How fitting that we end our tour of smaller pumpkin patches in the Lower Mainland at a farm best known as a top U-Pick berry spot. We went west to Emma Lea Farms to pay homage to one of the oldest family run farms in BC now in their 5th generation of farming.
This 100% organic farm first started in 1885 when Joseph Tamboline immigrated from Italy and met his wife Myra EMMA Falkner in 1891 (Yes, the name of the farm is a nod to his wife). This family-owned farm has been in operation for over a century and was awarded the BC Century Farm and Ranch Award by the Minister of Agriculture in 1994.
Emma Lea Farms has since grown with each generation in size and scale now offering beans, peas, rutabaga, beets, cabbage and have a SPCA Certified beef cattle herd, free range laying chickens, miniature donkeys, a rescue mule, two retired quarter horses and dogs on their farm. Every spring, they plant their crop of pumpkins to host their Fall at the Farm during October. They even set up elaborate pumpkin displays and an “Oat Maze” where they hide hilarious jokes scattered throughout the pumpkin field for children to enjoy.
With the Emma Lea Grocery Store, The Ice Cream Shoppe and the playground/ picnic area fully operational, you can quite easily spend half the day here having an outdoor playdate with precautions and physical distancing with a friend. What a great day it was!
Who knew that berries turn into pumpkins come Fall? Magical.
How To Plan Your Visit
- Open air play space with; (1) a small Emma Lea Grocery Store, (2) Ice Cream
Shoppe—serving hot food and drinks, (3) Emma’s Fire pit—where you can roast S’mores and hot dogs available for purchase, (4) Playground and picnic area—swings, slides, climbing apparatus, toss games, picnic tables to enjoy the weather and have lunch
- Massive 3-acre fields in the backdrop offering views and of course fruits and berries
squashes around the seasons.
Admission and Hours
- Thursday—Sunday: 9-5pm
- Halloween OPEN: 9-5pm (last day for the pumpkin patch & Oat Maze)
- Farm will remain open in November
- FREE admission you pay for what you pick (cash or debit only)
- Plentiful FREE parking on-site
Fully functional washroom on site with proper COVID precautions and social distancing rules in effect— baby change available table on-site
What to Bring/ What to Wear
- Rainboots and coat, even extra clothes & extra shoes for this farm—by far the MUDDIEST patch we’ve visited this season. Fun!
- Bring your own mask to this location. Provincial guidelines recommend wearing a mask in public spaces at all times.
- Wagons are offered on-site, yet the site is large, wide and flat and is very stroller-friendly. this is a non pet-friendly farm, please keep your paw friends at home.
- Spend the day while physically distancing— plenty of space, picnic tables, very nice
Emma Lea Farms
The author behind @buddycons, Connie writes about her detailed adventures with her kids around BC (& beyond), believer of 'presence over presents' in motherhood & literacy development in children. She shares ideas on simple toddler craft projects, home organization & gentle minimalism with having less. She lives in the Metro Vancouver area with her husband & two kiddos. Before becoming a mom, she worked in the Financial Industry and is a two-time award winning People Leader. Follow her adventures & updates on Instagram @buddycons.