Fall Family Adventure
The leaves are turning and the morning air is crisp, so grab a sweater, pack the kids, and get ready to enjoy the abundance of the season by spending a few days experiencing Autumn Harvest on some very special farms. Whether you prefer hunting the perfect pumpkin, going for hayrides, or picking your own apples, here’s one thing we can all agree on: Exploring together is how memories are made. Here are some ideas for how you can enjoy the abundance of the season.
Get Some Apples To-Go from Noble Orchards
Before the pumpkin search begins, you should first head up the ridge to pick fresh-from-the-tree apples at the popular Noble Orchards in Paradise. First established in 1921, Noble Orchards is one of the last remaining apple orchards in Butte County. While the November 2018 Camp Fire destroyed their cold storage facility, the trees survived and are now laden with delicious, fresh apples.
Make sure to check out their Facebook page for current hours and to see what variety is currently ripe and ready for u-pick adventures.
Pick the Perfect Pumpkin at The Peterson Sisters Pumpkin Patch
Your first pumpkin stop should be at Peterson Sisters Pumpkin Patch back in Chico, where you can enjoy fresh baked pumpkin goods and a trip through the hay maze. Originally the project of the sisters while they were in high school, they now operate this land with volunteers from the Future Farmers of America. They grow an assortment of pumpkins, including Giant Pumpkins—which aren’t for the faint of heart.
Make sure you check their operating hours; the sisters’ pumpkin patch kicks off the 2022 season on September 24 and is open Fridays from 3pm to sunset and Saturdays & Sundays from 10am to sunset.
Enjoy Farm Animals and Hayrides at TJ Farms
Each year, TJ Farms and the Moss family opens their farm to the public for their Fall Pumpkin Patch. Grab a wagon and take a stroll among the over 14 varieties of pumpkins in the pumpkin field. There are also hay rides, a hay bale obstacle course, and a country store with gourmet products available for purchase. The entire farm experience is enhanced with the opportunity to pet and feed the farm animals.
The pumpkin patch opens the first Saturday in October and is open weekends 10am-6pm and weekdays 2pm-6pm through Halloween, as long as pumpkins are available.
Lunch at Woodstock's
For lunch, spend some time at Chico favorite Woodstock’s Pizza for a couple of slices. With a wide menu that includes gluten-free and dairy-free opens and a fun-filled atmosphere, it’s a great place to relax and have fun.
Discover Pumpkins and Animals at Book Family Farm
After lunch, make the short drive to Durham for more pumpkin adventures at Book Family Farm. In addition to their Fall Pumpkin Patch, the Book Family Farm is passionate about growing healthy food and use their farm to inform both children and adults about real food. They teach that “it matters what you eat and what you eat, eats too!” They grow grass fed beef, pastured pork, and pastured poultry. All of their products are only sold on the farm.
Enjoy the pumpkin patch October 1st-31st, Tues.-Sat. 9am-6pm.
Learn at the Patrick Ranch Museum
Step back in time at the Patrick Ranch Autumn Fest. On Saturday and Sunday from October 8 through October 23, the historic ranch will offer house tours, pony cart and tractor rides, and plenty of pumpkins. The museum is dedicated to enhancing people’s understanding and appreciation of the community’s rich agricultural heritage. It is also a great place to bring a picnic!
Discover the Annual Salmon Migration
And of course, a Butte County Fall Family Adventure isn't complete without a visit to the Oroville Feather River Fish Hatchery to witness to the annual salmon spawn starting in mid-September through mid-November. Enjoy an up-close view through the underwater viewing window or watch as they swim up the fish ladder.
The viewing window is open at all times, while the main hatchery is normally open daily from 7am-3pm—make sure check current hours and stop in for a tour!
Stay at a Kid-Friendly Hotel
Butte County offers a variety of lodging options that welcome your kiddos and your fur babies.