This month, Walton EMC customer-owners John and Donna Washington will open their farm in Bogart for fall fun that includes a pick-your-own pumpkin patch and corn maze.
Walton EMC customer-owners help families make memories
“Making memories since 1993” is more than an advertising slogan at Washington Farms. Owners John and Donna Washington embrace it as a personal mission statement. And the broad smiles and echoing laughter of families who visit their farm for fall fun are a testament that the Walton EMC customer-owners are achieving their goal.
This month, Washington Farms opens for the fall season. A pick-your-own pumpkin patch and 8.5-acre corn maze headline a broad offering of agriculture-inspired activities that provide hours of entertainment — and a memorable experience — for visitors of all ages.
“We want people to come out and have fun as a family.”
“We want people to come out and have fun as a family,” said John. “My greatest joy is to hear real conversations between parents and their children, with no distractions, while they’re picking a pumpkin or going on a hay ride. I hope it’s something they’ll always remember.”
With no long lines and lots of open spaces, the outdoor venue encourages running and playing in a safe environment, added Donna.
“So many times today, families spend their time watching things together. We give them the alternative: getting out of the house and doing things together,” she said.
Washington Farms visitors take a ride on the grain train.
Fun for all
Though the farm is open for berry picking in the spring and summer, fall is THE season at Washington Farms. A team of 130 well-trained employees — mostly college and high school students — is on hand to help the Washington family entertain guests with more than 30 attractions.
Children can burn plenty of energy riding on the grain train, playing in the corn box, climbing on hay bale mountain and engaging with farm animals in the petting zoo. Teens and adults alike will enjoy the recently added zip line, playing paintball or taking a nighttime walk through the corn maze.
There’s a new corn maze theme each year, with the 2020 design due
to be revealed on the farm’s Facebook page this month.
There’s a new corn maze theme each year, with the 2020 design due to be revealed on the farm’s Facebook page this month. “This year’s theme is one we think is pretty special and very timely,” said John, giving vague clues about the image carved out in a field of growing corn.
Popular with all ages are the pig races. Emceed by John, the races pit the farm’s own porkers against each other in a squealing, grunting sprint to the finish line.
The pig races are a crowd pleaser during fall activities at Washington Farms.
A tradition begins
It was necessity rather than creativity that led to the autumn activities at Washington Farms, John confessed.
“I loved working outdoors and playing in the dirt, so I decided we were going to be strawberry farmers,” he said, tracing the genesis of the venture he, his wife and five children launched 27 years ago. After struggling to break even the first two years, the Washingtons’ strawberry crop was “wiped out” in year three.
With only enough money left to raise one more crop, the farming family took a leap of faith and planted pumpkins. Their you-pick pumpkin patch attracted more than 3,000 schoolchildren that first year — and fall fun in northern Georgia has been synonymous with Washington Farms ever since.
For many, spending an autumn day at Washington Farms
has become a family tradition.
For many, spending an autumn day at Washington Farms has become a family tradition.
“Parents who came here when they were kids are now bringing their own children out to the farm,” said John. “They’re creating new family memories.”
An up-close encounter with farm animals is among the activities children can enjoy at Washington Farms in Bogart.
To make your own fall memories, visit Washington Farms at 5691 Hog Mountain Road in Bogart. Admission is $15, which includes the corn maze and most attractions. Children 2 and under are free. There is no admission to visit the pumpkin patch.
During the fall season, the farm is open on weekends and some weekdays. Check their website or Facebook page for daily hours of operation, complete list of attractions and details about special weekend celebrations