Fall is creeping its way in and with it comes all of my favorite things: my birthday, halloween, pumpkin-spiced everything, apple ciders donuts, etc. I attribute it to being raised in New England (specifically Connecticut) and experiencing the perfect fall…so I have high expectations for this season. I try to visit an orchard or pumpkin farm almost every year, so that I can happily check a bunch of my fall-favorites off the list. This year two of my friends suggested we check out Fall Festival at Cox Farms in Centreville, VA. Usually the best time to go to these farms is mid-October, but since they knew the impending arrival of baby #2, we went yesterday instead.
I’ve been to a few orchards and pumpkin patches in the DC area, but this one is by far my favorite for a few reasons:
- The price- free parking, $10 admission for kids/adults (free for under 2 yrs), the price includes most of the attractions AND a mini-pumpkin to take home with you
- The amount of activities they offer (read more below)
- They thought of families with children of all ages. Including stroller parking areas and water stations. There’s something for the wee ones and the big kids too.
- You can bring outside food/drink without the obligation to buy any on-site food
We all packed some picnic food to share amongst ourselves for lunch prior to going into the venue. There were a few picnic tables outside, but we realized later that there were many many more inside as well.
Live bluegrass band playing on the main stage. I don’t think these kids had ever heard a banjo played before, but it was entertaining to watch them dance.
Duck Races: old-fashioned water pumps to push plastic duckies down the chute. Duckies and Water…that’s a party in itself for toddlers.
Farm animals: Cows+calves, Pigs+piglets, and goats. At this age the kids are learning basic farm/zoo animals through their nursery rhymes, books and puzzles. It was awesome to let them match a name with the live animal! The calf and little piglets were only a few days old, which was so cute to see…although watching 10 piggies aggressively nurse from their mama was giving me PTSD/anxiety about returning to breastfeeding….eeeeek! Chase was a little overwhelmed in the goat pen, but really liked chasing the tiny baby goat and even tried to kiss it. Sanitizer and hand wipes came in handy after that.
Tractor Museum: For the boys, this was heaven. Chase is obssessed with any type of transportation: planes, trains, cars, tractors. To be able to ride on one was so much fun for him, he was beaming from ear to ear. They had at least 10 different tractors on display.
Slide: There are multiple slides at this farm. We (not including myself) went on two of the intermediate ones since the little ones could ride on our laps. There is also a small kid slide and an even larger wave slide on the property. I think the adults enjoyed it the most and the kids were just there for the ride…literally.
Hayride: This was one of the main attractions of the farm. There was a disclaimer warning about the ride being potentially “too bumpy”…well I’m too bumpy right now ok? I was willing to take the risk, and let me tell you, it wasn’t more bumpy than the pot-holes I hit on a daily basis. However, I do appreciate their consideration for us preggos! The hayride was very interactive, with aliens coming out of a spaceship to give high-fives to the kids, witches stirring a cauldron, cowboys riding along side the wagon, and a few big puddles to trudge through. Even though our kids were in zombie-state from being overdue for their naps, I could see this being really entertaining in the next few years.
Cornmaze: We missed this one, but it looked fun!
There were so many other activities and attractions that we didn’t see since they’re so little right now and also because their energy levels were fading.
At the farm exit, they let each person take a free pumpkin (well it’s included in the admission price). Their honey crisp apples, apple cider, apple cider donuts were the bomb.com!! Chase was a big fan of the tractor souvenirs, so we obviously had to get one of those.
Overall this is an awesome place for families to come for fall festivities if you live in the DMV area. It’s about 45 minutes from DC and worth the trip! Happy autumn 🙂