RAMONA, Calif. — When you pick a pumpkin this Halloween, you can do it one of two ways. Nice and friendly or with a haunted hay ride. In this Zevely Zone, I went to Ramona to visit the Harbour Farm and Vineyard Pumpkin Patch. "That looks like a man open for business," I said. "Hi, Jeff. Nice to see you. Welcome to our pumpkin patch," said Jeff Yeager, who is wearing a orange shirt with a jack-o'-lantern on the front.
Every October, pumpkin patches just seem to pop up out of nowhere, but Jeff Yeager is here to tell you, this labor of love started back in May when he plowed these fields. "How many pumpkins are we talking about?" I asked. "We've got thousands of pumpkins," said Yeager. "We've planted all of these pumpkins by hand me and my brother have helped out Dave who owns the farm has helped out." Dave Harbour, the owner of Harbour Farm and Vineyard, turned an empty lot into a fall family fun zone.
"You can pick one of these that we've already picked for you or you can get a wristband and go out into our patch and pick your own pumpkin," said Yeager. "Kids are going to love this," I said. "Oh yeah, kids love this this is the 7th year we've done this," Yeager added.
I headed out into the pumpkin patch with a wheel barrel. "What about that one?" I said. "Looks good," said Yeager. I cut it right off the vine and pronounced, "That's the ugliest looking pumpkin I've ever seen but it's perfect for a scary Halloween," I said. (For the record, my wife loves the look of the pumpkin.)
What would a pumpkin patch be without a haunted hay ride? The ride takes you to the haunted trail and creepy clown camp. Have I mentioned how I don't like creepy clowns? If you need a place to hide, I wouldn't suggest going underground. "Hey Jeff, plug your ears because this might be loud," said Yeager. The pumpkin patch has a mine with fake dynamite and gunpowder where kids big and small can pan for gems.
For just a few dollars, you and your kids can enjoy the pumpkin patch, the hay ride, and the gold rush. "We are going to find a gem or a fossil or something," said Yeager. Sure enough I struck it rich, first with the small stuff and then, "Wow, I'm going to put you guys out of business," I said, holding up a huge hunk of treasure.
When a tiny town takes a hit like that you could end up in a jail jumper as orange as the pumpkin I came here to buy. There's a barber shop, bank, general store and "I have a special place for you Jeff, the Marshall's office," said Yeager. He threw me in jail. What is the sentence for making corny TV?" I asked. "Three years," said Yeager. "It's country living."
The pumpkin patch is on the corner of Highway 67 and Rancho Maria. The address is 3154 Rancho Maria Lane. They will be open through Halloween.
For more information go to Harbour Fam and Vineyard Facebook page.