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September 27, 2012 | 12:00 a.m. CST
Apple-picking season is coming to a close, but plump pumpkins are waiting to be carved, baked or smashed. No matter how you use your pumpkins, there’s a cornucopia of activities at farms and patches this season.
Address: 1660 State Road M, Auxvasse
Reservations? Call for weekday appointments. No reservation required on weekends.
Open: Starting Sept. 29; Sat., 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sun., 2-6 p.m.
Other attractions: The last weekend of September marks the grand opening of Heavenly Harvest. Guests can see the variety of pumpkins offered at this patch. There are the traditional orange, but there are also unusual varieties, including some that are green and black. Heavenly Harvest encourages visitors to pick their own pumpkin, but there are many pre-picked decorative fall squashes and festive fall arrangements available, too.
Address: 24863 Highway 98, Boonville
Reservations? Groups should call ahead to book tours.
Open: Oct. 1 to Oct. 31, Mon. through Sat.,
10 a.m. until dark; Sun., 1 p.m. until dark
Other attractions: Guests can tour the scenery on a hayride around the farm before stopping at one of the barns to visit with the goats, chickens, rabbits and puppies. Peach Tree encourages visitors to pet and feed the animals. There is also a straw maze with a large section for kids and a small one for toddlers.
Address: 5910 Rangeline Road, Columbia
Reservations? Call ahead to make sure the farm is open and produce is available.
Open: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; closed on Tuesdays
Other attractions: At Pick and Pick, guests have the chance to experience farm life by heading to the fields and getting their hands dirty as they look for the perfect pumpkin. Come back in the spring and summer to pick strawberries, blackberries, tomatoes and more.
Address: 2927 County Road 253, Columbia
Reservations? Groups of 25 or more people can reserve hayrides.
Open: Now to Nov. 4; Fri., 4-9 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Sun., 2-6 p.m.
Other attractions: Shryocks is best known for its elaborate corn maze that challenges even the most directionally savvy. But not everything at Shryocks requires a stellar sense of bearing. A three-story gumball coaster in the Big Red Barn allows guests to watch their gum travel all the way up the handmade coaster before heading down to the ground again. Families can top off the day with a bonfire. Pumpkins are available for purchase but not for picking.
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