Pumpkin Planting and Picking

Back in the beginning of June we made, what has become our annual trip to Ross Farm Museum to take part in the Pumpkin planting weekend. It’s a great event where you can go and plant your own pumpkin seed in their fields. They put a large number of stakes in the ground in rows and each person gets a number. This year we were in the high 500’s, so it’s a popular event.

We always enjoy visiting this museum anyway and get an annual family pass so we can visit when ever we want. I’ve written before about the Maple Syrup Weekend they do.

This past weekend was when you could come back to “pick” your pumpkins. It is more like pick up your pumpkins because they do a lot of the clean up and make sure that everyone has a pumpkin, because inevitably I’m sure not everyone’s seeds actually grows, and even if they did each plant produces more than one pumpkin. So they detach all the pumpkins and remove all the plants from the field and make sure each post has a pumpkin waiting for you to come get it.

This year they made it even better than before because the provided wagons and wheel barrows that you can use to carry the pumpkins from back in the field out to your vehicle. I still ended up with the task of making three trips to the car carrying the four pumpkins because of the large group of friends that came the wagon we took only held a few of the pumpkins.

Luckily I only carried one the whole way from the field because most of the people took a horse wagon ride to the field and then back closer to the entrance. Then I just had to carry the other three from there out to the parking lot.

Besides picking up the pumpkins the kids also enjoyed stopping by the cottage where they had baked some molasses cookies to sample. The other highlight was something they don’t get to do every visit, but they were able to milk a cow this  time.

Planting the Pumpkins back in June:

Our trip back to get the pumpkins:

Beginning of Autumn

Autumn is my favourite time of the year.

September starts out as what I call Birthday Month in my house. Three of my children have birthdays this month and so does my Father-in-law. So we get to start off the best season by celebrating for the whole last of the month.

My wife enjoys birthdays more than the average person so she goes all out. Most people we celebrate with have at least two parties. One on their actual birthday which is more for family and a dinner, but then the bigger party celebrating with all their friends in some fashion. This causes the month to be busy between the planning and running around associated with this, but we always have a good time.

We live in a beautiful agricultural area so Autumn is also harvest season. So many agricultural tourism based attractions have popped up over the years. From corn mazes to apple picking, there’s always something going on to get out in the fresh crisp fall air. The temperatures are about perfect for my liking and the scenery with the leaves changing colors makes an excellent backdrop for our adventures.

We have a couple really cool events. The Annual Giant Pumpkin Regatta is, just as the name sounds, an event built around giant pumpkins. Competitors will actually carve them out into huge boats and paddle them across the water in a race. Before that they have a big parade so you can see all the fancy designs and costumes they’ve prepared to stand out in the race.

My town also holds an annual Pumpkin People Festival. All over town displays of pumpkin people show up to celebrate the harvest season. It draws lots of visitors to the area and is a favourite activity of my kids to go around and see all the people.

Each year in October there is the Valley Harvest Marathon, this year I’ve registered to run my first race ever. I’ve done a few 10k runs in preparation so hopefully it will go well and hopefully it will become a new Autumn tradition for me.

There are a few down sides to Autumn though. For one the days get a lot shorter. Early morning runs have been pushed back which makes it harder to fit in to our busy morning schedules. It is also a clear reminder that as beautiful as this time of year is, it won’t be long before winter is here.