A Northwest Indiana Life in the Spotlight: Josh Sickinger

A Northwest Indiana Life in the Spotlight: Josh Sickinger

It’s amazing how life can work in mysterious ways. That’s what Josh Sickinger, managing member at Harvest Tyme Family Farm, believes regarding where he is today. 

Growing up in Lowell, Sickinger’s family has been in the community for a long time. After high school, he double majored in accounting and finance at Valparaiso University.

His first job after graduation was as a certified public accountant (CPA). He later transitioned to being the controller at a trucking company for 11 years. It was then that Sickinger also started up Harvest Tyme.

“The year that I graduated college, I bought myself an old tractor and planted several acres of pumpkins,” Sickinger said. “It started out as a side venture for me, but it always was a labor of love. We have a great team, and we’ve continued to build it up over time.”

Sickinger believes that the pandemic was a main contributor that helped propel Harvest Tyme to where it is today.

“It was a tough time period where nobody knew what was going on,” Sickinger said. “We were just positioned in the right place being that we are a very large outside area. Many people’s holiday traditions were being ruined by the pandemic, but we saw this as an opportunity to create a drive-thru light display. It was one of our more successful ideas and helped us spark new ones moving forward.”

Harvest Tyme continued to create new activities for the visitors, such as the pumpkin glow trail lights during the night and a dinosaur event tied to the farm. 

The big event for this summer is called Unicorn Tyme. All across the farm, visitors will be able to see more than 20 animatronic unicorns and experience what Sickinger labeled as a unicorn petting zoo.

Strategy development has always been at the forefront for Sickinger when it comes to Harvest Tyme. One area that he’s looking to expand upon moving forward is the amusement rides.

“Right now, we have almost a dozen of them,” Sickinger said. “We’re always trying to find ways to differentiate ourselves from the pack as the business keeps growing.”

Providing an easy means of access to these unique events at the farm is one of the biggest motivators for Sickinger and Harvest Tyme.

“There might be some activities we have that people could find in Chicago,” Sickinger said. “A large portion of our guests are in the Northwest Indiana area, and we want to serve as a place that people can come to for great attractions without having to drive through a busy city or paying too much.”

Sickinger has a plethora of new events that he’s looking to produce in the future that will provide visitors with a special experience. One of his biggest goals is to expand the infrastructure of the farm in the next few years to provide renovations to areas such as the buildings, gift shop, and bakery.

Since running the farm, Sickinger has been on both sides for the highs and the lows. However, the one constant has been the excitement in this journey along the way. He wouldn’t be in this position without the support of his family and the community.

For additional information on Harvest Tyme Family Farm, you can check out the website.