Hunsader Farms Reopening: fun, animals, food, flowers and more

A baby donkey sits in a patch of grass and flowers under the sun. Hunsader Farms has been known for its petting zoo which includes a donkey named Baby Darla.



Ana Fernandez, News Editor

   Hunsader Farms just announced they are reopening for this season on Sept.3. They are a family farm in Bradenton that offers a variety of activities, from tomato picking to train rides. They open annually from September to early June.

   Hunsader Farms is located at 5500 CR 675, Bradenton, Fla. The Farms were established in 1967; their history begins with three brothers who moved from their Wisconsin dairy farm to start a vegetable farm in the south. 

   Some activities at the farms include petting animals at the petting zoo, a camp store, train rides, farm buggy rides and shopping around their antique store called “The Farmer’s Wife.”

   Over the years, they have added activities to expand their farm. The barn-style Farm Market was built in 1990, followed by the petting zoo in 1991. The following year they began their very first Pumpkin Festival. 

   This year, they will be hosting their 30th Annual Pumpkin Festival, where craft vendors can participate with homemade items.

   They have continued to add more family amenities such as a picnic area, a playground with slides, swings and a sandbox. Kids can also enjoy some ice cream while they visit.

   The market includes goods like fresh homemade jams, jellies, homemade honey and more.     The “Eat Shack” is only open on Saturdays and Sundays, offering breakfast, lunch and dinner items like burgers, hotdogs and pizza.

  They also offer a u-pick of grape and cherry tomatoes, wildflowers, sunflowers, black-eyed peas, purple hull peas, rhubarb, okra, strawberries, zipper peas and eggplant.

   To participate, people must bring in a bucket and sign in at the Produce Market before going out into the fields. 

   The u-pick fields close at 4 p.m. on Monday through Saturday and 3 p.m. on Sundays.

   The farms also offer a we-pick which includes broccoli, cabbage, cantaloupes, cucumbers, Florida sweet onions, pumpkins, watermelons and more.

   Since crops are seasonal, the u-pick and we-pick crops are only sold during their respective season. 

   Around Christmas time, they hold an event called “Country Christmas,” where families can go to see the barn decorated with Christmas lights and enjoy special activities like saying hello to Santa, campfires, Christmas music, snow tubing and Christmas movies on a big screen. They offer dinner and Christmas treats. Admissions are only $10 (cash only), and kids five and under are free.

   For families that enjoy spending time together outside, Hunsader Farms is an awesome place to visit because there is something for everyone to love.

  For more information about Hunsader Farms and when each crop is available, visit their website: