As Sonoma Wine Country sets into the fall mood, the mornings have a crispness in the air but the days still turn warm. Summer warm. The leaves are just starting to turn, the grapes are being harvested, apples are still being picked, and picturesque fields are given over to pumpkins.
Family farms feature a variety of gourds for your autumnal mood and Halloween creations. You could find a kid fest, a down home farm experience, do a little wine tasting, and find the perfect pumpkins for your seasonal decor.
Most pumpkin patches are open through October. Check their websites for different September start dates.
Tolay Fall Festival, Petaluma
At this fun family event, you can take a hay ride to a giant pumpkin patch and explore a "creatures" barn full of snakes, spiders, and birds of prey. Seasonal activities include a straw maze, farm crafts like candle-dipping and wool-carding, and a pumpkin seed spitting contest. Local vendors offer a fine selection of food and refreshments.
Oct. 13-14 and 20-21, 2018
11 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Tolay Lake Regional Park
5869 Lakeville Highway, at the end of Cannon Lane
Grandma's Pumpkin Patch, Healdsburg
Lots of fun can be found at this family farm. Stroll through the pumpkins, pet farm animals, climb the hay stacks, run through the maze, and check out vintage tractors. Take along lunch and linger at one of the shaded picnic tables.
Open daily from 10 a.m. until dusk
17740 Healdsburg Avenue
Preston Farm and Winery Pumpkin Patch, Healdsburg
Pick your own pumpkins, gourds, and winter squash at the Preston Farm in gorgeous Dry Creek Valley and then enjoy some wine in the tasting room. This is a lovely place for a picnic on a warm wine country autumn day. Call ahead and schedule a farm tour, offered Tuesday through Saturday.
Open daily 11 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
9282 West Dry Creek Road
McClelland's Dairy Pumpkin Patch, Petaluma
Each fall, this family dairy farm offers a big selection of pumpkins along with tractor rides, a petting farm, a hay maze, a haunted house, a pumpkin blaster, and a lot more. Lunch and snacks can be purchased and farm tours are available.
Friday, 1 p.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, 10 a.m. - 9:30 p.m.
Sunday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
6475 Bodega Avenue
More than five acres of home-grown pumpkins, squash, and gourds present a huge selection to pick your own variety. Have fun with seasonal activities like the huge straw mountain and corn kernel sand box. Try to find the single exit out of the four-acre corn maze - it can take 45 minutes to complete! On Fridays and Saturdays, take a flashlight to try the maze at night. This year, they have added second story viewing platforms inside the corn maze. Admission and parking are free.
Sunday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
450 Stony Point Road
The Great Peter Pumpkin Patch, Petaluma
At Petaluma Creamery's rural working dairy and farm, you'll find all kinds of varieties of pumpkins, baby animals, farm activities, hay rides, and a hay maze. Taste wonderful Spring Hill cheeses and enjoy their homemade ice cream.
Open daily from 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.
4235 Spring Hill Road
Pronzini Pumpkin Patch, Petaluma
A variety of pumpkins and corn are growing at Pronzini's, for all ages to enjoy acres of fun this fall. Families can enjoy hay rides, bouncy houses and slides, a petting zoo, corn kernel box, and the Haunted Trail.
Check their website for timings.
3795 Adobe Road
Punky's Pumpkin Patch, Santa Rosa
Families can enjoy fun activities and choose from a generous selection of pumpkins, squash, and heirloom winter squash - grown by the Gutzman Family. This pumpkin patch is located at Santa Rosa's Luther Burbank Center.
Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.
50 Mark West Springs Road
The Santa Rosa Patch, Santa Rosa
This family run pumpkin patch has eight acres of pumpkins and a huge corn maze with short or long routes to follow. There are lots of activities here, including a huge jumpy pillow, inflatable slide and bounce house, petting farm, hay rides, pumpkin blasters. There is a charge for admission and various wristbands are for sale for enjoying all that’s on offer. Special guests like Moana and Spiderman will be making appearances on the weekends.
Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Sunday, 9 a.m. to 8: p.m.
5157 Stony Point Road
Find more info about things to do in Sonoma County.
Written by Sonoma Insider Jennifer Jones.