LA FERIA — A pumpkin patch on 75 acres of land might sound difficult to manage, but three sisters prove it can be done – and with style.
The Trevino sisters, Sami, Andi and Sarah, turned their family ranch, the T Ranch, into one of the most popular pumpkin patches in the Rio Grande Valley.
They claim it is the biggest in South Texas and from the looks of the property, it might just be.
The pumpkin patch is located at 25492 N FM 2556 and opens Thursday to Friday from 4 to 9 p.m., Saturday from 1 to 9 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 8 p.m.
This is the second year the ranch opens its doors to public to attend the pumpkin patch and get a fun fall experience.
The Trevinos said they feared the pumpkin patch would not be as successful because of the COVID-19 restrictions, but on the contrary, this year has surpassed their success from last year.
Families come from all over the Valley to take photos and enjoy multiple activities such as “hay ride truck”, a space to paint pumpkins and the petting zoo. There are goats, sheep, pigs and even a buffalo for children to see.
Food and drinks are also available for purchase, as well as board games in the picnic tables set up throughout the ranch.
Children are able to enjoy the playground or the corn pits in the front of the property.
“We have checkers, Jenga, Connect Four and a hay mountain the kids love to play with, and it is great for photos,” Sami Reyna, the oldest, said.
“We have grown a lot since last year, and it worked out great with COVID. And it has been a blessing because we have had a great turnout,” she said.
The ranch requires visitors to wear face masks and encourages social distancing. The area is big enough to keep a safe distance from others.
The sisters believe the pumpkin patch is so successful this year because families have limited entertainment activities at the moment.
“I guess there is not a whole lot to do, and this is fun. And you can social distance. Even when it is busy there is plenty of space out here and people just hang out and sit on the porch swing and relax,” Sami said.
The family is originally from Mercedes but has been residing in La Feria since 2001.
“We love growing up in a ranch. We have turkeys, quail and everything you can think of. My sisters and I grew up raising animals,” she said.
Even though the ranch is owned by their parents, the sisters have taken the reins of the management and creativity involved in the pumpkin patch.
The ranch is available for parties such as weddings or baby showers, but the thoughts of creating a pumpkin patch came to mind last year.
Reyna used to live in Houston and would visit pumpkin patches, which gave her family the idea of bringing back the experience of one in the Valley.
“We always wanted to do something out here, but we just didn’t know what and as it has evolved we thought the pumpkin patch would be the perfect thing to do,” she said.
Reyna mentioned at the beginning there were not as many people attending, which made her sisters and her nervous, but the surprise came with how successful it has been.
Sarah Trevino, the youngest of the trio, said the intention was to make people feel as if they were not in the RGV.
“We have had people from California and Arizona and we wanted them to feel like they were having a getaway here,” Sarah said.
“The first year was slow, and we didn’t have as much exposure through social media. But towards the end of the month we got a lot of people in. We listened to everyone’s feedback and now people have noticed,” she said.
There are more than 20 stations to take photos at the pumpkin patch. Sarah said every weekend something different is being added to the patch.
One of the most popular places to take photos, which has people waiting over 30 minutes in line, is a small house by a pond filled with pumpkins. The house was made to become a prop for the pumpkin patch and has been a favorite for families who want a fall photo.
The house has become so popular, the Trevinos believe it has helped them in their success.
“I think people started sharing more of their photos, and our page grew exponentially. We are almost at 10,000 likes on Facebook,” Sami said.
“The pumpkin house is a huge hit, and it is something you are not going to see in the Valley anywhere,” Sarah said.
Inspiration from bloggers, Pinterest and what other pumpkin patches have been doing around the U.S has helped these sisters create that welcoming and fun setup crowds have been enjoying.
“I hand painted the pink wall we have. I am an art minor, and Sami gave me the inspo and told me, ‘Hey, you need to bring something pink, influencer girly,’” Sarah said.
According to the sisters, a couple of thousands visit the pumpkin patch on a weekly basis.
The Trevinos have their day jobs and have not been able to open every day but are thinking of going bigger and better next year.
“We were never planning on doing this but we want to add more animals, more photo opps and improve everything,” Sarah said.