me he had a really good day. When I asked him what his favourite part of the day was he replied, “washing the pumpkins!” Weird kid. I think it’s safe to say we would highly recommend a visit to Farmer Copley’s Pumpkin Picking Festival. Just remember to wear wellies and go to the furthest corners of the fields for better picking. Pumpkin picking is running until the 31st October. The full festival is from the 22nd. For more details you can go to Farmer Copley’s facebook page or website.
Thank you again to Farmer Copley for inviting us to another great day out. We had a brilliant time.
*Disclaimer – We were very kindly given a VIP Pass for Farmer Copley’s Pumpkin Picking festival for the day and therefore most of the activities and food were free. However, we did still pay for a few extra pumpkins, candyfloss and items we bought from the shop. All opinions are as always honest and my own.*