These Eckert Patches Are Killing The Midwestern Pumpkin Experience
Eckert’s Country Store and Farms is a centuries-old American national treasure. First established as a basic roadside farm and stand, the house-name business is now the largest family-owned U-pick orchard in the United States, operating agricultural, entertainment and retail outlets in Belleville, Grafton and Millstadt in southwestern Illinois, as well as an orchard in Versailles, Kentucky.
For more than a century, Eckert’s has served as a local source for a wide range of agricultural products, as well as real-farm experiences such as pick-your-own strawberries, peaches, blackberries, apples, pumpkins and berries. Christmas trees during certain growing seasons. .
In recent years, however, Eckert’s has evolved, offering souvenirs that go beyond pick-your-own products. Today, visitors can enjoy new facets of the brand: Eckert’s Country Store & Garden Center, Eckert’s Country Restaurant and an annual slate of exciting events for the whole family.
Outside of farm produce, Eckert also offers a variety of specialty foods, meat, wine and cheese selections, as well as cooking and wine classes for adults and special activities for children.
Sure, Eckert’s is a year-round celebration of farming magic, but with fall just around the corner and Halloween in sight, there’s a very special experience everyone is talking about: the Eckert’s Pumpkin Picking Extravaganza – one of the best pumpkins. USA Experiences Every year, every pumpkin patch at Eckert Farm is ready for the picking, providing a family activity suitable for both fall and the spookiest season of all.
Not sure which Eckert farm to visit in September and October? No worries, this handy guide spills the pumpkin juice and provides insight into each of Eckert’s farms and orchards. However, first, it’s time to take a closer look at Eckert’s long family history.
The history of Eckert’s farm
The Eckert family history is long and fruitful – figuratively and literally. Eckert Orchards first took root in 1837 after Johann Peter Eckert immigrated to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania from Dietzenbach, Hesse Darmstadt, Germany.
He began farming in his new home, followed by his son Michael, who continued his father’s legacy and love for the land and settled on a farm the Eckert family calls Drum Hill – a setting located near Fayetteville, Illinois, and 35 miles southeast of St. . Louis. In 1862, Michael planted fruit trees on the farm, after which his son, Henry, followed in his father’s footsteps and planted fruit trees on his Turkey Hill Farm in Belleville, Illinois in 1890.
Today it is Henry’s old farm which is now the main center of the Eckert family business, where their country restaurant and country store operate all year round, and their largest orchard produces all kinds of fresh fruits and vegetables, such as peaches, apples, blackberries, strawberries and many more. Today, the sixth and seventh generations of the Eckert family manage the day-to-day business operations of this much-loved American farm that sits firmly in the heart of the nation.
Additionally, the Eckert family owns farms, orchards, and general stores in Millstadt and Grafton, Illinois, as well as a successful orchard in Versailles, Kentucky. The charming and rustic Grafton Farm sits atop a cliff on the Mississippi River just outside of Alton, Illinois, while the Millstadt Fun Farm is the perfect hive of family activities and events for a day or evening full of outdoor entertainment.
Naturally, one of their most popular experiences across all of their farms is picking fruits and vegetables, and each growing season brings new produce to be picked straight from the trees. Picking your own fruit is, of course, fun and rewarding, but it’s also a wonderful educational time for adults and children alike – a reminder of how and where America’s food supply is grown and nurtured.
While experiences, events and seasonal products change throughout the year, right now Eckert’s Farm pumpkin season is approaching – and what better way to celebrate fall and Halloween than the horizon than picking pumpkin patch in spooky season?
Each year, Eckert’s multiple farms have prime plump pumpkins for photos and picking, offering visitors in the fall the chance to indulge in this annual tradition in true ghostly spirit. With several farms to choose from, here’s a quick rundown of each to help aspiring pumpkin pickers select their favorite Eckert location and have fun on the farm in the fall.
Belleville Farm of Eckert, Illinois
- Address of Eckert’s Belleville: Eckert’s Pick Your Own Belleville Farm, 951 S Green Mt Rd, Belleville, IL 62220, USA
Year-round family fun awaits you at Eckert’s Belleville Farm. From picking its own fruits and vegetables to tasting the delicious fresh treats prepared on site, this farm exudes kindness and indulgence for all ages.
While the picking of peaches, blackberries, strawberries, apples, vegetables and sunflowers, and seasonal Christmas trees attract farm goers every month of the year, in the fall it’s are those that are large, round and bright orange. Pumpkins from the farm are ripe and ready from late September to October, when pretty pumpkins from the garden are displayed to decorate the grounds in the fall.
Visitors can pick their own pumpkins to carve, eat, bake or display, and even sample the farm’s delicious pie pumpkins for sale. Plus, the farm’s famous fried chicken is a family favorite.
The Belleville Farm also has two new multi-million dollar additions for visitors; Mr. E’s Donut & Custard Shop serves up a feast for the senses in the form of ice creams and sundaes made with farm-fresh, seasonal produce, while The Cider Shed offers a menu of appetizers, salads and appetizers. accompaniments as well as five of its own ciders. on draft.
There’s also a delicatessen for tasty bites and a Country Store to buy farm-fresh produce, meats, pastries and other Eckert delicacies, while the Garden Center is bursting with fresh flowers for every season. .
Grafton Farm of Eckert, Illinois
- Address of Grafton d’Eckert: Eckert’s Grafton Farm, 20995 Eckert Orchard Rd, Grafton, IL 62037, USA
Grafton’s peaceful farmland rests on the scenic cliffs of the Mississippi River, providing an idyllic and tranquil getaway amidst a peaceful rural landscape. This is where Eckert’s Grafton Farm is located, a scenic and special place on the Illinois state map.
Peaches, apples and blackberries are perfect for picking fresh – but it’s in the fall that guests are invited to come to the farm and create special memories and new traditions for the last generations. Eckert’s Grafton Farm offers pumpkin picking from late September through October, while showcasing decadent pumpkins and pumpkin pies the authentic Eckert way. In addition, the farm stand is open on weekends in September and October.
Millstadt Farm of Eckert, Illinois
- Address of the Millstadt farm in Eckert: Eckert’s Millstadt Fun Farm, 2719 Eckert Orchard Ln, Millstadt, IL 62260, USA
Another fantastic Illinois farm experience awaits everyone, young and old, at Eckert’s Millstadt Farm. For anyone who fancies picking their own apples and pumpkins, sliding down a giant underground slide, or getting involved in the many events that take place throughout the year, this is the one and only place to go – and all takes place in September and October.
From September to October, the Eckert Millstadt farm offers the apple festival, cute pig races, a puzzle corn maze, bonfires, pony and camel rides, adorable encounters with parakeets, a wonderful children’s farm and, for the spooky season, a haunted wagon rides with all things pumpkin. Snap photos with the adventurous display pumpkins, savor tantalizing fall treats for the taste buds, and get a load of the jack-o-lobber – the farm’s giant pumpkin cannon!
Versailles orchard in Eckert, Kentucky
- Address of the orchard of Versailles d’Eckert: Eckert’s Orchard, 1396 Pinckard Pike, Versailles, KY 40383, USA
Whether it’s picking apples, blackberries, peaches, strawberries, vegetables and more, Eckert’s in Kentucky is another farm brother that offers fantastic beautiful and entertaining outdoor entertainment for all ages. In season, pumpkins are all the rage, becoming perfect for picking from September through October.
Upon arrival at the facility, visitors can enjoy a wagon ride to the farm before being dropped off at the apple orchard where the farm’s vibrant, bloated pumpkin patch grows. After those stuffed pumpkins are picked and the family fall photos are done, the bakery and concessions invite hungry customers in need of fresh food. Plus, the farm has a fun playground for little guests, while seasonal bonfires and a corn maze add an extra layer of excitement for those who visit at the right time.