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Local Pumpkin Patches

by Ava Mulno

It’s fall!

It’s the time of the year for pumpkins, tractor and pony rides, corn mazes, and fall-themed activities. But where would one go to find all these must-haves in one place?

Bates Nut Farm, notoriously known for patches of pumpkins, is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., beginning September 17th through Halloween.

Bates Nut Farm has been around for 90 years, while the pumpkin patches have been open for 60 years. Its history originates back in 1921, when Gilbert and Beatrice Bates moved to raise their family of five boys to Valley Center, purchasing the “Walnut Slope Ranch.”

Over 100 years later, this farm would become an attraction, renamed the Bates Farm. Keeping true to the original name, it is still known for its variety of nuts and spices. It began as a walnut farm, but evolved to sell a higher variety of nuts from all over the world.

Admission to the farm is free, however, you must pay to park. Many families and groups of friends spend a full day filled with fall spirit, choosing the best pick of the pumpkin patches.

But if the full day of fun isn’t what you are looking for to kickstart fall, you can grab a pumpkin, or maybe two, at your local grocery store. Trader Joe’s, located in Liberty Station on Truxtun Road, is a great option. Not only do they sell a variety of small, medium, and large pumpkins, but they also sell gourds. Along with the real pumpkins, TJ’s is known for its seasonal items; and it is about this time when they go crazy with fall flavors. Ranging from pumpkin-spiced bagels and apple cider donuts to vanilla pumpkin-scented candles, Trader Joe’s is the place to go to fulfill all your festive fall needs.


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