From plucking your own pumpkins to toasting s’mores around a private fire pit after a run through a haunted corn field, the Longmont area’s farms are all about fall fun (and scares)! Boulder County has more than 850 farms, and many of them host everything from harvest dinners to fall-themed festivals as well as bountiful farm stands where you can stock up on squash, apples, corn and other good stuff for stews and pies. Whether you’re a gourmand, scare-seeker, or history buff, here’s five local farms in and around Longmont to visit this fall.
Apples and a Murder Mystery Dinner at YaYa Farm and Orchard
Apples are the star of the show this time of year at YaYa Farm and Orchard. The farm stand sells apples and all kinds of apple goodies like apple cider donuts, apple pies and more. The farm’s Applefest takes place from 3:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Oct. 21 and Oct. 22. Tickets are $5 for kids 3 and under; $22 for kids 10 and under; and $45 for adults, 11 years and up. Tickets include a barbecue plate from Nordy’s barbecue, plus apples and apple cider donuts as well as live bluegrass music providing the soundtrack. For a unique Halloween-themed event, YaYa is also hosting Boofest from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Oct. 28. The murder mystery dinner on the farm is a 16-and-up event. Guests can participate in a pumpkin-carving contest, enjoy a chili dinner with a topping station and jalapeno cornbread, and sip on cider made with YaYa’s apples. Costumes are optional, but bring layers and blankets because the air will be crisp. Boofest tickets are $80. 6914 Ute Hwy., Longmont; yayafarmandorchard.com
Fall Fun and Terror in the Corn at Anderson Farms
Those who claim fall as their favorite season should definitely head to Anderson Farms for the autumnal festivities. The farm has a fall festival that takes place from Sept. 20 to Oct. 30, with timed-entry tickets starting at $17 and anytime tickets starting at $27. Kids 3 and under are free. Family attractions include combine slides, a wooden train, a corn maze, a pumpkin cannon, wagon rides to the pumpkin patch and more. One of the region’s best haunted houses is at Anderson Farms. Terror in the Corn is a mile-long haunted attraction with a massive corn field and abandoned buildings to wander through. For a double scare feature. Terror in the Corn tickets start at $39. Private fire pits are also available to rent and s’mores kits are for sale. 6728 County Road 3 1/4, Erie; andersonfarms.com
Art and History at the Agricultural Heritage Center
The Agricultural Heritage Center is a pastoral time capsule that shows what it was like to farm in the area from 1900 to 1925. The site has a historic farmhouse furnished with items from 1910, a pair of barns, an outhouse, a milkhouse, an heirloom garden, a blacksmith shop and interactive exhibits. Animals like chickens, pigs, draft horses and sheep are on site at the farm typically from April through October.
Beyond the history, the rural area also has art on display in the barn. The heritage center is one of the locations for agriCULTURE, which is a contemporary art exhibit that pairs artists and farmers to create site-specific visual works with farming as a muse. A recent exhibit, for instance, featured Amanda McCavour’s “Ode to a Prairie (Part 2)” that included fabric panels embroidered with plants and grasses.
The agricultural center is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from April 1 to Oct. 31. During the off-season (Nov. 1 to March 31), hours are limited to 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the first Saturday of the month. Guided tours start at 11 a.m. during visiting hours and no reservations are required. 8348 Ute Hwy, Longmont; bouldercounty.gov/open-space/education/museums/agricultural-heritage-center
Dine on a Farm with Farow
Niwot’s Farow restaurant is farm-to-table year-round, sourcing roughly 90 percent of the restaurant’s ingredients from within a 10-mile radius. But the restaurant has also been doing a farm dinner series. The next dinner will be 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sept. 17 at Buckner Ranch, and it will double as Farow’s second anniversary dinner with champagne and extra goodies. The four-course dinner comes with wine pairings. Tickets are $150. farowrestaurant.com
Farm Dinners with Ollin Farms
Dine al fresco on Ollin Farms amid cottonwood trees. The Summer Farm Dinner Series features local chefs crafting meals with the farm’s produce. Guests can bring their own bottles of wine to the farm. The farm has a few more dinners left in this year’s series: 5 p.m. Sept. 16 with Chef Madhoo Seth from Roots; 5 p.m. Oct. 7 with Chef Leroy Alvarado from La Vita Bella; 5 p.m. Oct. 14 with Chef Gary and Ashley Southard from The Magic Food Bus. Tickets are $90. ollinfarms.com.
By Brittany Anas | Longmont Magazine