KINGSTON, Tenn. (WATE) — Narramore Farms, located in Kingston, is one of many East Tennessee farms getting ready for the fall season, which is prime time for “Agri-tourism.” This concept treats farms, the products they produce, and the experiences they create, as attractions to visit and enjoy.
Agritourism has become part of how East Tennessee Farmers keep their farms up and running, especially in the harvest season when the autumn weather and scenery draw people outdoors.
“We do see several thousand people come out here to our farm which we’re super grateful for,” said the Owner of Narramore Farms, PJ Narramore.
To visitors, pumpkin patches and corn mazes are fun activities to enjoy in the fall, but for farmers like PJ, they’re a way to keep the family business afloat.
“For our fall season as a whole for our yearly income here for the farm it’s probably about 65%,” she explained.
Narramore and her husband started the farm back in 2015.
“We started with just a one-acre pumpkin patch and of course every year we’ve grown since,” Narramore said.
Now, they have around 30 acres they use for fall festivities. Narramore said they begin to prep for the season starting in the spring,
“We actually start preparing long before the fall season begins. It’s a year-long process in yearly preparation but we actually start planting our crops in June.”
Even with all that preparation, Narramore explains, their success still depends on the weather,
“We had a lot of rain at the end of June, first of July and then we’ve not had so much lately. So, the last few weeks have been severely dry here in our area. So, pumpkins have been okay, but this is not going to be our best year for pumpkins.”
She said the corn for the corn maze grew nicely this year however they did plant some sunflowers that didn’t do so well.
In the past few years, inflation has been tough to manage because it has been driving up prices for seeds and other needed items said Narramore. They also have to deal with the shipping issues that many other businesses have encountered.
However, they keep going because they love what they do and encourage others to enjoy their hard work with them.
“Make this be the year that you venture out, support your local farmer and enjoy what the farm has to offer, and make sweet memories that are worth repeating year after year,” Narramore said.
Narramore Farms Pumpkin Patch & Corn Maze will be open starting September 30 every weekend until the end of October. They also offer group field trip opportunities to schools and other groups during the week. For more on that, you can visit their Facebook page here.