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Arata's Pumpkin Farm
185 Verde Rd., Half Moon Bay
Arata's Pumpkin Farm has been a Halloween staple in the Half Moon Bay area since the 1930's when teenager's John Arata and his brother Clarence began planting pumpkin seeds to feed the family's hogs. One day they were hauling some of their pumpkins along Highway One back to the farm when a passing motorist stopped and asked if he could buy a few. The Arata's sold the pumpkins for a quarter and the pumpkin industry in Half Moon Bay was born.
Nestled in the coastal hills on Verde Road six miles south of Half Moon Bay behind immense castle walls constructed of hay, Arata's Pumpkin Farm grows several dozen varieties of pumpkins, squash, gourds, and Indian corn for your fall dining and decorating. After grabbing a wagon, you can select your pumpkin from large hay bins at the front of the farm or venture out into the field where a large orange "river" of pumpkins flows amidst the corn and pumpkin vines.
There is so much more to do and see at Arata's aside from finding your perfect pumpkin. In several areas of the farm you can see ducks and their ducklings, take a pony ride, pet farm animals in their petting zoo, take a hay ride, find a perfect spot for a picnic, and perhaps best of all get lost in one of their two hay mazes, a small one for the very young and and a huge one for older children and adults.
Now their adult hay maze warrants an extra paragraph. We've been through many, many mazes in our visits to the pumpkin patches of the Bay Area. For the most part we've been able to move through them quite expeditiously. However, we've gone through the Arata's hay maze the last two years and each time we've gotten horribly lost. In fact last year we brought a group of friends with us and all split up to find our own way through. It's a testament to the wonderfully diabolical nature of the Aratas that the Hauntmistress never did find her way out and eventually had to be shown the correct way out. This year we were told that the maze is even more difficult with more twists, turns, and dead ends!
Be sure to take a look at our Events Calendar to find all the other great events going on in the Bay Area. Or if you're reading this review in a year other than it was written, please check our Events Calendar for current dates and hours of operation.
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