Pumpkins, sure, but county farm harvests family fun

SNOHOMISH — Tanya Slonecker’s daughters couldn’t care less about pumpkins.

Thankfully, there was plenty else for them.

The Mill Creek woman brought her two daughters and their neighborhood friends to Stocker Farms to have a little seasonal fun.

Her younger daughter Jillian, 7, shoveled kernels from a corn sandbox into her shirt and held them there to make a “corn belly.”

Eleven-year-old Piper raced through the corn maze with friends, trying to beat their 17-minute record.

“There’s just something for everyone,” Tanya Slonecker said during their visit last week.

The Snohomish farm has been in Keith Stocker’s family for four generations, but it wasn’t always open to tourists.

“If you would have asked me, years ago, if this farm would thrive off of ‘agritainment,’ I wouldn’t have believed it,” Stocker said.

“It’s a really fun way to make a living … seeing the kids have fun, like ‘corn belly’ over here.”

Pumpkin patches are open for the season, but most have to offer more than pumpkin-picking to draw in crowds.

Stocker Farms and five others that make up the Snohomish Festival of Pumpkins have activities for all ages. Most have corn mazes and farm animals. Stocker Farms has split personalities.

During the day, it’s open for families with younger kids to pick pumpkins, ride a tractor-pulled train or jump on an inflatable “jumping pillow.”

“It’s really funny to watch adults jump,” Stocker said. “At first, they’re not so sure, but after a while, they’re absolutely giddy. It’s a hoot.”

At night, it becomes Stalker Farms.

That’s when older kids can load up on black light paintballs and shoot at zombies during the farm’s Hunt for Zombie Paintball Ride.

Participants ride on a trailer through dark cornfields and shoot at actors with special protective gear — which means they can take headshots. Everyone understands that the only way to kill a zombie is to get ‘em in the head.

“They take about 10,000 shots a night,” Stocker said. “And they’re just loving it.”

The Snohomish Festival of Pumpkins offers season passes, on sale now, that include multiple admission to corn mazes, pumpkin patches and other activities through Oct. 26.

Passes are $100 for a family of four per farm, available at www.festivalofpumpkins.org.

Ashley Stewart: 425-339-3037; astewart@heraldnet.com.

More in Local News

Shock from WSU suicide ripples through Snohomish County

Roughly 1 in 10 seniors, sophomores and 8th-graders said they had attempted to take their own lives.

$1,000 reward for info on who killed an eagle near Snohomish

After being shot, the raptor was treated at the Sarvey Wildlife Center but died overnight.

Woman confronts man leaving house with stolen item

“He swung at her with a crowbar, missing her.”

Police seek suspect in Wells Fargo bank robbery

He was described as white, in his 30s, heavyset, with blonde hair and a maroon sweatshirt.

Possible bobcat sighting keeps Snohomish students inside

The creature was spotted on the campus of Valley View Middle School around noon.

Stabbing in Everett follows dispute between brothers-in-law

The victim, 54, was hospitalized. The suspect, 29, had not been apprehended Thursday.

New leaders coming to county, state political parties

Hillary Moralez of Bothell takes over as chair for the Snohomish County Democratic Party.

Mom and brother turn in suspect in Stanwood robberies

The man is suspected of robbing the same gas station twice, and apologizing to the clerk afterward.

Derrick “Wiz” Crawford, 22, is a suspect in the homicide of his roommate. (Edmonds Police Department)
Roommate suspected in Edmonds killing found hiding in closet

Police had been searching for him for 10 days before locating him at a house in Everett.

Most Read