Saturday, October 22, 2011

Finding the perfect pumpkin at Carpinito Brothers Farm

Last weekend our family was on a mission to find the perfect pumpkin. The kids have been begging for one ever since the grocery store put big bins of them in front of their store, but I didn't want to get ours that way. I wanted to buy one from the source and pluck it from the ground and give my suburban children the family farm experience complete with corn mazes and fall colors and photo ops.
We searched online - - and the closest one we found was Carpinito Brothers Farm right off highway 167 in Kent, so we decided to make that our Saturday excursion.
It was a popular site that day and we had to park in the far lot but luckily we noticed plenty of wheel barrows available for hauling your produce picks back to your car. We wandered through the pumpkin patch pointing out the ones we thought were the best. There were so many! We waited until the end to get one though because we didn't want to have to lug it around with us while we were in the corn maze.

That's Mt. Rainier in the distance. Can you see it?


Carpinito Brothers Farm has TWO corn mazes - one "Huskies" maze in the shape of a football and helmet and one "Cougars" maze in the shape of, well, I couldn't figure out what it was but someone told me it was a cougar face. Not being sports fans or Washington natives, we had no allegiance to either school so we went in both, and there were times when I feared we'd never find our way out.


It's funny, the people your run into in a corn maze. Some follow the map and know exactly where they're going, determined to make it all the way through and gather hole punches in their card along the way. Most though, are lost and wandering around wide-eyed and a wee bit worried. It becomes a group effort to get through it with the map-tracking determined ones helping the lost find their bearings. We were, at times, both of these types and after nearly 3 and a half miles of maze-wandering, the wide-open pumpkin patch was a welcoming site.

Next, we headed to the produce stand where we picked out apples, onions, Swiss chard, cabbage, and squash. Then, we each picked out a decorative gourd - the ugliest, weirdest, wartiest ones we could find, and I got some flowers for our front porch. Lastly, and after some debate, we found our pumpkin - a great big 20-pounder, perfectly plump with a stable base and smooth canvas for carving. We got everything weighed, paid, and hauled a wheel barrow back to the car brimming with our autumn bounty.

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