Pumpkin patch returns to Nederland Apostolic Church
NEDERLAND — One of the largest and most interactive pumpkin patches in Mid-County is going into its sixth year.
Greg Cockran, Nederland Apostolic Church member who volunteers his time to monitor the pumpkin patch, said the event started out for church members and grew to include the surrounding community.
“We were trying to do something for the community, for the people to have a place to go and take pictures as a family-type event, not necessarily for Halloween,” he said. “It started off for the church and then we opened it up to the public.
“Every year it’s getting bigger and bigger because we have several people in the church who just do an unbelievable job on the scenes and everything.”
The pumpkin patch includes different scenes and photo shoot opportunities with hay bails, an old tractor, festive benches, a barn and a picturesque couch surrounded by leaves and pumpkins. The patch is located at the church, 1308 S. 27th St. in Nederland.
“People will come out and they will take wedding pictures here,” Cockran said. “They will take graduation pictures and family pictures. Some will even bring a load of clothes for their kids to change into. It’s amazing.”
This year’s pumpkin patch includes new “zoo” animals made with hay, spray paint and various items found on the side of the road, in thrift shops or trash piles. Cockran said the church and community members make all the non-pumpkin items.
“The petting zoo is new,” he said. “The barn is new. We switch it up a lot. We typically make everything, but we buy a lot of things, too. We have an old tractor hood we bought for like $75. We try to make games for the kids, grow charts that sort of thing.”
Cockran said a popular item found at the pumpkin patch is an old tractor that had been refurbished and used for children to play and take pictures with.
“A friend of ours who owns Rutty and Morris Air Conditioning rebuilt this tractor,” he said. “He donates it and lets us use it. All the kids think it’s an unbelievable deal, this old tractor.”
Several games have also been constructed for small children including an optical illusion, tire roll, a growth chart and more.
Cockran said the pumpkins are shipped from New Mexico and range from the smallest size ringing in at $2 to the largest pumpkins shooting up to $50. The patch has upwards of 2,000 pumpkins.
“We buy the pumpkins and get them shipped here,” he said. “We get a lot of help from the schools to unload them. A lot of the clubs and schools will help us with that. Sometimes the other churches will come over to. It’s a fun time.”
This Saturday and on Oct. 26, the church will have a fall festival with a bake and link sale, jump houses and a train.
“It’s just a big family day,” Cockran said. “We’ve got some food trucks coming to give us some different looks at things.”
The pumpkin patch is open Monday-Friday from 4 p.m. to dark, Saturdays 10 a.m. to dark and Sundays after service from noon to dark.
“It is nuts,” Cockran said. “So many people come out here and enjoy themselves every year. It’s just a good family-friendly type deal.”
To learn more, visit Nederland Apostolic Church on Facebook.
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