“What we’ve created here is a one-stop shop,” said pumpkin patch owner Brandon Helfer. “We have all the Halloween costumes, home decor, anything you could possibly think of. It’s essentially a megastore.”
Added Helfer, “We want our customers to come to have a good time, experience the patch and be able to get their costumes, and they’re not running around all over.”
The idea, said Helfer, was to create a place where people can come in and get their pumpkins, a Halloween costume, or to bring their kids to frolic in the bounce houses or at the pumpkin-carving and game-playing stations, all geared toward pumpkins, at the popular festive fall La Jolla attraction.
There’s even a petting zoo for youngsters.
“We’ll have little chickens, bunnies and guinea pigs,” said Helfer of his menagerie.
The pumpkin patch morphs into Mr. Jingles Christmas Trees, the family’s other seasonal business, starting Thanksgiving running through Yuletide.
Helfer said this is the eighth year his family has sold Christmas trees, the third year for Halloween and the second year for costumes at the La Lolla vacant corner lot.
“Our game plan is to create an experience for people,” said Helfer adding they host lots of school and church field trips treating them to pumpkin carving, story time and all the different accessories and attractions for kids.
Though the pumpkin patch is open less than a month, planning for it actually takes considerably longer. Pumpkins for the patch were ordered a month ago from Northern California. It takes a full three days to set up the patch with all its accessories and attractions.
But it’s all worth it, said Helfer.
“Our customers have a great time here and it’s family oriented,” he said noting, “We have a haunted maze in the back with fog. It’s a cool setup.”
There is no charge to enter the pumpkin patch. Tickets selling for $1 are available to pay for the various attractions and games kids play.
The popular pumpkin patch is also in the Halloween home-decor business.
“We have things people like to decorate their homes with like tombstones and ghosts,” said Helfer. “We do pumpkin and hay deliveries to people’s homes. Our goal is to make it as convenient as possible for our guests.”
Pumpkins costing $3 to $50 depending on size can be delivered for a fee depending on location. A hay bale will set you back $15.
There are even pumpkins for cooking available through the patch. Costumes sell in the $10 to $75 range.
Helfer said he’ll offer a 10 percent discount for those who found out about the pumpkin patch through the La Jolla Village News.