Over the years, a trip to Vala’s Pumpkin Patch has become a tradition for many families. As we head into our 38th year of operation, we are proud to welcome a second generation of parents who remember visiting Vala’s when they were children. As thousands of eager guests flood Vala’s Pumpkin Patch in the fall, it’s hard to believe it all started as a small business with a simple vision of creating a family-friendly, farm experience.
Vala’s Pumpkin Patch founder, owner, visionary and farmer, Tim Vala, grew up as a city boy in Omaha, Nebraska. After earning a B.A. Degree in Education from Nebraska Wesleyan University, and having trouble finding a full-time job in the school systems, he had the wild idea that he could become a farmer. Luckily, he came upon some land he could buy a little at a time, and then he bought a tractor that he didn’t know how to drive home, and he planted fruits and vegetables he didn’t know how to grow. But research, self-education and perseverance helped him succeed. Today, Vala’s Pumpkin Patch has grown into a 400-acre operation with nearly 55 acres of pumpkins planted every year.
As the business was growing, every member of the Vala family contributed, providing both special skills and cheap labor. Jan Vala, also a graduate of Nebraska Wesleyan University, worked for many years as a school psychologist in the Omaha Public Schools. At Vala’s, she took on the crucial business roles of marketer, merchandise manager, personnel manager and accountant. She eventually worked full time for Vala’s Pumpkin Patch, and was known to always remember each of the 1000+ employees’ names. Jan tragically passed away in 2021.
Tim and Jan’s three daughters, Kirsten, Kyla and Kelsey, were always happy to help however they could. Growing up, they spent most of their summers pricing merchandise and toiling on the farm, and they became loyal, hard-working employees every fall. Today, all three of the Vala daughters are co-owners of Vala’s Pumpkin Patch, as they take over many of the farm operations.
Every year we look forward to one whirl-wind month when guests visit Vala’s Pumpkin Patch to experience a spectacular Fall Festival. People love the caramel apples, the hayrack rides, and the Pigtucky Derby Pig Races. But we hope it’s the magical memories and treasured traditions that keep them coming back. We take great pride in our role as a wholesome family entertainment destination and we plan to continue growing and improving year after year.
January 11th, 1955 – September 3rd, 2021
Beloved Daughter, Sister, Wife, Mother, Grandmother and Friend
To create happiness and magical memories for families through fun, fall traditions.
At Vala’s, our Mission is to bring about opportunities for families to learn, laugh, and play together. We do this by emphasizing the beauty of fall, serving food that becomes a tradition, connecting the community to a working farm, and by providing activities and entertainment that families can enjoy with each other. We are a family business made possible by a dedicated team of staff members. In passionate pursuit of our Mission, we operate our business based on our Core Values. We aim to create experiences for all generations to share, to inspire happiness, to be a positive impact in the world, and to enrich lives. We do this because, in the end, there’s nothing more valuable than making magical memories together.
Act with Integrity, Pull the Wagon, Keep Growing, Go the Extra Mile