Corn mazes, hay bales and a haunted farmhouse – it’s official, I now have all the fall feels.
Edmonton moms, please tell me you’ve taken your kids to Prairie Gardens & Adventure Farm. Located a scenic 40-minute drive from Edmonton – and even closer from my home here in St. Albert – this Bon Accord farm puts on a charming Halloween-themed festival that I’m making my family’s newest fall tradition!
I’d heard good things about the Haunted Pumpkin Festival so when I woke up yesterday and the sun was shining, I knew it would be a good day to call up my girl gang. I rounded up my mum, two sisters and baby Elle, and we rolled out to the countryside for a distinctly Albertan experience.
I don’t know what I was expecting – maybe a pumpkin or two and a petting zoo – but Prairie Gardens had a lot more activities going on than I’d anticipated!
We walked through the entrance and into a little village with rustic wooden storefronts including an old-time general store and ice cream stand. There were Halloween decorations EVERYWHERE. And I mean everywhere, from a giant pumpkin cottage to furry spiders hiding in trees and a ‘rated G’ haunted farmhouse.
The whole place had a wonderful atmosphere, with actors dressed as skeletons and witches roaming the grounds and welcoming guests.
Elle isn’t quite walking yet, but there were many baby-friendly activities for her to enjoy. Our favourites included a miniature hay bale maze, a petting zoo where she was quite smitten with the lambs and bunnies, and a spooky animatronic band that strummed haunted tunes.
As we explored, I kept a mental note of all the activities Elle will enjoy when she’s older. Greenhouses were transformed into pumpkin painting and craft making spaces, and kids gathered inside to enjoy a magic show, have their faces painted and excitedly request a balloon animal to take home.
There was a park featuring old-fashioned play structures, a station to pan for gemstones, roaring campfires, countless hay bales to climb and a trackless train. The highlight, however, was the five cornfield mazes of varying difficulty, as well as the pumpkin cannon (I think the Dads were more excited than the kids)!
Before leaving we grabbed a bite to eat from one of several food stands serving menu items like pumpkin pie, chilli and miniature caramel apples.
I appreciated how accessible the event was for families with strollers. We visited on a Sunday – an extremely busy day – and had to park in an overflow lot. It was seamless, though, as they had school buses to drive us to the entrance and a separate trailer to carry strollers.
When we headed out to Bon Accord yesterday, I didn’t know I’d end up feeling compelled to write about it (all these photos are from my trusty old iPhone!), but it was truly a fantastic day out.
If you haven’t been and are looking for something to do next weekend, the Prairie Gardens’ Halloween program will still be in full swing on October 28 and 29, 2017!
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