Dec 4, 2014

A tribute to Hee Haw Valley in Vista California

A couple decades ago.. before practically every kid had access to the internet and home video game systems, life was a lot different.  It was a lot more simpler, and we as kids relished a broad array of pastimes.  I myself used to love fishing, flying kites, and I practically lived on my bicycle whenever the weather was good.

The activities folks used to participate in with their kids were quite a bit simpler as well.  My family used to love going to a petting farm and attraction located in Vista California back in the 70s called 'Hee Haw Valley'.  My brother remembered more about it than I did, as I was only around 5 years old at the time, but I do remember bits and pieces about our visits that have stuck with me throughout my entire life.

My big brother and I getting ready to set off
on the adventure that was.. The Hee HawValley Pacific!

I have written briefly about Hee Haw Valley before, and couldn't believe the history lesson I've since received, from past patrons, workers, friends, and family of the owner Bob Tupa.  All have fond memories of the farm, and feel a deep sense of nostalgia whenever they talk about it.

The attraction opened to the public in 1957 as a burro farm, and closed in 1974 as something altogether different.  Over the years it transformed into a petting zoo, and later added a miniature railroad.  In 1969 the price of admission cost a quarter, and bags of feed to give to the animals were a nickel a bag. 

Many kids (like me) loved wearing Western duds to Hee Haw Valley.  I believe my brother wore his Indian headdress a couple of times.  

The farm featured a train ride, burro rides, a petting farm featuring goats, chicken, geese, turkeys, a talking blackbird named Jim Crow, a caged racoon, and many more animals.  It seems like folks from all around California flocked to Hee Haw Valley on the weekends so their kids could experience a piece of country life in a fun setting.

And now for the main reason I wrote this post.  I'm happy to announce that a very nice fellow I met through this site named Leon, has put together a nice tribute site to Hee Haw Valley.  His web-site features history, pictures, magazine articles, and most importantly.. great memories.

If you remember Hee Haw Valley, make sure to visit his site to reminisce.  If you have any information or stories of your own to share, Leon would love to hear them so he can further add to his treasure trove of rich Hee Haw Valley history.   If this is the first time you've ever heard of Hee Haw Valley, drop by to get a sense of the kind of wholesome entertainment us California kids enjoyed back in the good old days!

(Where the Donkeys don't wear pants)


  1. Thank you for posting this I was telling my wife about a place that I used to call the Hee Haw farm as we were on our way to Oceanside I lived there as a kid 1969 1970 ish she found your article

  2. Thank you for posting this article recently wife and I were on vacation driving to Oceanside and I was telling her about a place I used to go when I was a kid and I called it the Hee Haw Farm that is when she went on the internet and found your article I used to live in Oceanside around 1968 to 1971 ish

  3. I believe my mom knew or worked with Bob at Camp Pendleton. We went there in the about 1959-1961. I have photos of my brother, sister, and myself on the burros. I remember goats there as well.


What say you?