Pumpkin patches aren’t hard to find this time of year.
Just about every supermarket will have a section decorated to look rustic and full of fall foliage complete with the seasonal harvest.
But why not go for the real thing?
Just off of Highway 120 East of Oakdale sits Bloomingcamp Ranch – a sprawling farm that features some of the bountiful fruits and vegetables that are available in the Northern San Joaquin Valley.
And in October, that means pumpkins.
The last weekend in September the unique haunt holds its own Harvest Festival to usher in the change of season that most people associate with the changing of the weather.
Those that visit Bloomingcamp Ranch this weekend will still be graced with the 90-degree weather that has been hovering for the better-part of the last month, but that doesn’t mean that they get a full-taste of fall and everything that goes with it.
“There’s just something about a place that grows its own fruits and vegetables,” said visitor Trinity Gielski. “Where I live you don’t have fresh like you have here so it’s a nice change of pace.
“I’d love to have something like this back home, but being here today and seeing all of this is something that I’ll definitely relish why I’m here. Halloween and Thanksgiving are my favorite holidays of the year, and that’s all I can see when I’m here.”
Part of Bloomingcamp Ranch’s unique charm is the fact that the stand, which is situated outside of town, serves as a fully functional fruit stand along a stretch that is littered with them. It’s the last spot for Yosemite-bound to grab some of the valley’s bounty before hitting the mountains, and it boasts some of the freshest in-season items around to complement an extensive assortment of pies and other goodies.
And on top of that, it’s beautiful.
The grounds also double as a backdrop for weddings and special events.
Bloomingcamp Ranch is located at 10528 E. Highway 120 and is open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is free. For additional information visit www.bloomingcampranch.com or call 209.847.7437.