WORTH THE DRIVE: Fall fun on the farm with ‘Spookley’ storybook trail, corn mazes and bouncing pumpkin

Blooms and Berries kiddie play area includes a giant slide, a giant spiderweb to climb on, a pumpkin bounce pad, and duck races. CONTRIBUTED

The Blooms and Berries Farmers Market and Garden Center farm has been in the Probst family since 1939, but it wasn’t until 1999 that it was opened to the public.

“My parents started it when I was in junior high,” said Jeff Probst (no relation to the “Survivor” host that we know of). “They wanted to get me some work experience and help me pay for college, so they started with the farmer’s market.”

Probst went to college and came home to work on the weekends. He graduated and initially moved on with his life.

“I took a sales job for about six months,” he said. “Then I realized I had very little debt, no mortgage, so I decided to come back and help Mom.”

In 2020, Blooms and Berries is not only a full-blown farmers market and garden center but also a host for several family-friend fall activities.

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Blooms and Berries offers two corn mazes, a 15-20 minute mini-maze for young children and their families and a 5-acre, approximately one-hour maze for adults. CONTRIBUTED

The Corn Maze

Blooms and Berries offers two corn mazes, a 15-20 minute mini-maze for young children and their families and a 5-acre, approximately one-hour maze for adults. For the adult maze, you must find the six dragons in addition to finding your way out. Hole-punch cards for each dragon will mark your progress. The sixth and final dragon is full of pumpkin pie.

Pumpkin Patch Hayride

The hayride takes you through the one-acre pumpkin patch. Probst said the ride was primarily for scenery and picture-taking. If you want to get an actual pumpkin, there are plenty available in the retail and play area.

Farm Animals

There are several types of livestock on the farm, including goats, chickens, ducks, Flemish rabbits, a peacock, miniature pigs, donkeys, and the occasional pony.

“The goats are the stars of our show,” Probst said. “They’re Nigerian goats. They have a lot of personality and like interacting with people. The Flemish rabbits are bigger than some dogs. We work with another farm to bring in ponies for riding. They need a lot of care (so we don’t raise them ourselves).”

Blooms and Berries offers two corn mazes, a 15-20 minute mini-maze for young children and their families and a 5-acre, approximately one-hour maze for adults. CONTRIBUTED

Cow Train

A tractor will pull the cow train that bounces up and down.

“Spookley the Square Pumpkin”

The story of “Spookley the Square Pumpkin” is one of tolerance and acceptance. “Spookley is a square pumpkin, so he gets bullied a lot,” Probst said. “He’s not a Disney product, but he’s on the Disney Channel. He has a fun story about how despite being bullied, he saves the day, and October is Anti-Bullying Month.”

The “Spookley” storyboard trail is in the play area. “Spookley” books and merchandise are also available to purchase in the Market Barn.

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Blooms and Berries kiddie play area includes a giant slide, a giant spiderweb to climb on, a pumpkin bounce pad, and duck races. CONTRIBUTED

Play Area

In addition to “Spookley,” the kiddie play area includes a giant slide, a giant spiderweb to climb on, a pumpkin bounce pad, and duck races.

Farm Market

The farm market features several types of fruits and vegetables, from local honey to jams and jellies to grape tomatoes. The Market Barn features locally grown chicken, pork, and grass-fed beef.

Garden Center

The Garden Center sells garden solutions and accessories such as organic fertilizer, pest control products, wind chimes, butterfly and bee houses, and more.

Why Go?

Currently, at 61 acres, the Probsts are about to acquire 50 more acres for cultivating elderberries, pumpkins, and strawberries.

“We are a farm first, focused on production and growing,” Probst said. “So, we create that authentic farm experience (for our guests).”

Blooms and Berries kiddie play area includes a giant slide, a giant spiderweb to climb on, a pumpkin bounce pad, and duck races. CONTRIBUTED

Best Time to Go?

Probst said that Tuesdays and Thursdays tend to be less crowded, and Mondays when kids are out of school due to an Institute Day or some other reason. “With our attendance cap and the fact that we’re pretty spread out, it’s not bad,” he said.

COVID Restrictions

Blooms and Berries asks that everyone wear masks unless you have a medical restriction. Masks are required on the pumpkin hayride. Temperatures will be taken of everyone entering the farm. Attractions will be sanitized multiple times throughout the day. General attendance will be limited as well as on the pumpkin bounce pad. All ticket purchases take place online.

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Deals/Promotions?

On ½ Off Toddler Tuesdays, children ages 2-4 get half-price admission with a paying adult. Just select the Tuesday you want when you buy your ticket.

How to Go

What: Blooms and Berries

Where: 9669 S. SR 48, Loveland

When: 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m. Mondays-Sundays

Cost: $10 (Monday-Friday), $12 (Saturday-Sunday)

More Info: 513-697-9173 | www.bloomsandberries.com

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