It’s not really fall in St. Louis until you get lost in a corn maze or spot that perfect pumpkin in a field of thousands. Thankfully, no matter where you live in the region, there’s a local farm right in your backyard offering a variety of autumn-themed attractions perfect for every member of the family, from toddlers to teens.
[Note: Due to changing COVID-19 protocols, please visit each attraction’s website before planning your family outing to stay on top of their safety guidelines, mask mandates and reservation information.]
Rinkel Pumpkin Farm
One of the most recent additions to the pumpkin patch lineup is the ever-growing Rinkel Pumpkin Farm in Glen Carbon, Ill. What started as the Jack-o-Lantern go-to for families in the Metro East has evolved into a playland complete with a corn maze, straw maze, petting zoo, and duck races. A barrel train ride is also available for $2 per rider. With a menagerie of pumpkins to choose from, ranging in price from $5 to $30, you and your kids can stock up for the season.
Rinkel Pumpkin Farm is open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays through Halloween from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. Admission is free for children three and younger, $5 for those between four and 64 years of age, and $4 for seniors over age 65. Season passes are available for $15 per person. To learn more, visit Rinkel Pumpkin Farm on Facebook.
Kirkwood Farmers’ Market Pumpkin Patch & Harvest Market
When the Kirkwood Farmers’ Market closes for the summer, it opens a world of fall fun and seasonal goodies. Every day in October, the Market’s Pumpkin Patch becomes an autumn adventure for active kids. They can explore the haunted tunnel, straw mountain, John Deere Tractorland, and other hands-on attractions, transform into their favorite characters at the face painting station, and pan for gems before their visit is over. A variety of items, including fall plants, pumpkins and baked goods, will be available for purchase throughout the week, and on weekends, the Harvest Market expands its offerings with tasty treats from local producers.
The Pumpkin Patch is open every day from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. through October 31, and the Harvest Market is open every Saturday from 8 a.m. until vendors sell out. Admission is free, but additional costs may apply. Visit downtownkirkwood.com/farmers-market to learn more.
Kirkwood Farmers Market features a haunted tunnel, straw mountain, tractorland, face painting and lots more, including pumpkins! (Photo from 2019, courtesy of Downtown Kirkwood.)
October Harvest at Daniel’s Farm and Greenhouse
As parents pick up the best of fall’s bounty, including pumpkins, gourds, pansies, and mums, at Daniel’s Farm and Greenhouse in St. Peters, their kiddos can enjoy activities that celebrate the season. In addition to navigating the giant straw maze, meeting new friends at the petting zoo or exploring the corn box, your little ones can hop aboard the Pony Express Train or get into an epic battle in the Nerf Zone. An antique farm equipment exhibit, pony rides and picnic areas are also available.
October Harvest runs September 11 – October 31. Admission is $7 for guests ages two and older. Additional fees apply for the Pony Express Train, pony rides and the Nerf Zone. For days and hours, check out danielsfarmandgreenhouse.com.
Daniel's Farm and Greenhouse in St. Peter's has a petting zoo, Pony Express Train and Nerf Zone for kids to enjoy.
Tucked away in St. Charles County, Foristell’s Valley Farms surrounds festival-goers in picturesque views and non-stop fun. Your kids can pick out future Jack-o-Lanterns in Valley Farms’ one-acre pumpkin patch before enjoying the hayride, hopping in the bounce house, or taking a seat on the barrel train. Of course, the biggest highlight for kiddos is the indoor minibarn hay maze where they can climb up the hay pyramid before cruising down the five-foot wave slide.
The Fall Festival runs from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays every weekend in October. Admission is free, but additional costs may apply. Get more details at valleyfarms.us.
Halloween Farm Fun Days at Stuckmeyer’s Farm
In addition to traditional fall festival must-haves, like u-pick pumpkins and hayrides, Stuckmeyer’s in Fenton gives their event an eerie Halloween twist with Fort Spooky, a playground featuring creepy tunnels and a kid-sized corn maze. On weekends from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., little ones can also enjoy inflatables, a barrel ride and pony rides before filling up on hot dogs, kettle corn and caramel apples. Special events include the 23rd Annual Antique Tractor Show on Sunday, October 5.
Halloween Farm Fun Days take place on September 26 and every weekend in October. Admission is free, but additional costs may apply. Learn more at stuckmeyers.com.
For almost 30 years, Sullivan Farms in Florissant has outfitted St. Louis homes with their Halloween pumpkins. Starting the last weekend of September, you can search for the perfect gourd, take a spin on their free hayride, and venture through their straw maze. Kids can meet their favorite farm friends at the petting zoo and climb up for pony rides every Saturday and Sunday. Of course, no trip to Sullivan Farms is complete without stocking up on their fresh-baked pumpkin bread, apple cider and cupcakes.
Admission to the pumpkin patch is free; additional charges may apply. Opening dates, hours and directions can be found at sullivanfarmsstl.com.
Sullivan Farms in Florissant, Mo., features a petting zoo, pony rides, hayrides, a straw maze and lots of pumpkins.
Eckert’s Millstadt Fun Farm
The biggest pumpkin party on the east side of the river is Eckert’s Fun Farm located in Millstadt, Ill. Opening September 8, the ultimate fall playground for kids includes a petting farm, tire swings and miniature golf Wednesday through Sunday. On weekends, Eckert’s turns up the excitement with everything from pig races and haunted hayrides to pumpkin cannons and parakeet encounters. Live music from the main stage fills the festival area, and you can even reserve your own personal bonfire to top off your day of fun.
Tickets for the Fun Farm can be purchased online. Admission prices range from $2 to $15 depending on the day. Additional fees for certain activities apply. For full details, visit eckerts.com.
Brookdale Farms in Eureka takes everything you love about pumpkin patches and kicks it up to another level. From September 10 through November 6, the farm turns into an incredible fall theme park, complete with a petting zoo, pumpkin slingshot, cow train, inflatables, and knockerball competitions. But the main attraction is its corn maze, the biggest in St. Louis. During the daylight hours, Brookdale Farms offers laid-back fun for fans of any age, but at nightfall it morphs into the Eureka Fear Farm, offering terrifying maze tours and a haunted hayride for those brave enough to battle their greatest fears.
General admission to Brookdale Farms is $9 for guests 12 and older, $6 for children four through 11, and free for kids under three. Additional charges apply for various activities and haunted attractions. Learn more at brookdalefarmsinc.com.
The 2021 Brookdale Farms Corn Maze in Eureka pays tribute to first responders. (Image by the Josh Kahn and Katie Busk Real Estate Team).
Pumpkinland at Thies Farm & Greenhouses
Take a trip to the country without the long drive! Pumpkinland at Thies Farm offers plenty of farm fun in Maryland Heights throughout the month of October. Your general admission ticket gives you and your kids access to the pumpkin patch as well as the giant play area that includes a corn maze, straw castle, pirate ship, and swings.
Pumpkinland is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day in October except for Mondays. Admission is $8 for children ages two to 14 and $6 for anyone over age 15. To learn more, visit thiesfarm.com.
Pumpkinland at Thies Farm in Maryland Heights has a giant play area, corn maze, straw castle, pirate ship, among other activities for kids.
Relleke Pumpkin Patch
At Relleke Farms in Pontoon Beach, Ill., the fall festival grounds are overflowing with family-friendly action. Carnival favorites, including the Spin the Pumpkin ride, Crying Chicken Roller Coaster and giant slide, offer jaw-dropping thrills while more traditional pumpkin patch activities like wagon rides, pumpkin painting, and corn mazes let you and your kids bond in the great outdoors. On October 30 and 31, they’ll also be serving up ghostly treats and frightful eats for Halloween, including pumpkin butter funnel cakes and spooky shake-ups.
Admission to Relleke Pumpkin Patch is free, but additional costs may apply for certain activities. The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends from September 25 – October 31. Learn more at rellekepumpkinpatch.com.
Metro East mom Nicole Plegge is the lifestyle and pop culture blogger for STL Parent. Besides working as a freelance writer & public relations specialist, and raising two daughters and a husband, Nicole's greatest achievements are finding her misplaced car keys each day and managing to leave the house in a stain-free shirt. Her biggest regret is never being accepted to the Eastland School for Girls. Follow Nicole on Twitter @STLWriterinIL
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