A crisp $10 bill is all you need to get inside a haunted house, lost in a corn maze or on a spooky ghost tour this fall. Abbey Zelko, FlipSidePA
With Halloween right around the corner and Thanksgiving soon to follow, farms in Frederick County can always expect the harvest season to bring in a swell in visiting families in search of fall follies. That’s why so many participate in the annual Family Festival @ the Farm, held every season during the third weekend of October.
For this year’s event, 19 working farms and pumpkin patches across the region will present onsite-exclusive activities and offerings, such as scarecrow making, produce picking, sampling fall favorites, taking hayrides and plenty more. Visitors will enjoy free admission to participating farms on both days, though some activities may require a nominal fee.
Established by Homegrown Frederick back in 2001, this self-paced countywide farm experience allows families to enjoy fun fall adventure while also learning about the significance of Frederick County’s deeply rooted agricultural history and heritage. This year’s event will take place on Oct. 15 and 16.
Experience an onsite pumpkin patch, interactive corn maze, petting zoo and a special corn table activity where children can feel corn on the cob and play with their own tractors.
Location: 8302 Ramsburg Road, Thurmont, MD 21788
Find out more:brookfieldpumpkins.com
Catoctin Mountain Orchard
Here, visitors can enjoy pick-your-own opportunities among apples, pumpkins, flowers and other orchard offerings.
Location: 15036 North Franklinville Road, Thurmont, MD 21788
Find out more: catoctinmountainorchard.com
Discover a bountiful pumpkin patch and various kids’ activities, including rubber duck races, cow trains and 45 onsite attractions in all. There will also be a special “Birthday Bash” Corn Maze event with all the farm’s party animals in attendance.
Location: 5501 Detrick Road, Mount Airy, MD 21771
Find out more:gaverfarm.com
Glade Link Farms
Featured activities will include an interactive pumpkin patch, ongoing hayrides, face painting, scarecrow making, pumpkin decorating and more.
Location: 12270 Woodsboro Pike, Keymar, MD 21757
Find out more:gladelink.com
Jumbo’s Pumpkin Patch
Enjoy a plentiful pumpkin patch, 15-acre featured corn maze, complimentary hayrides, pony rides, an onsite petting zoo, face painting and mini wagon rides, along with loads more to see and do.
Location: 6521 Holter Road, Middletown, Maryland 21769
Find out more:jumbos.org
Here you will find a lush pick-your-own pumpkin patch, two pumpkin cannons, five featured corn mazes, a hay maze and fort, barrel train rides, bouncy ball racing, zip lines, patch pedal cart tracks and rubber duck races, among several other activities and onsite features.
Location: 13001 Creagerstown Road, Thurmont, MD 21788
Find out more: winterbrookfarmsmd.com
Mayne’s Tree Farm
Enjoy pre-picked gourds and pumpkins or venture out to the pumpkin patch via ongoing hayrides. Other activities include an interactive corn maze, the popular pumpkin slingshot, scarecrow making, a moon bounce, face painting and other awesome autumnal attractions.
Location: 3420 Buckeystown Pike, Buckeystown, Md., 21717
Find out more: maynestreefarm.com
Nick’s Organic Farm
Visiting families can learn firsthand about the organic beef, chickens, turkeys, free-range eggs and other products at this working farm. Special onsite happenings throughout the weekend will be offered for the whole family to enjoy.
Location: 2733 Buckeystown Pike, Adamstown, MD 21710
Find out more: nicksorganicfarm.com
Oakie Doke Farm
Families can get an education on the sustainably grown vast vegetable varieties here along with the process of canning and preserving fresh produce.
Location: 10330 Oak Hill Road, Keymar, MD 21757
Find out more: www.oakiedokefarms.com
Persistence Run Farm
Visitors will learn all about the belted Galloway beef cattle here as well as the non-GMO Berkshire pastured pork the farm is known for.
Location: 10171 Masser Road, Frederick, MD 21702
Find out more: persistencerunfarm.com
Rights of Man Farm
Families will get an education on all the farm animals here, including beef cattle, goats, pigs and chickens. They will also learn firsthand about the organically grown vegetables here.
Location: 9120 Ball Road, Ijamsville, MD 21754
Find out more:rightsofmanfarm.com
Rocky Point Creamery
Come out and learn about the process of making ice cream while enjoying some yourself, along with other farm fresh offerings. Families can also visit the renowned sunflower patch and enjoy other onsite offerings.
Location: 4323A Tuscarora Road, Tuscarora, MD 21790
Find out more:rockypointcreamery.com
Scenic View Orchards
Families are invited to take hayrides along the orchards and surrounding land, learning all about the varieties of apples grown here and what it takes to cultivate and harvest them.
Location: 16225 Sabillasville Road, Sabillasville, MD 21780
Find out more:scenicvieworchards.com
South Mountain Creamery
Visitors can take on the interactive task of feeding baby calves and watching the milking progress, live onsite.
Location: 8305 Bolivar Road, Middletown, MD 21769
Find out more: southmountaincreamery.com
Sycamore Spring Farm
Enjoy pick-your-own offerings from the farm’s seasonal showcase of fruits, vegetables, flowers and herbs. Tour the farm and visit cows, lambs, goats and poultry.
Location: 6003 Elmer Derr Road, Frederick MD 21703
Find out more: sycamorespringfarm.org
Adults and kids alike are invited to visit the nursery to learn about the different annuals, perennials, herbs, fruits, vegetables, trees and shrubs that are grown here.
Location: 195 Harwood Road, Harwood, MD, 20776
Find out more:thanksgivingfarm.com
Three Streams Farm
Children will love farm visits with animals like the Katahdin sheep, Rhode Island Red chickens, goats and more. You can also take a tour of the property’s plentiful garden plots and check out onsite barn sale items.
Location: Burkittsville Road, Maryland
Fnd out more: facebook.com/Three-Streams-Farm
Twin Hills Farm
Come and see the animals that make their home here, stroll through the gardens and learn all about what it takes to grow your own vegetables.
Location: 3630 Park Mills Rd, Frederick, MD 21704
Find out more: twinhillsfarmurbana.com
Whispering Meadows Alpaca Breeders
Learn all about alpacas and make some new friends as you visit with the 30 who call this place home. You will also find numerous alpaca products available to purchase onsite as well.
Location: 13959 Unionville Road, Mt. Airy, MD 21771
Find out more:openherd.com/farms/3743/whispering-meadows-alpaca-breeders
If you go:
What: Family Festival @ the Farm
When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 15; noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 16
Cost: Admission is free
More information: homegrownfrederick.com/family-festival