Pumpkins, those orange icons of fall, are a great theme for an autumnal festival. And as a bonus, these events take place on working farms.

For anyone raised on Linus and “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown,” pumpkin patches provoke a healthy dose of nostalgia. But these gatherings go way beyond Linus’ patch, often featuring inflatable play areas, music, food, and other family-oriented fun.

Of course, there are plenty of pumpkins for purchase for carving, stacking, and cooking.

In Alabama, pumpkins grow best in the northern half of the state, and that’s where you’ll find most public pumpkin patches. (Southeast Alabama, we’ve got you covered.) Below are several that are open through Halloween week.

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The Great Pumpkin Patch (Hayden)

September 23 – November 5

Renovated attraction includes a train or wagon ride through the pumpkin patch, musical entertainment, a costume contest, country store, and food from Red Barn Kitchen or the Pie House. Kids’ attractions include a petting zoo, pony rides, and an inflatable park with ticketed attractions including the Great Jumpin’ Pumpkin, a bungee run, the Super Slide, and the tamer alternative Small Slide. Armbands for inflatable park, petting zoo, and a wagon ride with pumpkin are $10 daily for ages 16 and up; $13 weekdays and $20 weekends for ages 2-15. Open 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 1 p.m.-6 p.m. Sunday.

Aplin Farms (Dothan)

September 30 – October 31

Located between Dothan and Slocomb, attractions include a corn maze, train and wagon rides, corn crib, play area, animals, and pumpkin bowling. There’s a sunflower field, too. Music performers are set to appear on weekends. Pumpkins are sold separately. An $8 ticket provides admission to the wagon ride, the animal barn, and play area. All-access tickets are $12. Ages 2 and under get in free. Hours are 1 p.m. – 6 p.m. Wednesday-Friday and Sunday; and Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.

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Old Baker Farm (Harpersville)

September 30 – October 31

With themed events each weekend, it’s like Carnival, only with pumpkins. The first weekend will feature square dancers and dulcimer players, and the festival is open on Columbus Day. “Cowboy Day,” which recreates the OK Corral and includes music by bluegrass bands, follows on the 14th and 15th. American History Weekend, the 21st and 22nd, includes war reenactors and a Southeastern American Indian Camp. The finale, Festival Weekend, has an 18th-century-style carnival, arts and crafts vendors, and music performances. It’s open weekdays from 3 p.m.-5 p.m., Saturdays 9 a.m.-5 p.m., and Sundays 1 p.m.-5 p.m. Tickets are $13, with a $1 cash discount. Free admission to children age 1 and under.

Isbell’s Pumpkin Farm (Colbert County)

September 23 – November 5

Located on a family farm near Leighton, the annual event boasts inflatables, a hay maze, petting zoo and “safari walk,” gem mine, pony rides, and a “cow train” grazing the grounds. Learn about farm life in the past, and about the life cycle of a chicken. It’s designed for families, school and church groups, and even birthday parties. Open Thursday and Friday 3:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sunday 1 p.m.-6 p.m. Admission is $12; free for ages 24 months and under. Tickets for admission to the sunflower field, gem mining, animal feed, the cow train, and pony rides range from $1-$5. Pumpkins are $1-$10, depending on size. Discounts for school groups are available (call for reservations, 256-412-3046).

Tate Farms (Meridianville)

September 27 – October 28

The Tate family has farmed this land since 1867, and members have lived in the farm house since 1907, growing crops on what is now 8,000 acres in the Tennessee Valley. They farm plowed into agritainment (yep, it’s a word) in 1996, planting a pick-your-own pumpkin patch that today covers some 80 acres. Its 12 acres of play and entertainment space is big enough to mandate a map. The farm also offers school tours and corporate events. Tickets $20 for ages 2 and older. Season passes, starting at $50 also are available. But them online or at the barn. The season ends with a bang on Pumpkin Destruction Day, featuring an exploding giant gourd and big-tire vehicles; leftovers are smashed by attendees. There’s a fireworks show, too.