First it was time to do yoga with goats in the summer. Now, it’s time for carving pumpkins with goats in the fall.
Spring Haven Farm’s second annual Fall Farm Festival began, featuring pumpkin carving with goats, hayrides, games, a maze, baked goods, drinks and of course, plenty of animals to hang out with.
The festival is open every Saturday and Sunday in October from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., and costs $13.50 for admission, or $18.50 if you want a pumpkin to carve. Children under the age of three are free.
While guests carve their pumpkin of choice, baby goats play around, and on top of, the carving tables, eating the pumpkin innards and other treats.
“We really enjoy having people out here," said Andrew Crihfield, the owner of Spring Haven Farm. “The event is really special, and it’s really great to be able to give kids the opportunity to see all these animals close up without a fence in between them."
Although Spring Haven Farm has been around for 18 years, this is only their second year of hosting events for the public.
“Last year we decided to expand our opportunities on the farm, and we came up with goat yoga,” Crihfield said. “Then we started to figure out other things we might be able to do with our farm and the resources that we had, and we had goats, so last year we started Pumpkin Carving with Goats and it was really popular. So this year we expanded and brought it back."
Although the Fall Farm Festival caters to families, Heena Aswani, the farm’s social media manager, said it is enjoyable for all ages.
“The farm has a very good vibe, and the minute you get into the pumpkin patch and play with the baby goats, you just have a surge of happiness,” Aswani said. “In a way it’s therapeutic, you feel extremely relaxed when you come back."
While the baby goats are often the main attraction, Andrew’s son, Cullen Crihfield, said the farm has plenty of other critters to pet and interact with.
The farm is home to pigs, horses, turkeys, Annie the donkey and 200 free-range chickens.
“(The animals) are surprisingly individual — even the chickens can have their own ideas and personalities," Cullen Crihfield said.
In addition to Yoga with Baby Goats and the Fall Farm Festival, Spring Haven Farm hosts Movies with Baby Goats, various holiday-themed events with baby goats, date nights and themed breakfasts.The farm can also be rented for birthday parties and private events.
Whether it's goat therapy, a warm cup of apple cider or a hayride to remind people of their youth, Aswani encourages children and adults alike to visit the farm.
“It is one of the most underrated relaxation techniques that is available right at the edge of (Chapel Hill),” Aswani said. “We spend so much time in the offices or at home, it’s necessary for us to go out and enjoy some quality family time with animals amongst nature.”
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