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Picking The Perfect Pumpkin Patch


Now that the temperatures have cooled off, school is in full swing and the colors in the trees are beginning to change, Chicago-area pumpkin patches are ready to help you create fabulous fall memories. There are quite a few pumpkin patches North, South, East and West of the city, each with something a little different to offer. So whether you're in the mood for taking horse-drawn hayride, running through a twisty-turny corn maze, or maybe just holding some baby chicks, you're sure to find a pumpkin patch that is the perfect match for you and your family.

When trying to decide which pumpkin patch is best for you and your family, here are a few things to keep in mind:

*How far is the pumpkin patch from your home?
*What age-appropriate activities are available?
*Is it pay-one-price admission or are there additional fees for activities?

10.7 -  Family  & Pets – Picking The Perfect Pumpkin Patch – kfmpumpkin
(credit: Kristin McCann)

Johansen Farms and Children's Zoo

710 West Boughton Rd.

Bolingbrook, Illinois 60440
Hours: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Take a hayride through the pumpkin patch! Johannsen's also offers a large children's zoo with more than 500 animals, including chicks, goats and ponies. On the way out, be sure to stop in the gift shop where you can shop through a beautiful selection of mums, pumpkins, and corn stalks and also enjoy cider, taffy apples, fudge and other fall favorites.

CBS Chicago Insider Tip: Go to their website homepage and scroll down for coupons!

Siegel's Cottonwood Farms

17250 S. Weber Rd.
Crest Hill, Illinois 60441
10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Admission: Weekdays $12, Weekends $14 ($2.00 off with coupon)
815-741-2693, 800-304-FARM

Siegel's is a fifth generation working farm. You can purchase tickets and find coupons online. Kids of all ages will love picking out their own pumpkins, getting lost in the giant corn maze and hopping onboard the hayrack rides. Siegel's also offers inflatables, a petting zoo and baby chick farm, a kiddie train and Ghost Town railroad. In 2011, the farm is open September 24 – October 31, including Columbus Day.

Dollinger Family Farm

7502 W Hansel Rd

Channahon, Illinois 60410

10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Admission: Free

The Dollinger Family Farm has been operational since 1852. In addition to the traditional pumpkin farm offerings—train rides, petting zoo, and horse-drawn hayrides—the farm sponsors a Civil War enactment weekend October 15 and 16, and several main stage entertainers, such as magicians and puppeteers. Parking, admission and petting zoo are free, hayrides are $5.00, corn maze and train rides are $3.00 each. In 2011, it's open from September 24th until October 11th.

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Bengtson's Pumpkin Farm

13341 W. 151st St.

Homer Glen, Illinois 60491

10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Admission: $12.99 (adults) or $11.99 (children)

Bengtson's is open for the month of October from the 1st through the 31st. So there's plenty of time to bring your kids of all ages. Younger ones will love the Fun Barn, while older members of your brood will enjoy the animated Haunted Barn. Of course there's a petting zoo, pony rides and the Giant Crazy Corn Maizey. Little kids will also love Bengtsonville Children's Playland with a fire station, a jailhouse and a school house. Don't forget the pig races! Oink. Oink.

CBS Chicago Insider Tip: Admission includes some free kids rides on many days. A coupon is available on the web site.

Kinsch's Autumn Fun Fest

301 West Johnson Street
Palatine, Illinois 60087


Fridays, Saturday and Sundays
September 19 – October 30
10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Admission: $7 (6 months – 12yrs) $3 (13 and over)

Kinsch's features the world's largest tractor, a children's haunted house, a two-story monster slide, a feeding zoo and children's entertainment areas. On October 14, Kinsch's sponsors a "Trunk or Treat" featuring local businesses and classic car clubs.

Didier Farms

16678 W. Aptakisic Rd.
Prairie View-Lincolnshire, Illinois  60069
Hours: Monday through Friday: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

An educational barn is one of the highlights of the Didier Farms Pumpkin Fest. In addition to all of your favorites, such as five-acre corn maze, a haystack maze for younger kids, petting zoo, carnival rides, and inflatables, you'll find a pig bin, a bird exhibit and white tiger exhibit. Some exhibits and rides incur additional costs, but there are certain days where you can purchase unlimited passes or all-inclusive wristbands. See the Web site for all the varying costs and dates.


Goebbert's Farm & Garden Center

40 W. Higgins Rd.
South Barrington, Illinois 60010
(847) 428-6727
Hours: 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Admission: Free

From September 24 through October 31, your family can go crazy - jumping on the giant pillow, visit the kid-friendly haunted house, visit Animal Land, watch the pumpkin eating dinosaur, or even ride a camel. There are two mazes to keep everyone busy.

CBS Chicago Insider Tip: While admission and parking are free most rides and activities cost $5.00 each.

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Kristin McCann is working mom with two young girls. She strives to have fun, quality time with her family and a fulfilling professional career – even though many believe the two to be mutually exclusive.
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