6 local farms, orchards perfect for picking pumpkins this fall

Figuring out where to pick your pumpkin is arguably the most important decision you’ll make this fall. Pumpkin spice lattes and apple pies don’t last a week, but a freshly picked pumpkin is a month, sometimes a year commitment.

Luckily, we’ve found farms and orchards to help solve this dilemma and provide advice on how to choose the perfect pumpkin.

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Visitors to Rufener Hilltop Farms in Suffield can throw pumpkins at old cars using a pneumatic cannon.

Rufener Hilltop Farms

Visitors have over 40,000 pumpkins of various shapes and sizes to choose from this year at Rufener Hilltop Farms.

To acquire a pumpkin, guests must choose from four packages ranging from $7 to $15 depending on the additional activities they choose. Passes cease to be sold at 5:30 p.m. each day.

Farm attractions include a 12-acre corn maze, corn pond and pumpkin cannon. For those looking for fall decorations, Rufener also sells corn stalks and straw bales.

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Details for Rufener Hilltop Farms

Last name: Rufener Hilltop Farms

Address: 1022 National Road 43, Mogadore

PYO Pumpkin Hours: 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, from Sept. 24 to Oct. 30.

Website: https://rufeners.com/

An aerial view of the Ohio Maze at Ramseyer Farms in Wooster.

Ramseyer Farms

Picking pumpkins at Ramseyer Farms is a simple affair. There is no entrance fee for the pumpkin patch and each pumpkin is priced at 49 cents per pound.

The key to choosing the perfect pumpkin is to keep its skin intact, disinfect it as soon as possible, and protect it from intense sunlight, according to owner Karen Ramseyer. Ramseyer followed these steps and once had a pumpkin last for a year and a half before he got rid of it.

Those wishing to partake in the more than 50 attractions available at the farm can purchase admission to its fall activity area. Prices are $13.95 Wednesday and Thursday and $19.95 Friday through Sunday for ages 3-64. Customers 65 and older are charged $10.95. Season passes cost $59.95 for adults and $34.95 for seniors.

The fall activity area also includes a 50 x 100 barn filled with shelled corn and two 8-acre corn mazes. Each labyrinth is thematic; one depicts Mario and Luigi and the other leads guests through Ohio.

“There are about 275 panels in (the Ohio-shaped corn maze),” Ramseyer said. “You can follow Native American rivers, roads and trails and then travel to the different towns and learn fun facts about Ohio.”

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Details for Ramseyer trusses

Last name: Ramseyer Farms

Address: 4000 Ramseyer Lane, Wooster

PYO Pumpkin Hours: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, ending Sunday, October 30

Website: https://ramseyerfarms.com/

Kingsway Pumpkin Farm in Lake Township is open for its annual fall festivities.  A corn maze, wagon and train rides for kids, pumpkin picking, a pirate ship, and an Old West town are among the attractions.

Kingsway Pumpkin Farm and Storage

Kingsway Pumpkin Farm has over 40 activities and attractions to choose from, including a 10-12 acre one full of pumpkins ready to be picked.

Admission to the Fall Activity Area, where the pumpkin patch is located, is $10 for ages 4-59 and $8 for ages 60 and older. Once inside, visitors can hitchhike to the pumpkin patch. Picked pumpkins are not included in admission and are charged by the pound.

Other farm activities include an 8-acre alligator-themed corn maze, a pedal car track and a petting zoo, co-owner Kevin King said.

Details for Kingsway Pumpkin Farm & Storage

Last name: Kingsway Pumpkin Farm and Storage

Address: 1555 Andrews Street NE, Hartville

PYO Pumpkin Hours: 10 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Monday to Saturday, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, Saturday October 1 to Monday October 31.

Wagon rides: The rides are only available on weekends in September, but will be available daily in October. Weekday rides take place at 12:00 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 3:00 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m., and 6:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday wagon rides take place every half hour during opening hours regular.

Website: https://kingswaypumpkinfarm.com/

Maize Valley Winery & Craft Brewery

If picking a pumpkin while drinking booze is quicker, then Maize Valley Winery is the place for you.

The winery’s pumpkin patch is in its fall harvest activity area, which also features duck races and pumpkin cannon demonstrations. To get to the pumpkin patch, you must first pay an entrance fee of $16.95 to enter the activity area. Tickets can be purchased for $10 on Thursdays.

Picked pumpkins are charged by weight and are not included in the admission fee. Most pumpkins in the fields of Maize Valley cost between $3 and $11. Fall-related foods such as hard cider, apple pie wine, and pumpkin beer are also available in the winery shop. Maize Valley does not sell wine on Sundays, according to manager Scott Mann.

Tickets for the Fall Activity Zone are associated with specific time slots and must be purchased online before arriving at the winery.

Details for Maize Valley Winery & Craft Brewery

Last name: Corn Valley Wine Estate

Address: 6193 Edison Street NE (State Road 619), Hartville

PYO Pumpkin Hours: 12 p.m. to 7 p.m. Sept. 17, 18, 24 and 25; noon to 7 p.m. Thursday to Monday from October 1 to October 30

Website: https://www.maizevalley.com/

arrowhead orchard

Pumpkins aren’t the only plant ready to be picked at Arrowhead Orchard. Apples and sunflowers are also on the table.

Admission to the Fall Activity Area, home to the U-pick plants and other attractions, is $10 for adults. Children 3-17 are $13. Season passes are available for $25.

Picked pumpkins are not included in the admission fee and are priced according to size. According to Sharon Gram, co-owner of the orchard, the price of pumpkin in the patch ranges from $1 to $25.

With over 100 acres of farmland, Arrowhead offers plenty of other family activities including a zip line, hay mountain, and apple cannon. At the property’s market, you can also buy jams, honey, apple cider and similar autumn products.

Arrowhead Orchard Details

Last name: arrowhead orchard

Address: 11724 Rue de Lisboa SE, Paris

PYO Pumpkin Hours: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, Friday and Saturday, 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, ending Monday, Oct. 31.

Website: https://www.arrowheadorchardparisoh.com/

Rittman Orchards

This orchard allows customers to pick their own pumpkins for 45 cents a pound and no entrance fee. Carts are available for people picking up multiple pumpkins from the fields.

Rittman Orchards also allows customers to pick various other fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon and corn. As an added bonus, the property has a farmers market stocked with produce grown in the orchard and Bent Ladder Cider and Wine, a cider house and winery that uses produce from the orchard to make its alcoholic beverages.

Details for Rittman Orchards

Last name: Rittman Orchards

Address: 13548 Mount Eaton Road, Doylestown

PYO Pumpkin Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays from September 24 to the end of October

Website: https://rittmanorchards.com/

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