As soon as the first few gusts of fall air hit the Red River Valley, children start making plans for Halloween.  Heck, we now see stores stocking the latest and greatest costumes just after the Fourth of July.  This is progress — the more time a kid has to plan out the perfect Halloween costume, the better!

Trick-or-treating is a time-honored Halloween tradition that enthralls children of all ages.  It certainly isn’t the holiday’s only one, though, as it’s also a great time for family outings.  One such option is Glyndon, Minnesota’s Buffalo River Pumpkin Patch, a locally-owned and operated business that has been providing exhilarating yet family-friendly Halloween fun for well over a decade.

The Pumpkin Patch is owned by Mike and Mindy Halvorson, along with Mike’s parents.  “We originally got involved with the Pumpkin Patch by providing horse-drawn rides for the Tonnesen Pumpkin Patch before it closed,” Mike explained.  The Halvorsons then opened Buffalo River at their home in 2004.  “Each year we try to add or change things up a bit to improve the Pumpkin Patch for our visitors,” he said.  “This year we expanded our pick-your-own patch from one to two patches.  We are excited to offer more space for families to find the perfect pumpkin.”

Over the years, Buffalo River has grown into an amalgamation of exciting activities for all ages.  In addition to horse-drawn rides through the Not So Scary Haunted Forest, a petting zoo, barrel car rides, a straw maze, and the opportunity to stroll through Papa Bob’s Village, families can enjoy a game area, Young Tykes Trike Track, duck races, and many photo opportunities.

“We love that the Pumpkin Patch is a family event and watching families spending a fall day together,” Mike explained.  “Some of our customers make sure to check in with us year after year, and it is great to be part of their family traditions.”  Mike believes that Halloween continues as such a popular family holiday because it offers something for everyone to enjoy.  “Carving a pumpkin and dressing up in costumes is something families, couples, and friends can do together,” he said.  “I think people not only love Halloween, but fall in general, with the colorful leaves, football, and cooler weather.”

To those that have never been to the Buffalo River Pumpkin Patch, Mike would like to extend a sincere invitation.  “Buffalo River Pumpkin Patch can be a deceiving name.  We have had many people come out that are amazed by the setting and all the activities taking place,” he said.  “Some were thinking it was going to be a quick trip to grab a pumpkin and end up staying for a few hours.  We are definitely more than just pumpkins!”

The Buffalo River Pumpkin Patch is located at 14447 Highway 10 and will be open from September 23rd to October 29th.  Hours of operation are Friday from 3:00 to 6:00 pm and Saturdays and Sundays from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.  There is a $5 gate admission fee and some activities cost extra.  A complete list of attractions and their corresponding prices is available at


By Jamee Larson