By Grace Smith
|The Crow Creek Pumpkin Patch sign welcomes visitors to enjoy the various activities offered on the farm.
||Visitors have an opportunity to pick their own pumpkin to take home after the hayride.
Autumn is in the air and that means football, deer hunting, county fairs, harvest season and, for residents in Stevenson, the annual Crow Creek Pumpkin Patch. For five years now Linette Phillips, along with her father and cousin’s wife, has spent countless hours working the land, constructing buildings and decorating the site all to prepare for one exciting month of the year – October.
|Kids of all ages enjoy finding their way through the four-acre corn maze.
The pumpkin patch is located almost 12 miles outside of the little town providing its guests with a setting that is rustic and tranquil. The site is set on a 30-acre plot giving visitors a generous dose of rural life. While this acreage is labeled as the “Crow Creek Pumpkin Patch,” the site boasts much more than a pumpkin patch.
Phillips said the corn pit is a feature that always attracts great amusement. The corn pit is an eight by sixteen feet box that is filled with corn kernels. Phillips said it takes almost 200 bushels of corn to fill the box. She added that there is even a slide into the pit and that sometimes money or other prizes will be buried in the corn so children can pretend they are searching for hidden treasure. Although children are the most frequent enthusiasts of the pit, Phillips said some adults will play in the corn just like the kids.
There is also a petting zoo on the site so visitors can have a hands-on encounter with animals they may have never seen up close before. It accommodates several kinds of animals including rabbits, goats, geese, pigs and a miniature horse. Phillips said they purchase feed and other animal care items at the Jackson County Farmers Cooperative in Stevenson for their animals.
For the adventurous guests the Crow Creek Pumpkin Patch also features a four-acre corn maze. Children and adults can meander through the foliage walls on paths cut into the corn plot.
Hayrides are also a key feature of this month-long event. Guests are invited to take the 30-minute ride that concludes with a chance to pick a pumpkin from the patch to carry home. Phillips said the Pumpkin Patch also offers a haunted hayride during the last week of October.
After a long day of playing in the corn pit, petting the animals, touring the corn maze, and taking the hayride, visitors will probably work up an appetite. Phillips said the Snack Shack is a popular stop for those hungry guests. Some items sold there are soft drinks, hot chocolate, hamburgers, hotdogs, nachos, corndogs, chips and candied apples.
There is also a gift shop on location for souvenirs and Crow Creek Pumpkin Patch paraphernalia. Visitors will find a number of items for sale including t-shirts, coloring books, hand-painted gourds, candles, John Deere gifts and chocolate fudge.
This year the Pumpkin Patch opened on September 30 and will run until Halloween night. Admission is $7.00 and that includes the hayride and pumpkin, the corn pit, the corn maze and the petting zoo. Crow Creek Pumpkin Patch is located at 52 County Road 56, Stevenson, AL, 35772. For more information call 256-437-1044 or visit their website: pumpkinpatchesandmore.org
Grace Smith is an AFC management services trainee.