Sunday, September 28, 2008

Harvest Festival/Price Gouging

Cider ApplesImage by scrumpyboy via FlickrYesterday the kids and I had an afternoon to ourselves since Phat Daddy was at a wedding.
I know we spend every day together, but despite that I find weekend days are always different than weekdays. We're not so scheduled and we tend to do different stuff than weekdays.
Doodle and I had talked about going to Ikea (to add to his train set) but we got talking about farms and he reminded me he wanted to go to an apple farm.
Sounded good to me.
We picked up a quick lunch and decided to drive to a local farm that we go to every so often. They have a big kids play area. I wasn't sure if they had apples, but it was a farm so we went.
I was shocked.
They had a "harvest festival" on, and they were now charging people to go into the play area.
It was ridiculous. All summer the area is free. But, for a limited time they added a puppet show and a second maze and were charging $8 admission per person over the age of 2.
This is in addition to the fact that they have a store to buy stuff at, extremely over-priced items to buy (like $32 pumpkins) and nowhere to pick your own anything.
I was a little miffed.
Of course Doodle was excited to be there. But, I explained the situation to him.
Simply put, I told him that it would cost us $16 to go in.
Even at the age of 4 he understood that was ridiculous. (or, in his words "dumb")
I mean, who upcharges that much for an attraction that is normally free?
I have no problem paying for a kids play area. But, if you want to make money, why not charge a nominal fee all year long (like $1 or $2 per kid) and deal with it?
I hate stuff like that.

So, we left.
And we found an apple farm. For the same amount of money we got a huge bag of apples and a huge jug of apple cider. Yum yum!
Instead of a kids play area they had apple trees that Doodle ran around in. And they had the sweetest dog who was happy to chase Doodle and play with him.
And, I think that Doodle got a sense what an apple farm is really about. I'm happy to support local farmers. In fact, I think it's a fantastic idea. Next weekend I'm going to take him to the apple farm we used to go to when I was growing up. I can't wait!!!
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Ginny said...

This is not the first time I've heard this story, it sounds like all the farms are doing it. Of course I think it's ridiculous that these places charge adults to go into the child's play area. Drives me crazy. Needless to say we will not be heading out to the farm anytime soon.

Multi-tasking Mommy said...

That is simply nuts!!!

citygirl said...

We ran across this in Vancouver this year. There's this suspended bridge in a big park that used to be free (a million years ago) and now it's $30 per person to enter the grounds. We left. I said if we were going to pay that kind of money in entrance fees, I wanted to see a big mouse with red shorts on.