Looking for a local pumpkin patch? These U-pick experiences throughout the Hudson River region have gourds galore — and more!
By Claudia Larsen, with additional reporting by Kait Waterman
With fall festivities in full swing, what better way to keep the fun going than by visiting one of the many Hudson Valley farms for a U-pick pumpkin trip? In addition to pumpkin picking, many of the farms offer hayrides, corn mazes, and other seasonal fruits and vegetables for plucking perfection.
On the way out, don’t forget to stop by the orchard shops to get warm apple cider donuts and fresh-pressed cider by the pint.
A farm founded on a family’s values, Stanton’s Feura Farm & Markets has pumpkin picking and tons of activities, all of which are made for kids and families alike. Take a hayride to and from the pumpkin patch, explore a corn maze and a hay maze, and play on the straw slide before picking up fall mums to decorate your table. Admission is $5 per person, though kids under 15 and seniors get in for free on Halloween weekend.
The 100-plus-year-old farm landmark of Albany County is not just for pumpkin picking. Visitors can also stop by the farm market, gift shop, café, cidery, and brewery. Kids, meanwhile, can take part in the number of educational programs available onsite.
Fix Bros. Fruit Farm is the go-to spot for cheap pumpkin picking. Pumpkins here are only 35 cents per pound, with other fruits and veggies up for picking as well. Gourds and more are also up for sale in the farm stand if you aren’t the U-pick type.
If you’re looking for more fall décor than just pumpkins, head straight to Yonder. The Valatie farm also has gourds, winter squash, and other decorative fall veggies for you to go out and pick yourself.
Originally a dairy-centric farm in the 20th century, Samascott Orchards is now a destination for all kinds of U-pick fruits and veggies as well as family entertainment. U-pick pumpkins are 40 cents per pound, and families can enjoy a day filled with Nine Pin Cider, visits to the farm store for produce, and homemade ice cream.
Fishkill Farms is 270 acres of U-pick delight. Pumpkins can be picked from the patch that happens to be the first stop on the wagon tour. The farm also hosts Fall Harvest Festivals every weekend in September through October, during which visitors can take wagon rides, listen to live music, and indulge in fresh-pressed cider and donuts. Reservations are required for all picking so be sure to check out the website for availability.
Barton Orchards is the place to go for pumpkin picking and a day of family fun. Take a hayride to the pumpkin patch and pick away, then stop by the concession stand, “The Apple Core,” for the to-die-for apple cider donut sundae before listening to local live music. Attractions there include gem stone mining, a fun park, and more.
Built as a large-scale pumpkin patch, Dykeman Farm is pumpkin-picking perfection. Choose your own pumpkin among the beautiful golden gourds on the grounds. Don’t forget to hit concessions and stop by the farm stand to browse the winter squashes and fall decorations for sale. The Pawling destination features more than 70 pumpkin varieties.
Pierson’s Farm hosts a yearly festival throughout the month of October that’s a great opportunity to get the family outside and enjoy the crisp autumn air. Hop on a hayride to the pumpkin patch, snack on some baked goods, and wash them down with hot cider and hot chocolate.
When you’re all set with your picks, be sure to visit this year’s corn maze, which celebrates the 150th anniversary of the Otisville Mastodon discovery. Browse the gift shop for local honeys, ciders, and syrups or peruse the Halloween and Christmas décor.
This Montgomery farm hosts fall festivals every year—a family tradition dating back to the 1980s. On the grounds, visitors can explore 15 acres of pumpkin patches. During weekends and holidays, guests can enjoy tractor-drawn hayrides, straw mazes, and refreshments at the farm stand. Kids will love the adorable farm animals.
Lawrence Farms Orchards is managed by a family that has run U-pick orchards for over 30 years, so you can be sure that a visit will be well worth it. This farm is a great option if you want a shorter trip and a fun-filled day. Don’t leave without stopping by the concession stand for cider donuts, pies, milkshakes, frozen cider, and more. Admission is $7 per person Monday to Thursday, and $10 on the weekends; children two and younger are admitted for free.
With a massive patch and a hayride to help you get there, Wright Family Farm is the place to go if you need plenty of options to find that perfect pumpkin. There are two types of admission into Wright’s: barnyard ($10) and maze ($18).
Barnyard admission gives you access to activities, such as the farm animals, rubber duck races, pedal carts, pumpkin bowling, and more. Maze admission gives you the same features plus unlimited time to explore the corn maze. Additionally, the farm offers fun pumpkin varieties like the warted goblin, munchkin, and more.
Kristy’s Barn is a green farm dedicated to the community and its love of farming. U-pick is the biggest feature, since the pumpkins are self-described “perfection.” A petting paddock, apple picking, fresh cider, and a straw maze are also available for visitor’s entertainment.
Liberty Ridge Farm is in the middle of everything in the Capital Region; it’s just 15 minutes from Clifton Park, 20 minutes from Saratoga Springs, and 30 minutes from Albany. Have the whole family pick a pumpkin, then visit the many other attractions, such as the 11-acre corn maze, farm animals, trolley rides, paintball, pumpkin cannons, and maize museum.
Don’t forget to visit Brad’s Barnyard, too; it’s a whopping seven acres of fun attractions like giant gerbil wheels, jumping pillows, and pedal karts. Catch the new Riverbend Railroad mini-train, which offers scenic countryside views.
Dubois Farm began as a 54-acre farm to save the small farming industry. Now at 69 acres, the farm brings “a piece of Olde New England to the Hudson Valley” through its architectural style of buildings and animal pens. There is also a farm market and café, along with a tavern stocked with local wines, hard ciders, and craft beers.
Hurd’s Family Farm is the perfect picture of “agritainment.” Families that visit can pick pumpkins of varying size and price ($6-20). Then, they can partake in the other activities on the farm, such as a bounce station, obstacle course, giant slide, and corn maze. When hunger strikes, stop by the Big Apple Café for a farm-to-table meal.
Jenkins-Lueken Orchard is best for people looking for the essentials. Choose your pumpkin from a range of shapes and sizes and visit the farm stand to check out the farm’s produce, bakery, cider, and special brand of artisanal hard cider.
If you’re in search of a leisurely pumpkin picking experience that still has activities, head to Wilkens Fruit & Fir Farm. Pick your pumpkin and traverse the corn maze before stopping by the bakery, which also stocks lunch foods, followed by the apple farm market and the country gift market. Those 21 and up should go to the farm’s White Hill Vineyard for tastings of the Wilkens’ house-made wine.
Outhouse Orchards is a family-owned operation that stretches back to the early 1800s, when the farm primarily produced dairy. Starting in the early 20th century, the Outhouse family began to grow fruit commercially. Nowadays, families can pick apples, pears, and pumpkins at $25 per car. Visitors can take a hayride around the farm, then buy a ticket to solve the puzzle hidden in clues throughout the corn maze.
Related: 6 Delicious Ways to Use Leftover Hudson Valley Apples