You got it! Even Papa needs to play at his polar patch. When the Bismarck Tribune stopped out to visit Papa’s Polar Patch this week, Papa was quick to jump on the zip lines and give them a test run.
The ever-popular zip lines are just one of the fun, winter activities available during Papa’s Polar Patch — open Saturday, Sunday and Monday, Dec. 29-31 from 12-5 pm daily. Best of all, the zip lines are free during the polar patch.
Admission to Papa’s Polar Patch is $3/person (infants and toddlers 2 years and younger are free). The polar patch is located at 5001 Fernwood Drive, Bismarck, just like Papa’s Pumpkin Patch. Go north of Bismarck on River Road 1.5 miles, turn left on Sandy River Drive and go .75 miles. Turn right and go .5 mile north on Fernwood Drive.
Activities: You’ll find plenty of space to run and play outdoors at Papa’s with several groomed trails. There are the infamous bale mazes (now with snow tunnels), Slide Mountain, the Log Jam and the zip lines. Papa also has his old-fashioned sled rides for $1/person and horse-drawn sleigh rides for $2/person.
Make sure you bundle up well. Even with the temps in the teens or low 20s, the kids can’t stop themselves from wanting to play all afternoon! Papa has a warming house (the big red barn) with warm beverages and goodies to lure everyone inside for a few minutes to thaw our fingers and toes, along with an outdoor bonfire and the fixin’s to roast s’mores.
We hope to see you at Papa’s Polar Patch this weekend!
YES! We’ve got a 10-day forecast and it sounds like it will be warm enough to be outdoors and cold enough to keep the snow on the ground. We will open Papa’s Polar Patch on Dec. 29, 30 and 31 from 12-5 pm each day. Keep an eye on Papa’s website and his Facebook fan page before you plan your visit — it’s North Dakota and the weather changes often! We will plan to be open so long as the temperatures and the wind chill are above zero.
The admission to Papa’s Polar Patch is $3/person; infants and toddlers 2 years old and younger are free. Papa has turned the big red barn into a warming house where you’ll find hot chocolate, hot cider, warm chocolate chip cookies, pumpkin cookies (yes, we have to have them!) and a variety of cold beverages.
What will there be to do at Papa’s Polar Patch? Just like the pumpkin patch, there’s lots to keep you busy. Here’s the list of activities:
Infamous Bale Mazes: Papa’s bale mazes turn into snow caves during the polar patch and they’re still tons of fun to explore! (Free)
Zoomin’ Zip Lines: If you loved the two big zip lines during the pumpkin patch, you can come back for more during Papa’s Polar Patch. (Free!)
Log Jam: The logs are mostly snow covered but still available if you want to test your climbing and balancing skills. (Free)
Old-Fashioned Sled Rides: Everyone’s favorite, Papa has single sleds that can hold up to three people, and the triple sled (three sleds tied one behind the other) that can hold up to nine riders. The sleds are pulled by four wheelers and you choose your style: mild or WILD!! ($1/person)
Horse-drawn sleigh rides: The Dauenhauers return to Papa’s Polar Patch with their beautiful team of horses pulling you through the winter wonderland. ($2/person)
Outdoor Bonfire: It’s the perfect season to roast s’mores and warm your fingers and toes next to the fire. (Free; s’more packages are $1/each)
If you want to make some memories with the family during the holidays, Papa’s Polar Patch is a must. We’ll be open Saturday, Dec. 29, Sunday, Dec. 30 and Monday, Dec. 31 from 12-5 pm daily.
Up until this past weekend the answer to the question was easy. Papa needs snow to host a polar patch. We got about 5″ of snow this past weekend (Dec. 8) and now the answer isn’t as easy.
What is Papa’s Polar Patch you ask? In the years when we’ve had enough snow, Papa transforms his pumpkin patch into a bit of a winter wonderland — complete with snow caves (a winter version of the bale mazes), old-fashioned sled rides (see the photo to the left), horse-drawn sleigh rides, an ice pond for slipping and sliding, and sometimes a giant snow hill for short sled rides, climbing and tunneling.
Papa’s big red barn becomes a warming house complete with hot chocolate and warm chocolate chip cookies. There’s even all of the fixin’s for s’mores and a bonfire to prepare them.
Back to the question at hand: will there be a Papa’s Polar Patch this winter? We don’t know yet, and here’s why: if nothing changes, we have enough snow for one day of a polar patch. With all of the foot and sled traffic we’d generate, by the end of the day most of the pumpkin patch-turned-polar patch would be mud — including the parking lot.
The weather forecast is mixed and so here’s the bottom line (which isn’t helpful for our friends who love to have everything planned in advance): please keep an eye on Papa’s website and Facebook page. If we get a major snow fall and it looks promising, we’ll let you know as soon as we decide about opening Papa’s Polar Patch in 2012.
Thanks for your interest, and best wishes for a wonderful holiday season. Merry Christmas!