In 1988, 1st Lt. Kirk Berggren married Julie, an Iowa farm girl. An Air Force career moved their family, which had grown to a daughter Taylor and a son, Jacob around the country. Julie was so homesick for the farm that every Fall their family visited pumpkin patches. They took lots of photos and dreamed of what they would do, if they had their own patch.
Dreams become reality!
In 2001 the family, along with new son Eli, finally settled down in Kansas City. Two years later, they realized their dream and started KC Pumpkin Patch in Gardner. The patch consisted of a small petting zoo, a tricycle track, a few bales of hay, a bin of corn, the barrel train still used today and not much else. Opening day turned out to be a nightmare, as there were literally more employees, (10), than guests. Staff was quickly reduced to family and a few friends. Julie cried and apologized for dreaming out loud! They persevered and grew KC Pumpkin Patch into a Kansas City favorite.
2013 brought growth to Gardner and a new move was in order. The Berggren’s had purchased a farm several years ago in anticipation but was handed setbacks. The Wellsville neighbors cried, “NIMBY”— not in my back yard! Another farm in Olathe was purchased and protested but the farm won approval December 19, 2013 and was established at 13875 Gardner Road, Olathe, KS 66061.
KC Pumpkin Patch & KC WINE CO
The new farm is 40 acres, lined by Century Old Hedge trees. The farm is divided into two parcels by a 4 acre pond that is the home to perch, blue gill, bass and winter geese. KC Pumpkin Patch is home on the south side of the farm. The northside of the farm hosts 7 acres of grapes and the new home of KC WINE CO, Johnson County’s newest winery! When asked which wine Kirk likes the best he replied, “They are like my children, I love them all.”
The Berggrens will continue to be good stewards of the earth and community, growing nontraditional crops (pumpkins and grapes) while enjoying agri-tourism in an urban county. Thank you for being our guests at KC Pumpkin Patch & KC Wine Co. We’ll leave the gate open for you!
Kirk, Julie, Taylor, Jacob and Elijah