Arnrprior Pumpkin Farm is a family run farm in Stirling. Even if you’re reading this blog entry in January put this in your diary for October because it’s so worth the wait. I had booked tickets a month earlier and the weekend had since sold out. Entry is free, when booking tickets it’s a £5 charge per car but this is reimbursed against the price of your pumpkin. You are also allocated a time slot. On our visit we attended the 11.30am – 2.30pm time slot.
Stirling is a good hours drive from Dundee and I was a little apprehensive about travelling that far for pumpkins with closer options nearby but our day out couldn’t have been any more fun. Wellies are absolutely essential and a change of clothes and shoes for afterwards definitely advised!
On arrival there were plenty of staff to offer assistance and direct you on what there is to see and do. You can also hire wellies if needed for just £1.
We headed straight for the Spooky Kale Maze.
This is probably the messiest activity of the day due to the ankle deep mud but the children laughed and slid the whole way through with only one face forward fall. We decided to grab some lunch before we got any muddier and headed over to the food carts. Summer and Daddy enjoyed some wood fired pizza and I opted for gluten free lentil soup washed down with a Pumpkin Gin Fizz. There were a number of other foods and snacks available as well as balloons and face painting. We spotted a professional photographer but Kaiden had already fallen over in the mud and was sporting a gorgeous mud face mask so we decided to give that a miss. All around the farm there are an abundance of interactive signage and photo props which we had great fun with. I hadn’t realised there was also the opportunity to pick potatoes and turnips so we grabbed a wheelbarrow and headed down to the pumpkin patch. Summer of course, looking for the biggest one she could find despite daddy’s encouragement to pick up a green pumpkin. There are 6 different varieties of pumpkin available in the patch. Next to the pumpkins were the turnips.
These are surprisingly easy to pull out of the ground and Summer managed on her own. I had visions the story book The Enormous Turnip and expected a four person family chain to be required but alas it wasn’t to be. Proud as punch with her treasures we headed over to pick some potatoes. Spades and bags are kindly supplied and we took to it full of promise until Summer found a worm. With a scream she took to her heels and ran to the end of the potatoes leaving the grown ups behind to fill two bags of potatoes. Chain saw demonstrations are on throughout the day and we watched them skilfully carving pumpkins. These were available to buy and personalised items were also available. We were filthy and wet by now and decided a coffee and some candy floss would be a good call. Once we had warmed through Summer had a turn on the Quad Pods, for only £1 a turn. I’m glad we left this right until the end because she came off also sporting a mud face mask. Portaloos are provided on site and it was time to use the toilets before bundling into the car for the drive home, minus our wellies, coats, muddy gloves and in one case trousers!
On leaving the farm there is an opportunity to buy lots of Pumpkin themed items and locally made produce such as candles and chutneys.
Overall a wonderfully muddy day had by us all. If you are planning a visit don’t forget that booking is essential.
Additionally I’d recommend the following;
- Pound coins for additional activities
- Wellies and a change of footwear for travelling home
- Warm coat and gloves (at least 1 pair of gloves) If you have snow or rain suits for your littles these would definitely be best
- A packet of baby wipes
- Towels, just incase someone takes a tumble
- A bag or box to throw your wellies into afterwards
- Your imagination and a childlike sense of fun