When Clay Maxwell was serving as a combat pilot, pumpkins were the furthest thing from his mind. In fact, if any root vegetable occupied his thoughts on those missions, it would surely have been potatoes. Clay had plans of returning to the land after completing his service in the sky. Once he got back, he and his wife Linda would hatch their plan to sell some spuds by the side of the road.

But nature took them on a different course. As Clay and Linda set out to sell their potatoes, customers had their eyes on something else. They couldn’t help but take notice of the couple’s harvest decorations. Specifically, the giant orange pumpkins. So naturally the thought arose, “If there’s all this interest in pumpkins, why not give farming those a shot?” And so they did. And now 50 years later, Maxwell Pumpkin Farms is a family-owned Fall destination complete with homemade pies, sweet apple cider and—of course—pumpkins.

The two now share the farming duties with their son, daughter-in-law, and grandchildren. While pumpkins are the biggest thing they harvest, the roots of the farm are family. As Clay puts it, his children and grandchildren are the finest crop Maxwell Pumpkin Farms will ever produce.