Coos County pumpkin patch not just for kids

Coos County pumpkin patch not just for kids
ALLEGANY, Ore.-- The Mahaffy Ranch near Allegany is now open for business, but it is giving a new twist to the traditional pumpkin patch.

For the second year in a row, the air-powered corn canon is making a return.

"We wanted to have something that would also be enjoyable for adults who came out to visit us," said Ryan Mahaffy, who operates the pumpkin patch with his wife Shawna.

The Mahaffy family has set up two targets for visitors to shoot corn at. One is a UO Ducks signs while the other is an OSU Beavers banner.

Ryan and Shawna, OSU alumi, joke with visitors that if they hit the OSU sign they will be put to work for hitting the wrong target.

The cannon is air-powered and can shoot the distance of three football fields.

Visitors can shoot the corn canon for one dollar for two shots.

The couple has already hosted a number of elementary school children on the ranch since opening in late September. Each child who visits on a school field trip is able to take a pumpkin home.

Shawna said offering something different from everyday work and play is what gives the ranch the ability to plant more pumpkins next year.

"Everyone loves to be able to come and visit, and just get out of the fog of the city," Shawna said. "So we like to be able to share it, and I think its wonderful seeing all the kids running around having a great time."

Unlike grocery stores that sell pumpkins in a nice patch near the entrance, the Mahaffy Ranch Pumpkin Patch allows its pumpkins to grow on the vine until someone wants to purchase them.

Ryan said so far, the ranch has not run out of pumpkins.

"We have about 7 acres of pumpkins, and just going off prior years, its been just about right. So if we need more we'll plant more ground next year I guess," Ryan said.

The Mahaffys are selling pumpkins for 28 cents per pound this year. They say drought conditions around the country have not impacted them whatsoever, and that has allowed them to keep prices low.

The ranch is able to irrigate its property with use of water from the Coos River.

The ranch will be open until four days before Halloween.