52 acres of pumpkins
Along with pumpkins, Tim Vala plants Indian Corn, Gourds, and Chrysanthemums, all fall crops. Different sections of farmland are also outsourced to a different farmer to provide an adequate rotation schedule for pumpkins. This farmer plants corn and soybeans.
No – Strawberries were the first pick-your-own crop that Vala’s offered, back in 1983. For a few years, we were named “Vala’s Easy Pickins’ Farm,” but in 1986 we changed our focus to pumpkins and concentrated on developing an entertainment attraction.
Yes – In 2001, Vala’s planted a 1-acre orchard of 350 apple trees on the far south side of the farm. The Honeycrisp and Golden Delicious apple trees took three years to reach maturation, and last year produced their first significant crop. Long term plans for expansion include renovating the barns next to the orchard to create a bakery, fudge shop, and educational display. We will then open in early September to offer a pick-your-own apple experience for school groups.
Tim Vala chooses a diverse mixture of pumpkin varieties in order to offer a large selection of pumpkins with many different characteristics. He makes sure to plant very small pumpkins, very large pumpkins, and every size, color, shape, density, and stem length in between.
Some experts say that white pumpkins make the best-tasting Pumpkin Pie. Visit the Vala Sisters’ recipe section for more information on using fresh pumpkin in regular recipes and toasting your own pumpkin seeds.
Tim Vala plants the pumpkins in June in order to have them mature in late September.
The main trouble that home growers have with pumpkins is that they tend to take over a garden, or even a yard. They’re a vine crop that requires a lot of room to spread out. Also, don’t plant them too early or you’ll have ripe pumpkins in August.
General admission includes over 33 attractions and 3 live shows: The 5-acre Corn Maze, Hayrack Ride to the Pumpkin Field, Pumpkin Eating Dragon Show, Pigtuckey Derby Pig Racing Show, Pumpkin Cannon Show, Scarecrow Band, Howl-at-the-Moon Stage Shows (when scheduled), Pirate Maze, Lost Pumpkin Mine, Haunted Farmhouse, Spook Shed, Play Areas, Bunnyville, Graveyard Golf, Storybook Barn, Petting Corral, Peddle Tractors, Old Hwy 6 pedal carts, Pumpkinapolis 500, Family Pedal Carts, and "Real" Restrooms. For more information, look at the Interactive Map web page or take a Photo Gallery of Vala’s.
- Train Ride: $3.00 per person
- Pony Ride: $5.00 per child, 12 and younger
- The Giant Slinshot should be changed to “Apple Slingshots/Water Blasters” and the prices are $1.00 for 3 apples, $5.00 for 18 apples, $1.00 per water blaster bottle
- Paint Ball Haunted Shootout: $3.00, $5.00, and $7.50
- Harvest Barn Picture-Taking
See the groups pages and the Fall Festival Highlights page for more information.
Vala's offers a season pass. See more information on the Season Pass page. They are available at the Admissions Barn beginning Sept. 20th. If you would like to visit Vala’s more than once, this is a good deal.
Yes, but we do not encourage people to visit in the rain, except as a last resort. Indoor activities are very limited and often the Hayracks will be prevented from running by muddy conditions. Go to omaha.com for current weather information.
No - Vala’s remains open, despite weather conditions. Consult omaha.com for current weather information and choose your day carefully. The threat of rain may mean that Vala’s is less crowded, but it could also leave you wet and muddy if you decide to brave the elements. General Admission is non-refundable, but in the event of sudden rainstorms or extreme conditions, check with Admissions before you leave the farm to see if they will give you a rain ticket or discount voucher, allowing you to return on a future date.
Yes – When you reach the Admissions Barn window, tell them what you would like to buy. They will have you sign-up for the half-hour pass, allowing you to go get your desired purchase.
Visit the Groups webpage for more information.
You can submit a campfire request form online and / or call Vala’s at (402) 332-4200. Certain dates fill up fast, so make your reservation as soon as possible.
Yes, but remember that NO ALCOHOL is allowed at Vala’s Pumpkin Patch.
Vala’s has a very limited capacity for helping groups transport coolers and food to campfire sites. We in no way guarantee that we will be able to help. For liability reasons, we also restrict the amount of motor traffic allowed inside the park. If you think you may have a problem transporting food to a campfire site, consider choosing a Catering Package from the Vala’s menu. All catering options are delivered directly to your campfire site by Vala’s catering staff members.
Tim and Jan Vala belong to several national organizations that have conventions in the winter months. In March, the ground is prepared for planting and merchandise is ordered for the gift shops. Planning and marketing work is done in April and May, and Tim begins planting pumpkins in June. July, August and September are busy preparing for the new fall season.
No – All the animals are owned by Mark Celesky, whom you would probably recognize as the pig racing leader. If you would like to learn more about Mark and his business, visit www.boardinghousefarms.com or call 402-665-2437.
Each year we hire over 550 seasonal staff members. We currently employ 5 full-time workers year- round, and have about 10 part-time workers during the summer and fall. Visit our Employment Opportunities web page for more information.
Yes – Many people that work for Vala’s during October have full-time jobs. We do our best to work around everyone’s schedule. The time we always need the most help is weekends, especially Friday nights. See the Employment Opportunities web page.