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How to Have the Best Summer Ever with Kids in D.C.

Summer break will be here before we know it! The last day of school for most kids in the D.C. area is within the next couple of weeks. Are you ready?! This will be my first summer with 2 kids + a baby, so it will be challenging to say the least. I’m pretty sure I will be completely exhausted by the end but I definitely want to make it lots of fun. After all, we only get 18 summers with our kids before they head off to college.

I have found that a mix of structured camp weeks and unscheduled free weeks works best for us. My girls really enjoy camp and I need that time to recharge and get work done, run errands, exercise, etc. But I also like to have a few weeks where we don’t have any classes or camps so that we can go on adventures and take advantage of the many fun outdoor kid-friendly things there are to do in the DC area. Also, just having time to play at home and in our backyard is important too since we are always in go, go, go mode during the school year.

My girls and I like to come up with a list of our “must-do’s” before summer break begins. The summers seem to fly by so having a list and a plan of what we want to do most will help us accomplish our summer bucket list. We are ready for the best summer yet!

1. Go to a farm to pick fresh fruit.

The pick-your-own season starts in May with strawberries and continues throughout the summer with cherries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and peaches. Click here to read our article on Mommy Nearest with a list of our favorite farms to visit in Maryland and Virginia.

all3strawberrypicking

2. Cool off at a splash park.

Sometimes it’s fun to change it up and play at a splash park instead of the pool on a hot summer day. We have so many fun splash pads in the area. Here are a few of our favorites: South Germantown splash park, Chevy Chase sprayground, Palisades splash park, Georgetown Waterfront Park, and The Yards Park.

clarasplashpark

3. Take a trip to the beach.

We usually go to a couple different beaches over the summer. Chesapeake Beach, MD is one that we enjoy and only an hours drive from DC so it makes for the perfect day trip. Read more about it in our article with Mommy Nearest here. My girls love it mostly because you can hunt for fossilized shark teeth. The other beach we visit each summer is Rehoboth Beach, DE and a couple of must-do’s for my girls at this beach are Funland and Crab Claw Adventures.

rehobothbeach

4. Play in our own yard.

Swimming in the pool, water balloons, slip n’ slide, sprinkler fun, sidewalk chalk, ice block treasure hunts, giant bubbles, outdoor art, picnics, and lemonade stands are some of the fun things we plan to do right in our own yard. Thanks to DC Mosquito Squad we are enjoying our yard free of mosquitoes and gnats!

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We absolutely love to spend time outside and don’t want the bugs to drive us back inside the house, so we’ve already started our annual mosquito & gnat treatments that repel and kill the pesky bugs to help us enjoy our yard to the fullest throughout the summer. About every three weeks a DC Mosquito Squad technician comes out to apply a long lasting barrier spray to our front and back yard that repels and kills mosquitoes and gnats for about 21 days. I didn’t even know there was a treatment for gnats until this year when I was browsing the DC Mosquito Squad website. I was thrilled to find this out as there is nothing more annoying than a swarm of gnats around your face and it’s even worse when they get in your eyes or mouth….noooooo thanks! The nice thing about the gnat treatment is it’s just an add-on to the mosquito package so they can spray for both at the same time. You can read more about it here.

Maepainting

Are you wondering if the barrier treatments really work? I was skeptical at first too but then I realized it does work extremely well! I’ve been getting our yard sprayed for 7 years now….ever since my oldest was born. I remember taking Clara outside to swing as a baby and having to shoo away mosquitoes on her face. That’s when I decided I needed to do something about the mosquito problem and it has been absolutely worth it!

Mosquito Squad logoI’ve been really happy with our services from DC Mosquito Squad.

sidewalkchalk

5. Enjoy outdoor children’s concerts and theater performances.

Every Thursday morning in July, Strathmore offers their Backyard Theater for Kids program. The family-friendly performances are lots of fun, plus the kids enjoy the free snow cones! We also love the Children’s-Theatre-In-The-Woods performances at Wolftrap.

6. Ride the carousel at Glen Echo.

The carousel at Glen Echo is our absolute favorite in the DC area. There are several that you can read about in our article here but we think the Dentzel carousel in Glen Echo is extra special! Plus there are so many other things to do while you are at the Glen Echo park: see a puppet show at The Puppet Co., catch a show at Adventure Theatre, visit the aquarium, and play on the playground.

glenecho

7. Visit the Zoo.

One of the many great free things in Washington, D.C.! When we visit in the summer, I make sure we get to the zoo early in the morning (by 9am) before the heat + crowds arrive to enjoy it the most!

8. Go to a summer fair, carnival, and theme park.

My girls live for the Montgomery County Fair! They get so excited for the animals, rides, and games. We also like going to the Frying Pan Farm Park 4H Fair and Carnival every summer. It’s a small carnival but easy to manage with small children. We also have plans to visit Dutch Wonderland for the second time this summer. We had such a great experience there last year. Click here to read more about it + get a discount code for tickets!

funslide

Of course along with these things we will be making the rounds at our favorite ice cream shops, parks, and playgrounds too! What do you have planned this summer? Let me know if there’s anything else we can’t miss out on!

Disclosure: This post was written in partnership with D.C. Mosquito Squad who is providing standard barrier treatment for our yard this summer.



Strawberry Picking at Wegmeyer Farms Oatlands

Oatlands Historic House & Gardens
20850 Oatlands Plantation Lane
Leesburg, VA 20175
www.wegmeyerfarms.com
 

After 15 consecutive days of rain in DC, we just couldn’t wait any longer to get out into the strawberry fields. We knew there would be a pretty good chance we’d get rained on so we just put on our boots and jackets and decided to embrace the mud!

Once we arrived at Historic Oatlands, we found out that they were not offering the usual wagon rides to the strawberry fields due to the muddy roads. So we followed the strawberry signs and took the kids on a walk. They were full of energy, so this ended up being a good thing! Even though it is a fairly long walk to the fields the kids were entertained by the sights along the way. They stopped to look at the cows grazing in the field and look for frogs in the lily pond.

Cows (1 of 1)

We had the entire field to ourselves on this rainy Friday morning, so the kids got to choose their rows and were excited to start picking right away. Since there has been a lack of sunshine the past two weeks, the ripe berries were mixed in with lots of unripe berries. We explained to the little ones that they could only pick the bright red strawberries and thankfully they (mostly) obliged.

IMG_0675Maepicking (1 of 1)Maeperfectberry (1 of 1)

Wegmeyers berries are simply the best; so juicy and sweet! We ended up eating almost half a bucket on our walk back to the car.  You can see the passion that Wegmeyer Farms has for their strawberries just by looking at their fields. They grow their berries on raised plastic beds, which keeps the berries clean, dirt-free and makes for easy picking. We completed our strawberry picking outing with a picnic! And then headed home to make strawberry shortcake!

Bonus: Wegmeyer Farms is offering all Capitol Momma readers 25% off on weekdays – just mention Capitol Momma at the register!

 

Good to Know:

•Open 9am-6:00 daily
•Hayride tickets: adults $5, children 16 and under are free
•Strawberries are $3.99 per pound.
•Don’t dress your children in their nicest clothes. There’s a good chance they are going home with strawberry stains. Totally worth it though!
•Containers are provided or you can bring your own. Just ask them to weigh your container first if you bring your own.
•The Carriage House has a restroom.
•No food is sold here but you are welcome to bring a picnic.

 

 



Strawberry Picking at Wegmeyer Farms 2016

 

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Spring is here in Northern Virginia, and there is no better way to celebrate than picking red, juicy strawberries straight off the vine at Wegmeyer Farms. Berry picking is a fun, healthy outside activity for the kids. It is definitely one of my favorite things to do with my girls during the spring and summer months.

Wegmeyer’s fields are set to open on May 7! They have graciously offered all of you a 25% discount on the strawberries you pick during weekdays (Monday-Friday). There is no charge to visit, you only pay for what you pick – $3.99 per pound.  Just mention Capitol Momma at the register to get the discount.

Wegmery Farms has three u-pick locations. We visited the Oatlands location last year. You can read more about that location in this blog post.

Hamilton, VA boutique farm setting – Tucked away on back roads of Lincoln (between Purcellville and Leesburg) at a historic homestead, this farm provides the most scenic views of rolling farmlands.  They offer picnic tables for you to bring your own lunch and refreshments available for sale. After you pick berries, you can stick around with the kids and let them play on the John Deere tractor slide and playground.

38299 Hughesville Road, Hamilton, VA

Historic Oatlands – The strawberry patch and era-themed attire at this historic mansion will whisk you back to the 1800’s.  For those who do not want to walk from the parking lot to the field, you may hop on the wagon for $5 for adults and children under 16 are free.While visiting the strawberry patch is free, you can choose to make a day of it by purchasing tour passes for the historical garden and/or mansion in addition to strawberry picking.

20850 Oatlands Plantation Ln, Leesburg, VA

Gilbert’s Corner – strawberry picking in its most natural state. This no-fuss location is perfect for a simple outing. Parking is available right at the site.

Intersection of Route 15 and Route 50 in Aldie, VA.

Packed with nutrients and antioxidants, strawberries are known as one of the most popular you-pick fruits in the area. Customers are encouraged to call the strawberry field hotline at (540) 751-1782 or visit www.wegmeyerfarms.com to check field conditions. Happy berry picking, friends!



Strawberry Picking at Wegmeyer Farms – Oatlands Historic Mansion and Gardens

Oatlands Historic Mansion and Gardens
20850 Oatlands Plantation Ln
Leesburg, VA 20175
www.wegmeyerfarms.com

 

My girls absolutely love picking berries in the spring and summer months. They were extremely excited for our first picking adventure. I really enjoy taking them to farms so they can learn where our food comes from and also have some good ol’ fashioned fun!  Oatlands seemed like the perfect place to go pick, since we would also get to explore the beautiful mansion grounds I had heard so much about.

After arriving, we went into the Carriage House to purchase tickets for the hayride out to the strawberry fields. It’s about a 5 minute scenic ride out to the fields. My girls especially loved this part.

Carriagehouse

Once we arrived at the strawberry fields, we were greeted by friendly staff in 1800s era-themed costumes and they directed us to our row in the patch.

strawberry field

My girls had so much fun picking the berries and would squeal when they found an especially large one. The strawberries were so plentiful, we didn’t have to move very far down our row. Clara and Mae were just a little disappointed when we had completely filled our baskets and had no more room to pick any more!

Wegmeyersgirlspicking

Wegmeyers berries are so sweet, juicy, and perfect. I can’t even really describe how good they are!

Wegmeyersstrawberries

We headed to the strawberry hut to pay for our berries and the girls were excited to get stickers and official strawberry picker coloring books. The wagon took us back to the Carriage House and from there we walked over to the historic mansion to explore the four acres of gardens.

OatlandsmansionThe peonies and irises were in full bloom!

claragardensoatlandsirisesIMG_7755

I highly recommend berry picking at Wegmeyers Farms Oatlands location. It was such a unique experience with the history and beauty of the property. There are about 3 weeks left in the season, so hurry and go visit them! For more information on the other two picking locations, check my blog post here. And don’t forget that if you pick on a Thursday (Family Picking Day) this season, mention Capitol Momma and receive 25% off!

Good to Know:

•Open 9am-5:30 daily
•Hayride tickets: adults $5, children 16 and under are free
•Strawberries are $3.99 per pound.
•Thursdays throughout the season are Family Days. Receive a 25% discount by simply mentioning Capitol Momma.
•Don’t dress your children in their nicest clothes. There’s a good chance they are going home with strawberry stains. Totally worth it though!
•Containers are provided or you can bring your own. Just ask them to weigh your container first if you bring your own.
•The Carriage House has a restroom.
•No food is sold here but you are welcome to bring a picnic.



Burnside Farms

Burnside Farms
2617 Longmill Road
Haymarket, Virginia
www.burnsidefarms.com
 

I was online searching for spring festivals in the DC area a couple months ago when I came upon Burnside Farms. After seeing just one photo of the tulip fields, I decided this was a place that we needed to get to this year one way or another. I have a love for flowers and nature and so do my girls. They are happier and behave better when we spend time outside around pretty things!

We arrived at the farm shortly after opening last Sunday morning. We paid the entrance fee and picked up baskets for our tulips. We walked over to the fields and first stopped to try on the wooden clogs. My girls got a kick out of trying these on!

BurnsideMaeshoesOf course when they saw the giant pair of clogs they had to take turns standing in them!

BurnsideMaegiantshoesThen we headed out to find a good picking spot in the fields. There were only a handful of people there early in the morning, so we had plenty of picking space to ourselves. There are advantages to having early rising toddlers!

The view is a feast for the eyes! Absolutely gorgeous!

Processed with VSCOcam with s3 preset

BFtulipscloseupThe girls were really enjoying picking and would have kept going if I let them. But at $1 per stem, I had to cut them off eventually!

BurnsideClaraWe had a wonderful first time at Burnside Farms and definitely plan on going back next year!

Burnsidesnuggles

burnside

Good to Know:

•Admission is $4 for a day pass, children under 12 months are free
•$1 per tulip, $.50 per daffodil.
•45 minute drive from DC.
•Baskets are provided.
•You pay for what you pick. So if you have toddlers picking and they break the tulips, you are still paying for those!
•They do accept credit cards.
•Don’t wear nice shoes because the fields can be muddy.
•Port-a-potties on site.



Strawberry Picking at Wegmeyer Farms 2015

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Spring has finally arrived in Northern Virginia, and there is no better way to celebrate than picking red, juicy strawberries straight off the vine at Wegmeyer Farms. Berry picking is a fun, healthy outside activity for the kids, particularly after this long winter.  The fields should be ready for picking by Memorial Day.

Starting the week of May 25, Thursday is Family Picking Day, and Wegmeyer Farms would like to extend a 25% discount for Capitol Momma readers when they come and pick on any Thursday this season at one of their three locations.  There is no charge to visit, you only pay for what you pick – $3.99 per pound. Just mention the Capitol Momma discount to the cashier when checking out.

This year, Wegmeyer Farms has three u-pick locations:

  • Hamilton, VA boutique farm setting – Tucked away on back roads of Lincoln (between Purcellville and Leesburg) at a historic homestead, our farm provides the most scenic views of rolling farmlands.  We offer picnic tables for you to bring your own lunch and refreshments available for sale. After you pick berries, we invite you to stick around with the kids and let them play on the John Deere tractor slide and playground. 38299 Hughesville Road, Hamilton, VA

 

  • Historic Oatlands – our strawberry patch and era-themed attire at this historic mansion will whisk you back to the 1800’s.  While visiting our strawberry patch is free, you can choose to make a day of it by purchasing tour passes for the historical garden and/or mansion in addition to strawberry picking. 20850 Oatlands Plantation Ln, Leesburg, VA

 

  • Gilbert’s Corner – strawberry picking in its most natural state.  This no-fuss location is perfect for a simple outing.  Parking is available right at the site.  Intersection of Route 15 and Route 50 in Aldie, VA.

 

Packed with nutrients and antioxidants, strawberries are known as one of the most popular you-pick fruits in the area. Customers are encouraged to call the strawberry field hotline at (540) 751-1782 to check field conditions before heading out to the farm.  More information can be found online at www.wegmeyerfarms.com.

strawberries



Jumbo’s Pumpkin Patch

Jumbo’s Pumpkin Patch
6521 Holter Road
Middletown, MD 21769
jumbos.org
 

I had never heard of Jumbo’s Pumpkin Patch until I saw a deal posted for it on Certifikid. After I looked it up online, I found that it was named one of America’s top ten pumpkin patches by msn.com in 2012. So when we had an afternoon free on a beautiful fall day I decided to take the girls to go check it out.

The Huffer family owns the 131 acre working farm and first purchased it in 1870. Jumbo’s was established in 1994 with a roadside wagon and 1-1/2 acres of pumpkins. They now have 30 acres of pick-your-own pumpkins, a 14 acre corn maze, and many other activities.

When we first arrived, we walked up to the big white barn, where I was excited to find out that there is no admission fee to get in. That just makes this place even better!

Jumbosbarn1

The girls spotted the animals and headed in that direction. Jumbo’s has sheep, pigs, calves, cows, goats, chickens, horses, and a very friendly dog.

Jumbosheep         Jumbosdog Jumbocalf         Jumbopig

Jumbo’s has all the festive fall decorations and has fun little signs sprinkled throughout.

Jumboshorsecarriage                     Jumbosmeasuresign

They also have a playground area with a few spring toys, a tractor structure with a slide, and some hay bales for climbing and jumping.

Jumboshay                                               Jumbosspringtoy Jumbosplayground

Near the playground area is a concession stand where you can get meals, drinks, and snacks. There is a large picnic pavilion where you can sit to eat and enjoy the view. This lovely rustic barn is just beyond the picnic area.

Jumbosrusticbarn

Jumbo’s normally doesn’t offer hayrides to the pumpkin patch on weekdays (except for Friday). However, there were several people who were all heading out to the patch at the same time, so a nice employee said he would give us a ride on the tractor. My girls were excited to get to go for a ride and I was happy not to have to lug a cart and two little ones all the way out to the pumpkin patch.

Jumbostractor

It’s a nice ride out to the pumpkin patch as you pass the 14 acre corn maze and some fun decorations like this hay stack chicken. The man who drove the tractor was so nice and offered to stop so Clara could sit on top of the chicken for a photo.

Jumboshaystack

Clara and Mae were very excited about looking for the perfect pumpkin.

Jumbosclara                                                       JumbosMae

The views at Jumbo’s are so spectacular, definitely the prettiest pumpkin patch we have been to so far. I mean, look at this view, so peaceful.

Jumbosview

We stopped at the big white barn before leaving to pay for our pumpkins and also picked up a few Halloween decorations and snacks for the drive home. We had a delightful afternoon at Jumbo’s and will definitely make it a yearly tradition to visit.

Good to Know:

•Admission is free.
•Open 10am-6pm through October 31.
•Corn maze is $5/person (ages 3 & up).
•Additional activities on the weekends include: face painting, pony rides, mini wagon rides, and horse-drawn wagon rides.
•Portable restrooms only.



Sharp’s at Waterford Farm

Sharp’s at Waterford Farm
4003 Jennings Chapel Road
Brookeville, MD 20833
sharpfarm.com

We’ve been so lucky with amazing fall weather that we have had the chance to explore a lot of farms already this season. One that I hadn’t heard much about before is Sharp’s at Waterford Farm in Brookeville. It is a 530 acre working farm located in the western part of Howard County, family-owned and operated since 1903. I haven’t spent much time in this part of Maryland so I was eager to go explore a new place.

Sharpssign

The farm offers free hayrides to a pumpkin patch where you can pick your own pumpkins right off the vine. When we arrived, the tractor was getting ready to take a group of visitors out to the patch, so we hopped right on.

Sharpshayride

It’s a relaxing and scenic ride to the pumpkin patch as you pass cornfields and a small pond. The pumpkin patch includes an area of sugar pumpkins, which are only about 6 to 8 inches in diameter. I learned that the sugar pumpkins are better for cooking because of their firm, non-stringy, sweet flesh. They also make great painting pumpkins.

Sharpshayridegirls        Sharpspond

After the hayride the girls ran right over to look at the chickens and rabbits. The farm also has some friendly goats and cows. There is an animal feed vending machine by the goats if you want to feed them. Clara also enjoyed the observation bee hives.

Sharpscows                             Sharpschickens

Sharpsbees

Sharp’s has a 7-acre corn field that they cut every autumn and transform into a corn maze. The theme of this year’s maze is “Black Bears & Coyotes” and there is educational information about these animals throughout the maze. You will have to answer true and false questions to help lead you on the correct path through the maze. There is also a mini maze that is more appropriate for the little ones.

Sharpscornmaze

Inside this charming, bright red barn is where kids can make a scarecrow or get their face painted.

Sharpsbarn

You can pick your own popcorn in this field.

Sharpspopcorn

Sharp’s also has a country store where they carry jams, jellies, salsa, local honey, apple cider, baked goods and more. They also have a variety of fall decorations including wreaths, indian corn, hay bales, gourds, corn stalks, mums and decorative pumpkins.

Sharpsmarket1         Sharpsmarket

Also inside the country store is a small farm museum, displaying various historical farm tools and equipment.

Sharpsmuseum

It was really nice to visit a “low-key” farm where there wasn’t a crowd of people. It felt good for the soul to get out of the hustle and bustle of our area for a couple hours. My girls never get tired of spending time outdoors on a farm, so of course they had fun!

Sharpsclara

Good to Know:

•Open for the fall season on Saturday, September 27 and every weekend through November 2.
•No admission fee.
•The fee for the corn maze is $7 adults, $5 children, 2 & under are free. Mini maze is $1/person for unlimited trips through the maze.
•On the weekends, JZ’s brick oven pizza truck is onsite selling pizza, barbeque, and hotdogs.
•Sharp’s offers educational farm tours that are great for schools, daycares, scout troops, etc.
•There is a picnic area located by a scenic pond.
•There is a self-guided nature trail.
•Portable restrooms only.



Great Country Farms

Great Country Farms
18780 Foggy Bottom Road
Bluemont, VA 20135
http://www.greatcountryfarms.com
 

Great Country Farms is a 200 acre working farm located at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains outside the village of Bluemont, Virginia. It is about an hour drive from Washington, DC. The girls and I ventured out there last week to meet our friends at the farm for an afternoon of fun.

GCFentrance

After mentioning to Clara that they have a giant jumping pillow, she insisted that we go there first. We spent a good amount of time here bouncing, running, and giggling.

GCFpillow1          GCFpillow2

Next, Clara asked to see the animals. My girls both LOVE animals and will have a great time when we go anywhere that has animals. Great Country Farms has turkeys, pigs, goats, mini horses, rabbits, peacocks, ducks, chickens, and sheep. There is animal feed available to purchase for feeding the goats.

GCFrabbit GCFchickens GCFhorse GCFturkeys

Then we took the kids over to the playground area. There are a few different structures to play on including a ship, tractor, and a monster truck. There is also a corn bin, a giant chess board, and tube slides.

GCFplayground2                    GCFplayground1                    GCFcornbin

Then it was time to go apple picking. I purchased a Certifikid deal for admission and it also included 2 lbs of apples. The wagon for apple picking leaves at the top of every hour. It takes guests across the street and into the Bluemont Vineyard property, which is owned by the same family.

GCFwagon   GCFbluemont

The view is absolutely stunning with the orchards at the base of the hill and the vineyard towards the top.

GCForchard

There were a few different varieties of apples available to pick including Fuji, Ruby John, Honey Crisp, and Jonafree. We decided to pick the Fuji and they were delicious.

GCFapples

As usual, Clara did all the picking while Mae munched on an apple.

GCFapple1

The wagon waits until everyone has returned from picking and then takes all the guests back to the entrance of Great Country Farms.

GCFwagon2

On our way out, we stopped at the farm market to pay for our apples and get a few other goodies. The market offers seasonally fresh produce, local honey, jams, gifts, and snacks.

Of course we had to get the obligatory photo with the giant cow before leaving.

GCFcow

I definitely recommend a trip to Great Country Farms. It is well worth the drive from the city. There are enough activities to keep children busy for several hours. You could also make it a day trip and visit some of the family friendly vineyards in the area.

Additional information:

•Admission is $8/child (ages3-10) & $10/adult on weekdays. $10/child (ages 3-10) & $12/adult on festival weekends. Children under 2 years, active & retired military, CSA, and Fan of the Farm season pass holders, do not pay admission.
•The farm is spread out, so bring a stroller for little ones. There are paths throughout making it stroller friendly.
•CSA memberships available.
•Pick-your-own produce includes cherries, black raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, plums, peaches, blackberries, tomatoes, green beans, peppers, potatoes, concord grapes, pumpkins, kale, swiss chard, & mustard greens.
•Follow Great Country Farms on Facebook & Twitter for updated pick-your-own availability.
•Roosteraunt is open on weekends and serves up cider donuts, kettle corn, hotdogs, pies and other snacks.
•The farm also offers weddings, corporate meetings, birthday parities, and field trips.



Butler’s Orchard

Butler’s Orchard
222000 Davis Mill Road
Germantown, MD 20876
http://www.butlersorchard.com/
 

This family owned and operated farm originated in the 1950s and now includes 300 acres where they grow over 25 kinds of fruits, veggies, and flowers. I started visiting the farm years before having children and now I enjoy taking my girls here several times a year. It is conveniently located off interstate 270 making it quicker to get to than other farms in the area. However, that also means that it is much more crowded, especially on the weekends or during their holiday festivals.

ButlerssignDuring the school year, the weekdays are not busy so I decided to take my girls last Friday. The pick your own crop throughout the year includes: strawberries, sugar snap and English peas, blueberries, tart cherries, flowers, blackberries, potatoes, red raspberries, tomatoes, apples, pumpkins, and Christmas trees. Last week, the apples were not yet ready to pick so we headed to the raspberry field first. The picking was plentiful.

ButlersraspfieldMae was eating the berries faster than Clara and I could pick them so we ended up not having many to take home. At least Mae had a tummy full of delicious raspberries.

ButlersClaraIt was close to 90 degrees that day so the girls did not last long out in the field where there was no shade. We got in the car and I turned up the air conditioning and we drove over to the Sunflower field. Clara has always loved picking flowers.

Butlersflowersign

Butlerssunflower

After picking a few gigantic sunflowers we drove up to the area where the holiday festivals take place. In this space is a playground with a few different wooden structures including a pirate ship, castle, and train.

Butlersplayground ButlersCastle

ButlersBarn

After burning off some energy at the playground, we drove down to the entrance and stopped at the farm market to pay for our raspberries and purchase a few more items. The market is stocked with the season’s fresh produce. They also have a dairy case with local cheese, milk, and eggs. Fresh baked pies and other baked goods, kitchen supplies, and home decorations are also for sale.

ButlersmarketButler’s is probably best known for their Halloween and Easter festivals. Their 34th annual Pumpkin festival is just around the corner: September 27 & 28, October 4, 5, 11, 12, 13, 18, 19, 25, 26. 10am – 5:00pm. This festival has so many fun activities for children including: hayrides, giant slides, straw maze, pumpkinland, pedal tractors, corn hole, pumpkin coach, corn maze, hayloft, pony rides, pumpkin cannon, face painting, kids crafts, and pick your own pumpkins. There is also live music. The festival is $11 per person and children 2 and under are free. We have attended in years past on nice days and it is completely packed with people. We once had to wait over 45 minutes in line to purchase food. So it might be a good idea to pack a picnic if you are there during lunch time.

The Bunnyland Eggstravaganza has similar activities but with an Easter theme: hayride down the bunny trail, rubber duck derby, egg hunt, moon bounce, & bunnies, chicks, & lambs in the barn. Tickets are $8.75 per child and $6.75 per adult. When I have been in years past, the Bunnyland festival has been much less busy than the Pumpkin festival.

Good to know:

•Containers for pick your own are available for purchase in the market. If you bring your own, make sure to have them weighed first.
•For the festivals, it is cash only at the entrance gates. You can purchase tickets with a credit card at the farm market.
•Some of the activities at the festivals are at an additional cost so bring extra cash for face painting, pony rides, etc.
•Portable restrooms only.
•Sign up for the email newsletter to receive updated pick your own information and other news.