It’s Starting To Feel Like Christmas in September!

bale buddiesThe checklists are long and the excitement is building at Papa’s Pumpkin Patch. There’s no other way to compare it than to say the family is almost as excited as if Christmas was just 10 days away!

Opening day is Sunday, Sept. 13 at noon, and we can hardly wait. Each day, more of the puzzle pieces are in place, and that means the pumpkins will start to arrive soon! The amazing bale mazes are almost completely built; the zip line towers are under construction. Papa’sville is in place and so is Papa’s brand new Pumpkin Popper! The train routes are being planned, and JoJo’s Gift Store looks terrific!

Admission remains $4/person and toddlers two years and under are still free. Our pumpkins will be priced from $.50 to $20 each (perhaps a little more for some of the Atlantic Giants we expect to harvest). We could keep going but you get the idea.

We are anxious to welcome you to Papa’s and share our love of the outdoors and the fall season with you!

See you soon,


An Amazing Tribute to Mrs. P

mrsp and sandyPapa and the family have no words to express the gratitude we feel in our hearts for the Bismarck-Mandan Retired Teachers Association. They were one of our first volunteer groups three decades ago to help with the many field trips that bring children to Papa’s Pumpkin Patch each fall. Today, they are honoring Mrs. P in a truly special way.

every pumpkin is perfect book coverThe Retired Teachers Association will present copies of Every Pumpkin Is Perfect to the library media specialists in the area so each school will have Papa’s story available to children. The books are being given in Mrs. P’s memory. (Here’s a link to the KFYR TV story about Mrs. P and the presentation.)

Mrs. P is the affectionate name we give to Suzie Pearce — our mom, grandmother, mother-in-law, friend and confidante. She passed away during the final week of Papa’s Pumpkin Patch in 2014 after scheduling thousands of field trips for more than 150,000 children during the first 32 years at Papa’s.

Truly we say thank you to the Retired Teachers Association for remembering Mrs. P in this way!


One Month From Today: Papa’s Is Open!

back yard full of pumpkins and people loMaybe it’s fitting the temperatures dropped from 100 yesterday to the 70s. At least for Papa it’s a “cool” reminder that Papa’s Pumpkin Patch will welcome visitors beginning Sunday, Sept. 13 — just one month from today!

Yes, the family is getting excited. Our 2015 season runs from Sept. 13 through Saturday, Oct. 24, weather permitting. We will be open 12-7 pm daily, and the number of new activities and changes to some of your favorites is a big part of our excitement.

Aanders in corn cribFor example, where did Papa put his Corn Crib? It’s not easy to hide a 30′ x 50′ tent with 300 bushels of corn inside, but the Corn Crib moved to a new location and kids will have fun searching for it.

You’ll also find the Zoomin’ Zip Lines, the Log Jam, Papa’sville Play Structures, The Great Pumpkin’s Chair and Billy Bob the Corn Stalk Horse also have new homes somewhere in Papa’s Pumpkin Patch.

We’ll keep you updated over the next few weeks on the fun things you can expect during a visit to Papa’s this fall. For now, mark your calendars! Papa’s Pumpkin Patch opens one month from today!

Take good care,


Papa Loves United Way Day of Caring!

Basin Electric Power Cooperative provided more than 30 volunteers for the Day of Caring project at Papa's Pumpkin Patch.

Basin Electric Power Cooperative provided more than 30 volunteers for the Day of Caring project at Papa’s Pumpkin Patch.

It’s the hottest day in 2015 and Papa welcomed dozens of volunteers for the United Way Day of Caring. A M A Z I N G. That’s all the family knows to say about the effort, the sweat and the joy these volunteers brought to the work they accomplished all across Papa’s Pumpkin Patch. We are especially grateful to the employees at Basin Electric Power Cooperative, Keitu Engineering and Bismarck Public Schools for their volunteer “muscle!” (Check out the cool story about the day on KXMB TV.)

Hundreds of wooden benches, play structures and fence rails were sealed or painted, depending on their use. The Super Sandbox got a brand, new coat of color; the large tent Super Sandboxfor the Corn Crib was moved to a new location; and Papa’s fleet of wagons were cleaned up, aired up and made ready for the busy season ahead. In addition multiple other projects were completed like the Pedal Park race track, touch ups and cleaning in the Nature Trail, and the Monster Wagon Ride was readied for families who want a tour of Papa’s when they visit.

2015 marks the fourth year Papa’s has been welcomed as a Day of Caring project. This year, nearly 1,000 volunteers gave of their time, talent and energy to 40 different projects in the Bismarck-Mandan community. We count ourselves so very fortunate that Papa’s Pumpkin Patch is located just outside one of the best communities in the country! We look forward to the many charities we will be able to support this fall!

We hope to see you soon,


You Know It’s Almost August When…

pumpkins are turning - 1There’s lots of ways to know it’s August in North Dakota, and there are some sure-fire ways to recognize the month at Papa’s Pumpkin Patch. Top on the list is that the pumpkins are turning orange!

Most of the flowers that will be pollinated and turn into fruit on the vine are now set. That means the fields are filled with all sizes of pumpkins, including the early birds who are now starting to turn that amazing color we all love to see in the fall.

You can notice it’s August in other ways, too. The broom corn, known for it’s decorative and colorful tassels, is starting to head out. By late August and early September, we’ll begin to see the heads turn all sorts of brilliant fall colors and create almost a fan-like shape at the end of the stalks. broom grass heading out - 1

In August, Papa and the family also begin to finalize the location for all of our pumpkin patch activities, and we begin the “sprucing up” of the farm: wagon repairs, paint touch ups and two or three dozen other things.

One thing’s for sure — we want to be ready for all of our guests when we open the pumpkin season on Sunday, Sept. 13 at noon!

Take good care and we hope to see you this fall,