Sometimes fresh air and open spaces are just what the family needs.
Spend the night in the country and collect new skills.
Here are five places your family will remember till the cows come home:
Leaping Lamb Farm. Alsea, OR.
Stow your gadgets and get back to nature on this charming 64-acre farm, in Oregon’s Coast Range. Craft a leisurely family breakfast in your cozy cabin including eggs your crew has collected. Find your way to the orchard to pick apples, pears or plums or wander off to forage for mushrooms. Lend a hand in the greenhouse and garden or learn about raising lamb and Heritage turkeys. Brush the horses, admire the peacock and make time for a hike or bike outing on neighboring trails.
Contact: 877-820-6132; www.leapinglambfarm.com
Madava Farms. Dover ,NY.
Visit the lush Hudson River Valley to learn how pure, certified organic Crown Maple syrup is produced on this 800-acre farm. After a 45-minute bark –to- barrel tour, you’ll have the opportunity to sample four varieties (from light to dark) as well as maple sugar. Visit the on-site café for other local taste treats. The local tourism website offers additional suggestions for farm fresh experiences, self drive itineraries and charming regional inns.
Icicle Inn Resort. Leavenworth, WA.
Sign up for artisan cheese making classes offered by Alpine Lakes Cheeses during which you’ll learn how this ancient food is crafted from the rich milk provided by the nearby farm’s small flock of 60 grass-fed sheep. The hands on classes are offered for beginners as well as more experienced cheese makers. The kids will also enjoy a year-round indoor/outdoor pool, miniature golf plus hiking and biking.
Contact: 800-961-0162; www.iciclevillage.com
Olde Fogie Farm B & B Marietta, PA.
When the bell rings, signaling the onset of morning chores, kids can help collect eggs, pet the pig and feed the rest of the critters. Hosts Tom and Biz Fogie get rave reviews for friendly hospitality and a fresh approach to sharing their farm life with families. For an experience beyond the fence, the Fogie’s will arrange for your clan to dine with a local Amish family. You can also visit the nearby toy train and clock and watch museums. Contact: (717) 426-3992; OldFogiesFarm.com.
Philo Apple Farm. Philo, CA.
Leave the electronics and expectations for room service behind when you check into a charming cottage tucked within this small, family-owned working apple orchard. The proprietors have honed their cooking, growing and hospitality skills during the last 20 years and delight in sharing their knowledge with guests. Stay and participate in meal preparation or just hang out amidst the fruit trees. Either way, you’ll learn about the making of fresh juice and jam and savor the sweetness of their well-preserved family recipes.