Having trouble getting in the fall spirit because of the 80 degree weather in sunny Southern California? There is a place in Irvine where the leaves fall, the pumpkins grow, and nice warm food is served. A kid-friendly attraction located in the beautiful hills of Irvine is the Tanaka Farms Pumpkin Patch: a place where you can get your much needed fall fix.
Open seven days a week, the pumpkin patch is chalk-full of fun attractions for the entire family to enjoy. The busiest days are Friday through Sunday, but this is because loads more of activities are available.
A quick tip for you to note before visiting: You must purchase a parking pass online before you arrive at the farm. This virtual pass can be purchased on the website, and shown on your phone screen to the workers at the gate. Once you find yourself inside, you will find Instagram-worthy photo ops around every corner that go along with the playful Hello Kitty theme.
Walking into the patch can be a bit overwhelming because of the abundance of things to do, but I would recommend tackling the left side first. After entering, veer to your left and walk past the Tanaka Grill to find the first attraction that is open every day of the week: The Wagon Ride. This 15-minute ride will give you a relaxing tour of the patch and allows you to take note of where you may want to search for pumpkins later on in the day. The highlight of the ride during the weekend is the “Pumpkin Cannon”, where a worker launches pumpkin into the air where it lands in a nearby field.
The second attraction is the petting zoo. There you will find purchasable food to feed animals that include pigs, goats, rabbits, and more. To ensure that you stay healthy and germ-free, a hand sanitizing station is located near the exit of the barn.
Also on the left side of the farm is the free corn maze. This maze has an “Easy” difficulty level, which makes it a breeze for kids to navigate. Next to the corn maze is a variety of carnival games, arts and crafts, mini ATVs, and a tractor ride.
Once you have completed those attractions, hop in line at the Tanaka Grill. The most popular items on the menu are the Tanaka Bowl, which includes carne asada, rice, and cilantro lime sauce, and the “Totchos”, which are tater tots topped with salsa, cheese, and sour cream. The grill only open at certain times of the day, so be sure to check the website before your visit.
To complete your trip, stop by the pumpkin fields to select your favorite pumpkin. Don’t find one that you like? You can find more in the pumpkin shop near the exit. Also in the shop are plenty of fall foods, home decor, and pumpkin decorating kits to get you ready for the autumn holidays.
For more information, visit http://www.tanakafarms.com/tours-pumpkin-patch.