Pumpkin Patches and fun in the Sacramento Area

pumpkinsBy Heather Crivellone

October is always full of fun events and activities at our house. We love this time of year- the chill in the air, the leaves changing color, the caramel apples and the pumpkins galore! We love visiting new pumpkin patches and checking out the scarecrows, decorations, hay stacks, mazes and gourds. We love everything about this time of year.. And if you are trying to find a place to take the kids for some “fall fun”, check out this list of local pumpkin patches and try and hit up one or a couple of them for some cheap family entertainment.

Dave’s Pumpkin Patch– 3010 Burrows Ave, West Sacramento Opening Sept. 28th for the holiday season.
Hours: Sun-Thurs: 10am- dusk, Fri-Sat: 10am-9pm
*Zipline, Jumping Pillow, Pumpkin Princess Castle, Corn Boxes, Hay Rides, Pony Rides, Hay Maze, Corn Maze

The Pumpkin Farm– 7736 Old Auburn Blvd. Citrus Heights
Opening Oct. 4-31
Hours: 9am-6pm (Closed Mondays)
*Haunted Barn, Farm Zoo, Hay rides, Tower Slides, Corn Maze, Train Ride, Go-Kart Trains, Jumping Castle

Bastiao Farms Goblin Gardens– 3845 El Centro Rd, Sacramento/Natomas
Opening Sept 29- Oct. 31
Hours: 10am-7pm 7 days a week
*Corn Maze, Hay Bale Pyramid, Hay Maze, Slides, Hayrides, Toddler Pedal Car Track, Sunflower Pit

Bishop’s Pumpkin Farm– 1415 Pumpkin Lane, Wheatland
Open Sept. 21- Oct 31
Hours: 9am-7pm weekdays,  9am-8pm weekends
*Hay Rides, Train rides, Coyote Mountain, Pig Races, Play areas, Petting Zoo

Fog Willow– 11011 Cecatra Drive, Wilton
Open Oct 1-31
Hours: Monday- Friday;  11:30-6pm  Saturday and Sunday; 9:30am-6pm
*Petting Zoo, Adventure Course, Hay Rides, BBQ

Roemer Pumpkin Patch– 6851 Hedge Avenue, Sacramento
Open Sept. 29-Oct 31st.
Hours: Mon.- Fri:  2pm-5pm Sat-Sun 9am-5pm
* Corn Maze, Hay Rides, Hay Maze

Uncle Ray’s Pumpkin Patch– 19376 Old River Rd, West Sacramento
Open Oct.1st-31st Monday- Friday 10am-5pm, Sat-Sun. 10-6
*Tractor Rides, Hay Maze, Corn Maze

Cool Patch Pumpkins- 6585 Milk Farm Rd, Dixon
Open Oct 1-31
*Corn Maze, Kid Zone, Scarecrow Contest, Pedal Track

I hope this helps you out as a little guide for some of our local pumpkin patches. This isn’t a complete list- but, hopefully enough to get you started and on your search for the “Great Pumpkin”

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Bring the Family Out to the Inaugural Farm-to-Fork Festival

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The inaugural Sacramento Farm-to-Fork Festival will be held from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 28, on Capitol Mall between Third and Seventh streets.

The free festival – the largest zero-waste event in the country – will feature a selection of everything Sacramento has to offer in farm-to-fork eating. From local chefs, farmers and other food producers to food trucks, live music, festivalgoers can expect to learn about food from its source to the plate.  All of that will be accompanied by food demonstrations, live music, a beer garden and a wine pavilion.

Wondering what there is for the kiddos?  Radio Disney will be keeping your little ones entertained between 4th and 5th streets while Chipotle Mexican Grill is sponsoring a kids’ zone at 5th and Capitol.  Nearby, you’ll view farm animals on display.

Chipotle will showcase the way it sources many of its ingredients from local farmers, and Caterpillar will showcase two tractors. 4-H members will be exhibiting 12 animals, the California Dairy Council will have a dairy cow present, and the California Department of Food and Agriculture will educate about invasive species and California agriculture. Play the agriculture trivia game, make a bracelet of Sacramento County’s top commodities, and learn how agriculture plays a part in your life by tracing items you use every day to the crop they come from at the California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom exhibit.  Ask about free educational resources that are available to teachers.

For a map of the event, click here.  For more information on Farm-to-Fork Week, click here.

Weekend Family Fun

Wow.  Well, there is SO much going on this weekend, so you certainly won’t be hurting for fun things to do!  There’s the Pirates & Pumpkins Festival, Smithsonian Free Museum Day, Fairytale Town’s ScholarShare Book Festival, the inaugural Farm to Fork Family Festival, and so much more!  Come out and join us at one of these events…or several.  Hope you see you around!

farm_to_fork_logo_new_category9/28 – Farm to Fork Festival – Join us for a day-long, free festival – the largest zero-waste event in the country.  This event will feature a selection of everything Sacramento has to offer in farm-to-fork eating. From local chefs, farmers and other food producers to food trucks, animal displays, a kids’ zone and live music, festivalgoers can expect to learn about food from its source to the plate.

ScholarShare Children's Book Festival 3_Photo by Dina Heidrich9/28 – ScholarShare Children’s Book Festival at Fairytale Town – All aboard the reading train! The ScholarShare Children’s Book Festival features readings and presentations by children’s book authors and illustrators, storytelling performances, and hands-on literacy activities.  Sherri Duskey Rinker, the New York Times bestselling author of Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site and Steam Train, Dream Train, will headline the two-day Festival. This year’s lineup of 12 featured authors also includes Ahmet Zappa, son of late musician/composer Frank Zappa, and Jennifer Fosberry.

MDL_300x1509/28 – Smithsonian Museum Day Live! – In the spirit of Smithsonian Museums, who offer free admission everyday, Museum Day Live! is an annual event hosted by Smithsonian magazine in which participating museums across the country open their doors to anyone presenting a Museum Day Ticket… for free.  Participating Sacramento museums:  Aerospace Museum of California, California Automobile Museum, California State Military Museum, and California State Railroad Museum, Maidu Museam & Historic Site, and The California Museum.

933907_10151684899257017_304660982_n_category9/28 – Country Music Festival – Come join 101.9TheWolf for a day of fun for the whole family! Featuring Andy Gibson, Joel Crouse, Dylan Scott, the Bush Hawgs, Ash Bowers, and Catch 22, enjoy 7 hours of live country music, a kids zone and a beer garden to support work for Warriors, Orangevale Food Bank and New Hope Street Ministries! Enjoy great food, drinks, a huge fun zone and great music at this second annual event!

9/28 – 2013 Romanian Festival – You are invited to the biggest Romanian festival of the year. This festival includes authentic Romanian food, Romanian folk dancing and music, Romanian singers and instrumentalists, various art displays, and much more entertainment for all ages.

395231_609018252443139_1692423646_n_category9/28 – Folsom Family Expo – A variety of family oriented activities will be featured throughout the day. Visitors will be able to enjoy face painting, outdoor games, clowns, taekwondo demonstrations, bounce houses, and so much more. Attendees will also receive free admission into the Folsom Zoo for the day. Thousands are expected to attend for a day of family and fun!

excursiontrain_category9/27 – 9/29 – Excursion Train Rides presented by the California State Railroad Museum – All aboard for the California State Railroad Museum’s popular excursion railroad—the Sacramento Southern Railroad—as it officially returns to operation for its 30th consecutive season! Train ride guests delight in the sights, smells, and sounds of an authentic, working locomotive as it rolls along the levees of the Sacramento River for a six-mile, 40-minute roundtrip excursion.

pirates_category9/28 – 9/29 – Pirates & Pumpkins Festival – Ahoy mates! Party and play with pirates along the Sacramento River. There will be a spooky pumpkin patch, you can fire off a real catapult, see cannon battles, belly dancers, live music by Skip Henderson & John Blakemore, the Mad Maggies, and the Black Irish Band. Enjoy savory foods from ports around the globe. There will be games, contests, and shopping.  Join the Pirate Krews: Rogues of the Golden Coast, Tales of the Seven Seas, The Pirates of Reno, and the Red Hat Pirates for some seafaring fun!  Bring lawn chairs and your spirit of adventure to this one of a kind event. There is lots of shade and a misting system…..Arrrrggggg!

reptile_show_category9/28 – 9/29 – 16th Annual Reptile Show at the Sacramento Convention Center – The Sacramento Reptile Show is back for its 16th year. The 2012 event was the best yet with more than 15,000 people in attendance and more than 3,000 reptiles on display. For 2013 they have brought back the ever popular venomous reptile display featuring more than 45 venomous species from around the world including King Cobras and Black Mambas. Brad’s World Reptile will also be setting up a reptile education center to teach you about the world of reptiles. And, who can forget Izod the Alligator? Izod and Wild Things will be back to give you an opportunity to meet a 10ft 100lb alligator.

969182_638732476154510_654852457_n_category9/29 – Mustard Seed Spin Kids Ride – Kids of all ages are invited to cycle for fun, fitness, and philanthropy at the 9th annual Mustard Seed Spin. There will be 5, 13, and 25 mile routes, bike and helmet checks, safety booth, lunch by Dos Coyotes and Hagen’s Freeze, rest stops, T-shirts, silent auction, and a bike raffle!

Disney on Ice: Passport to Adventure Comes to Sleep Train Arena

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Who’s your favorite Disney character?  Is it Ariel from the Little Mermaid? How about Peter Pan? Or maybe good old Mickey and Minnie Mouse?  Well, whoever it is, you just may see them in person at Sleep Train Arena, very soon.  That’s right, Disney on Ice: Passport to Adventure is coming to town!

“Don’t miss the action when Disney on Ice presents Passport to Adventure comes to Sacramento’s Sleep Train Arena, October 9th through the 13th.  Journey to four far-away lands without ever leaving you seat!  Arrive to Africa to see the Lion King; Swim Under the Sea with Ariel and Sebastian; Fly to Never Never Land with Peter Pan and Tinker Bell; and, Hula in Hawaii with Lilo and Stitch!  Get your tickets now at Ticketmaster Retail Locations, Tickemaster.com, the Box Office, or call 1-800-745-3000.”

Would you like to go?  Would you like to win some tickets?  Well, we have two family passes to give away!  If you would like a chance at winning a family pack of 4 tickets, you’ll need to correctly answer this trivia question:

Which of these Disney princesses is actually a princess by birth?  Cinderella, Belle, Ariel or Mulan. 

If you know the answer, let us know by commenting on this post.  All those who answer the question correctly will have a chance to win a family pass.  Two winners will be randomly chosen on Friday, September 27, 2013.  Good luck!

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of Year… and Bishops Pumpkin Farm is Open for the Season!

Bishops-Pumpkin-FarmBy Heather Crivellone

It’s that time of year… when the air starts to get crisp, children start watching out for the “ghosts and goblins”, harvest colors are in full bloom and the pumpkins are ready for picking to be carved into Jack-O-Lanterns.

The Sacramento area has a wide variety of pumpkin patches and farms that host events and fun for fall activities. Many are opening October 1st for the Halloween season… but my personal favorite, the “Disneyland” of all pumpkin patches (as I like to call it) is Bishop’s Pumpkin Farm and it opened this weekend, September 21 for the harvest season!  It’s located in Wheatland (about 45 minutes north of Sacramento)- and it’s well worth the drive!

Now, I may be partial to Bishop’s since I grew up in that area and have been visiting them since I was a child.  It’s really quite nostalgic for me, as I’m able to take my children where I used to go (although it has grown so much over the years- I hardly recognize it from my past!).

They have everything to keep you and the kids entertained (literally) ALL day long.

Hay Rides? Yep! Train Rides? You bet! A Petting Zoo? Of Course! How about Pig Races? They have them! And if that’s not enough to keep you busy then how about multiple kids’ zones with slides and areas with things to climb on, through, around and under. Or you can have your kids explore and climb “Coyote Mountain”, run through a crazy corn maze, and enjoy live entertainment.

They even have shopping for us moms and grandmas (I always find the “must have” holiday decor here). And don’t worry- they have plenty of food options at the PigaDeli Square that you are guaranteed to NOT go hungry.

And since this is of course a pumpkin patch- don’t forget to pick out the perfect pumpkin to take home… there are so many to choose from- it may take a while so prepare yourself for an entire day of fun.

Bishop’s is located at 1415 Pumpkin Lane in Wheatland (about 45 minutes north of Downtown Sacramento). They are open September 21- October 31. September hours are 9am-6pm daily and October hours are 9am-7pm Sunday -Thursday and 9am-8pm Friday and Saturday. Admission into Bishop’s is free.  Parking is $10 Friday- Sunday, and free during the week.

So check your calendars and find a day to spend with the family out at Bishop’s pumpkin farm. If it isn’t already- it will soon become a family fall tradition!

Bishop's Pumpkin Farm Collage 1

Weekend Family Fun

Fall is finally here, and there are a host of activities to help you get out and celebrate.  Join the Maidu Museum for a family campfire, search for fall foliage at the Discovery Museum, experience hands-on history at Sutter’s Fort, go birdwatching at the Nature Center and more!

9/20 – 9/21 – 9th Annual Mediterranean Food & Music Festival – This festival celebrates Middle Eastern, Greek, and American culture with  music, food, and more! A Middle Eastern dance group will perform throughout the day along with the Jodette Belly Dancing Academy. The evening will have Hafli (a dance party) with live music,  lamb on the outdoor roaster, falafel sandwiches, shawarma (gyros) chicken and lamb sandwiches, stuffed grape leaves, tabouli salad, houmos, baklava, and much more. Take a memorable photo and dress in Middle Eastern attire, drink arabic coffee from a damatask cup, and dance, dance, dance the night away!

excursion_train_rides_category9/20 – 9/22 – Diesel Days at the California State Railroad Museum – The California State Parks and the California State Railroad Museum is offering special train rides on the Sacramento Southern Railroad featuring two visually exciting and gracefully styled diesel locomotives. Especially when these eye-catching diesels are in operation, guests of all ages will enjoy taking a memorable and relaxing weekend excursion train ride that is reminiscent of train travel from an earlier era.

Those aboard are treated to a six-mile, 45-minute roundtrip excursion along the levees of the Sacramento River. The train features a combination of vintage closed coaches with comfortable seats and open-air “gondolas” with bench style seating.

littlemermaidjr_category9/20 – 9/22 – Disney’s The Little Mermaid – Disney’s beloved movie gets a musical stage adaptation in The Little Mermaid, an interactive treat for the whole family performed by local actors between the ages of 5-18.  Ariel the mermaid has always dreamed of seeing what lies beyond the sea. When she spies a handsome prince who lives on land she is willing to give up the life she’s known to be with him. She makes a deal with Ursula the sea witch to become human, but she must sacrifice her beautiful voice in return. Can she win over the prince, even without a voice?

campfireatnight_category9/20 – Campfire at the Maidu Museum and Historic Site – Sit under the stars at our outdoor amphitheater to enjoy native stories told by a local Elder around the campfire. We’ll provide roasting sticks and marshmallows for a sweet program’s end to this fun family event.

final_wreck_it_ralph_category9/20 – Movie in Fremont Park: Wreck It Ralph –  Councilmen Steve Hansen, CADA and Friends of Fremont Park will be hosting “Movie in Fremont Park” with a showing of Wreck it Ralph at dusk. Come early to enjoy all the pre-movie activities and fun!  There will be live music by The Bell Boys, local area craft vendors with Getty Owl Foundation, Willie’s Woodshop, plus face painting for kids. Drewski’s Hot Rod Kitchen will be on-site for your movie and pre-movie needs.

suttersfort_category9/21 – Hands-On History: Harvest Time at Sutter’s Fort – When John Sutter first arrived in California in 1839, his dream was to build an agricultural empire. While it took many years for California’s agricultural industry to recover from the impacts of the Gold Rush, it is now one of the primary breadbaskets of the world. Fort guests are invited to step back in time during the next “Hands on History” event that celebrates harvest time at the Fort.

Visitors will help thresh and winnow wheat, turn the stones on the grist mill, make rope, sling a lariat and learn to use a lasso. Guests can also make an eye-opening trip to the doctor to learn how a cut arm, bruised head, or swollen check was treated. There will also be hands-on activities for young and old and history hunts to complete and earn a free coloring book. In addition, there will be a display of guns and weapons from the Gold Rush era and demonstrations of black powder weaponry in action — including the crowd-favorite firing of Sutter’s cannon

great_train_robbery3_category9/21 – Great Train Robbery – Show by The Old West Legends. The 3.5-hour trip includes a train ride, barbecue lunch and western show. During numerous western characters entertain the guests.  Look out at Robber’s Roost where outlaws lurk. Later on you’ll stop at Elkhorn Park for a delicious western buffet lunch.

Flying High at the Nature Center9/21 – Solstice and Beginning Bird Watching at the Effie Yeaw Nature Center – Fall is here and with it comes a variety of bird species passing through as they head south for the winter. Join us for a hike in the Nature Study Area to observe the start of this wonderful season and to help you learn about our birds. No experience is necessary and all ages are welcome.

Stamp-a-rama9/21 – 9/22 – Fall Foliage Fun at the Discovery Museum – Welcome Fall by trekking around the grounds and learning to identify trees using the nature trail guide. The Sacramento Tree Foundation is here to visit and work with you on learning some tree-rific facts. Families will make leaf headbands to celebrate the first weekend of Autumn. Admission includes: the Space Quest! exhibit, a planetarium show (1pm & 3pm, ages 4 & older) and an animal presentation (noon & 2pm, all ages).  Admission includes: – The Space Quest! exhibit – Live animal presentation (Noon & 2pm, all ages) – Planetarium show (1pm & 3pm, ages 4+).

img_3015_copy_category9/22 – Creepy Crawley Creature Feature – It’s time to bug out! This zany entomology expo showcases hundreds of bugs, from terrifying tarantulas to beautiful butterflies. Test your bug bravery with Fear Factor inspired games, fun crafts, and yummy food (including incredible edible insects). Join in a tour to see all the creepy crawlies and the rest of STAR Eco Station’s rescued exotic wildlife.