Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Field Trip - The Apple Orchard

I thought you might like a look at the nearby apple orchard.

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The above photo was taken back in 2005. Dorothy M and her husband owned and operated the orchard for many, many years but when Dorothy's husband passed away she sold it to a young family who has carried on the tradition.

I was very surprised the first time I saw it because the trees are very small, very short. No ladders needed here.

The most famous part of the orchard experience was the ability to pick your own. There was a small gift shop and a bakery where they made those cider doughnuts fresh every day.

It's really grown since the last time I visited. Let's go to the Orchard Shop.

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Later in the day the Lion's Club will be grilling brats in that big tent.

Since the Kuiper's took over they've added the farm across the road, where in the fall there's a corn maze, pumpkins and everything else imaginable.

At the entrance to the Orchard Shop they've got some wonderful vintage tractors displayed. I'd love to give one of these a spin.

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Shopping carts are corraled in a small silo.

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The shop has greatly expanded and they've got all kinds of specialty food items. I seriously had to curb myself. But I did promise myself to go back and get some fresh ground peanut butter and some jelly.

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They've created a cool photo op area where you can pretend you're actually riding a tractor in the corn field. The kids were getting a kick out of this.

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Don't you love these huge fans on the ceiling?

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Somebody had fun designing this place.

The Kuiper's are a new breed that operate something classified as Agri-tourism. They're entrepreneurs and employ alot of local people. Great for the local economy. In the winter the business focuses on cut your own Christmas trees. It's a wonderful day in the country.

KUIPER'S FAMILY FARM

I tasted all the different varieties in the sample area and I bought 1/2 peck of Sun Gold apples for us to share. Hope you like them.

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This is very typical family excursion here in the American midwest, along with any number of Fall Festivals, Scarecrow Fests and Pumpkin Festivals. We love autumn!

How about your area? Is there a special fall outing that your family takes?

6 comments:

Mom Taxi Julie said...

There are some apple trees growing on my way to work and I was surprised at what they looked like too. I always thought apple trees were tall canopy type trees.

We have the local pumpkin patch, which is HUGE and right next to a very busy freeway. We usually only go with the school field trips though because it's super expensive to do anything there.

Lovella ♥ said...

Our area has an apple barn with many of the same things you have found there. . .I so enjoy supporting local markets. That silo cart trading post was great.

Our little apple trees are the same. I need to go out and check them again today. ..applesauce days are near.

QuiltNCards said...

You mentioned that the new owners of the orchard are carrying on the traditions of the former owners... I think that should be written into the buyers agreement in lots of cases. I think you should be able to make changes, but not to defile the property completely like you see on the TV. A perfectly nice house completely made over to be completely different inside, and outside in some cases. A lovely old Victorian mansion turned into an industrial looking whatever. If that's what they were looking for they should have bought one, or built it new. (And probably the next buyer will have to spend all kinds of money to refurbish the Victorian. Just one of my bigger pet peeves. Sorry you had to hear it.
Do love your blog! Today I got to go to the country for a crisp sunny day smelling the dusty corn and the unmistakiblly wonderful smell of ripe apples. Didn't cost me anything, and I didn't gain any weight doing it either. Thank you.
<3 U, Terri

Debbie said...

We're up here with you Suzanne. Just at a different orchard. They all look pretty similar, don't they? Some have better cider donuts. The apples have been very good this year. Enjoy!

MelissaD said...

We have a lovely area in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains (about an hour from here on the way up to Lake Tahoe) called Apple Hill. It is a lovely area with about 40 apple farms all open to the public. Most have little shops selling cider, pies, caramel apples, candy, etc. Some are also Christmas tree farms. It is lovely to drive up into the hills with all the leaves starting to change and stop and lots of little apple orchards - makes for a lovely fall day.
Thank you for the reminder to go out and enjoy!

Ang. said...

Our special fall trip is to go back home to Sycamore for the Pumpkin Festival. My sister and I always spend Saturday going to the craft shows. Suzanne! You should try to get into the one at the Methodist Church. Booth space is less expensive than at the high school. It is very well attended because it is right next to the high school.