There’s no rule that you have to visit a pumpkin patch in October. But we Midwesterners can hardly resist that urge that wells up in us at the first sign of color in the trees to don a flannel and catch the next hayride into the vines. If you find yourself on the north side of Indy, that quintessential fall pumpkin patch experience is waiting for you at Smith Family Farms.
There is so much to love about Smith Family Farms Pumpkin Patch. The laid-back atmosphere, cute kids’ activities, and refreshingly affordable admission rates make this Pendleton farm a favorite for my family. The patch itself is so sincere that my son was convinced this must be where the Great Pumpkin will appear on Halloween night. If your porch is still lacking its autumn pumpkin decor, consider this your sign to head to Pendleton this weekend!
October Weekends on the Farm
The Smith family has been farming their 2,300 acres in Pendleton for eight generations. Several of these generations still live in homes spaced throughout the property. But on weekends in October, the public is invited to play and celebrate all things fall at this beautiful farm. While much of the acreage is dedicated to corn, alfalfa, soybeans, and wheat, a large plot grows pumpkins and a sprinkling of specialty gourds. Nearby, families have access to a playground, snack bar, petting zoo, and several sandboxes and sensory tables full of corn kernels.
Catch live music from 1:30-3:30 on both Saturday and Sunday. The vibe here is decidedly chill, making Smith Family Farm a fantastic option for younger children or those who prefer a more relaxed experience than you might find at some of the bigger fall pumpkin patch destinations.
At Easter, we have egg hunts. In the fall, we have the treasure hunt through the pumpkin patch to find the gourd that is biggest, most vibrant, or has the most personality. Each generation seems to take to the excitement of this challenge instinctively, even if the definition of the perfect pumpkin varies between the hunters.
While most of the pumpkins at Smith Family Farm are classic orange carving pumpkins, there are vines bearing specialty pumpkins and gourds scattered amongst the jack-o-lantern variety. Keep your eyes peeled for lumpy bumpy pumpkins, round white pumpkins, and wide, flat, light green gourds. The pumpkin patch is easily accessible from the parking lot and the farm provides plenty of wagons for hauling your finds from the patch to your car.
Pumpkin prices range from $3-$10, depending on size. All specialty gourds and pumpkins are $6. Mini pumpkins and gourds, whether foraged from the field or selected from the farm stand, are $1 each.
Playground and Photo Ops
After your time at the pumpkin patch, be sure to check out all the fun activities available for your family. My kids would have happily played on the playground for hours. This classic swingset has a spinning tire swing underneath the main platform, a slide, a rock wall, and a horse-shaped tire swing. Giant tractor tires are embedded in the ground nearby for climbing on and crawling through. Toddlers may be content to simply push around one of the many jumbo dump truck toys provided, and the preschool crowd will appreciate the adorable playhouse with a fully stocked kitchen of plastic food.
Near the playground are several photo ops. Haybales and colorful mums adorn a pretty backdrop of wood pallets and fall leaves. A classic face-in-the-hole setup decorated in pumpkins awaits your crew. Little ones can mount a horse fashioned from a barrel and an old saddle and try to lasso a pretend steer made from a log. Parents can find a place to relax in full view of the playground on hay bales surrounding a tree in this area.
Directly next to the playground is a fenced yard where visitors can view goats and cows. Head inside the large white barn to see a variety of other adorable animals. Meet Bacon and Pork Chop, the resident pigs, and Mama and Freckles, the donkeys. You may also encounter a llama, cows, turkeys, bunnies, and chicks. Look up as you enter the barn! We realized as we were headed out that there were chickens roosting in the rafters just above our heads the whole time.
The farm does offer pony rides for an additional $3 fee. During our visit, no staff member was available to facilitate the rides and the pony seemed to be enjoying his day off in the pasture.
Hop aboard the tractor-drawn trailer for a tour of the entire farm. Guests sit on hay bales of alfalfa grown in fields you pass as you ride. A member of the Smith family acted as tour guide during our journey and pointed out homes on the property, grain bins, and various crops while sharing the history of the farm.
Corn Maze and Soybean Maze
You aren’t likely to get lost in the Smith Family Farm corn maze, but the trail offers a pleasant walk through the stalks, especially if you’re visiting on a beautiful fall day. Expect to spend 20 to 30 minutes navigating your way from start to finish. For a shorter experience, explore the soybean prairie maze beside the pumpkin patch while learning fun agricultural facts from informative signs posted along the path.
Smith Family Farm Pumpkin Patch offers a snack bar with classic concessions for purchase. You’ll have to look elsewhere for your cider donuts and pie, but you can get a caramel apple, burgers, nachos, or other kid-friendly favorites. Everything is very fairly priced. Once you’ve made your purchases, the barn that houses the snack bar offers indoor and outdoor seating.
Got a kid who could spend hours playing in sand or other sensory materials? They’ll love the multiple sandboxes and corn bins throughout the property. A few games like giant tic-tac-toe and a pumpkin ring toss were set up for guests to enjoy. Kids can also climb a small-scale straw mountain adjacent to the pumpkin patch.
Portable toilets are available near the parking lot.
Saturdays and Sundays in October: 11 am-5 pm
Contact the farm to schedule weekday field trips, subject to availability.
$6 per person
Ages 2 and under are FREE
7055 W 675 S