Friday 14 October 2022

Laity Pumpkin Patch Maple Ridge has a Pumpkin Cannon

This year I challenged myself to go beyond my favourites and visit new pumpkin patches in the Lower Mainland. Laity Pumpkin Patch is in the mountains of Maple Ridge and is so massive that they have two farms across the street from one another - North and South! I went to Laity Pumpkin Patch South. 

The primary reason I made the drive out to Maple Ridge was to see Laity's Pumpkin Cannon in action. The massive air compressor launches a fresh pumpkin at a stacked pyramid of blue barrels. Watching a pumpkin being launched at high velocity and its guts exploding on impact was awesome. Laity Pumpkin Canon launches every hour and everyone near and far on the property hurries over to watch the pumpkin go boom. 
I have never been to a busier pumpkin patch. So many people and so many pumpkins! Laity grows their pumpkins on-site, so you get to pick your perfect pumpkin straight from the vine. This is not the case for many farms in the Lower Mainland - the ones that have shiny clean pumpkins neatly arranged into rows is a sign that the pumpkins were trucked in and not actually grown at that property. You get the full experience of walking through a muddy field - albeit dry this year due to Vancouver's sunny streak - and tripping over the plants!

The Laity Pumpkin Patch South is also where you will find the popular pumpkin village. There is a school, general store, sheriff's office and another building made to look like they are built out of pumpkins. 

In addition to the pumpkins, there are several activities for kids like bowling, shuffleboard, connect four and my personal favourite, ping pong ball trick shots. The best was the obstacle course for the kids. Think American Ninja Warriors in terms of difficulty, but built by your dad with zero safety in mind. You do not have to agree with me, but safe playgrounds are boring! The structures were literally swaying side to side as kids piled onto the rope or launched themselves from a platform.  I could not get a picture of those areas as it was heavily crowded. 

I love animals and Laity Patch South had a variety of farm animals. What baffled me was the number of parents that lacked common sense. I felt stressed for the animals watching parents encourage kids to feed random food to the animals and worse, use long sticks to poke and drag animals closer to the fence. This could have all been avoided if The Laity Farm did not have a pre-teen overseeing the animal enclosures. 

Both properties have an entrance fee of $12 each on weekends and $9 on a weekday. To clarify, if you want to visit both farms, you will pay twice because the entrance fee is only for one farm. I went to Laity Pumpkin Patch South as it is recommended for ages 4 and up while their Northern counterpart is better suited for guests under 6 years old. While both farms have a U-Pick pumpkin patch and farm animals, there are additional attractions that set the two apart. Needless to say, the North farm is far more relaxed and the South farm has plenty of entertainment to keep even the most hyperactive member of your family entertained. In terms of food, Laity had hotdogs and some packaged snacks and that was it. 


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