Trees are bursting with colour, the air is crisp, and fireplaces are crackling… it must be Autumn.
Dan and I both consider this our favourite season and we find ourselves trying to get outside more this time of year. To embrace the season, this past Friday night we enjoyed what Howell Family Pumpkin Farm had to offer. We liked the idea of going at night as it lends a sense of mystery to everything.
As you walk into Howells it becomes clear that this isn’t just a pumpkin farm; Jerry Howell has created a full-fledged Family Fun attraction with a wonderful edge of humour.
The entrance is dotted with protestors of a gentle kind. Scarecrows have organized to form SETA (Scarecrows for the Ethical Treatment of Apples). Their signs demand that people stop and think about what horrors they subject apples to every time they are crushed, sliced and baked. They suggest you can support SETA by purchasing pumpkins instead. Ha ha, I love it!
As a pumpkin farm, naturally you can expect Howells to have pumpkins available for purchase. However, this is taken much further as there is an outstanding amount of varieties offered. Some pumpkins were HUGE and required wagons to carry!
Howell Family Pumpkin Farm is split into two different regions. The first is the Produce and Market Area where you can purchase your pumpkins and feast on some of their delectable goodies. The second is their Howl’n Theme Area where the bulk of their entertainment lies. There is admission to the themed section but pricing is quite reasonable and season passes are offered to enhance savings for families who want to visit often.
As a sucker for animatronics, I was instantly pulled into the many shows dotting the grounds. Most are located within the Howl’n Theme Area but you can find the Bull Frog Trio and Skeleton Truck Show in the market section. These two shows had me chuckling as the jokes are pretty bad but in a fun, goofy sort of way. Plus, did I mention they are animatronics? SQUEEEE!!
More animatronics, yes I’m still going on about that, can be found inside the Howl’n Theme Area. You can watch The Chicken Show as they sing and tell jokes, let corn talk your ears off, and rock out with the Skeleton Band.
Howells also offers several animal encounters for the family. There is an Animal Farm on site, bunnies situated into a tiny village, and a raised Goat Walk section. You can also watch little piggies race around a track during the Pig Races.
After Dan and I walked around a bit, we heard a large noise and turned to see a huge pumpkin dinosaur towering over the crowd. His name is Rex and he’s a long-time resident of the farm. This gentle giant was demonstrating his pumpkin-basketball skills to a mesmerized crowd.
The Haunted Spook Barn was a real treat. Tons of effort was put into ambiance, disorientation, sights, sounds and fright. I didn’t expect it to be too much of anything (more like a travelling carnival) but I was mistaken. This barn contained a serious attempt at fright! They are quite aware of this as there are several ‘Chicken Out’ doors strategically located throughout the experience.
There were more activities and shows than we had time for; it calls for a second trip in my opinion. Next time I’d love to take a trip on The Scenic Wagon Ride, get lost in the Super Corny Cobbs Maze, test my Pumpkin slingshot skills, and take a casual scenic stroll through their Carolinian forest trails.
You can easily spend hours at Howells Family Pumpkin Farm. It’s a great spot for all-ages as they’ve carefully scaled different attractions to appeal to even toddlers (not always easy to find). With food and entertainment on-site, it’s hard to leave!
2878, Holland Rd.
Fonthill, Ontario, L0S 1E6
Activities: Animal Farm, Bunnyville, Goat Walk, Scarecrow Display, Forest Walk, Straw Jump Barn, 3 and under Jump Barn, Hay Play Area in the Valley, Tractor Tire Play Area, Sandbox
Attractions: Scenic Wagon Ride, Haunted Spook Barn, Super Corny Cobb’s Maze Adventure, Haystack Jumping Pillow, Bucking Cow Train, Train-O-Saurus Rex Ride, Tricycle Track
Games: Rubber Ducky Races, Pumpkin Slingshot
Animatronic Shows: The Skeleton Ghost Truck, Singing Chicken Show,Skeleton Band, Singing Frog Show,Chickens to Market Show, Sir Howells Alot
Live Shows: Pig Races, Rex the Pumpkin Eating Dinosaur
Please visit the Howell Family Pumpkin Farm website for more information.