Follow-up Friday: A Perfect Family Night Activity!

Farnsworth FarmsThis week’s visit to Farnsworth Farms & Cider Mill was a treat for the entire family. Located at 11228 South 700 East in Sandy, you’ve probably passed it a million times. In fact, I’ve lived just minutes away for almost 10 years and never realized what a treasure I had in my own backyard! As a fruit and vegetable lover (nay, fanatic!), I was thrilled to receive an invitation to visit the farm.

The farm is directly adjacent to busy 700 East, but as you drive down the long driveway to get to the store you quickly forget the hustle and bustle of suburban living. I guess I’ve never visited simply because I never knew I was welcome. But as it turns out, scores of school-aged children visit each year as the Farnsworth family is eager to share the experience of living and working on a farm. Not only do school kids visit, but the farm is open to the general public as well. The pick-your-own crops can vary from year to year, but they try to plant things that are popular each year. So if you can’t plant your own garden (or if perhaps your talents lie elsewhere) you can still have your own personal harvest without ever having to pick weeds!

The day we visited we sampled delicious slices of an Israeli melon—a melt-in-your-mouth treat that is as sweet as candy. Also available in the store were various fruit and vegetables brought in from other local farms. The fresh apple cider is pressed on site and is worth the effort to stop in all on its own. We even saw the cider plant and learned how this delectable liquid is made. The tour was engaging and interesting for both the adults and kids. (My eight-year-old son was especially proud because he correctly guessed that each bin can hold 800 apples!) Another favorite moment was when we got to try the fresh apple cider (available in filtered or unfiltered). It was so good that we took a gallon home and my two kids finished off the entire jug in a matter of days.

Farnsworth Farms_IIThe last part of our tour consisted of a hayride through the orchard. We sang songs, learned about the trees, and even found out the difference between hay and straw (answer: for different ends of the horse!). A large portion of the orchard was replanted in the spring of 2008. These little trees will take a few years to grow and begin producing but there are still plenty of apples to go around.

Farnsworth Farms is well worth a visit, whether as an educational field trip or a chance to purchase farm-fresh and local produce. Seasonal fruits include apples, eggplant, pears, peaches, peppers, plums, tomatoes, and more.

11228 South 700 East, Sandy, UT 84070. Phone: 801-571-0858.

Directions: Look for the big red building about 100 yards west of the road. Crops are usually available in August, September, October, November, December. Open: Monday thru Saturday 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, closed Sunday. tomato, corn, and eggplant – late August to mid October or the first frost; apples, peaches, pears, plums – Sept 12 to end of harvest in mid to late October; fresh pressed apple cider starts mid September and continues until the apple supply is gone sometime in the spring; School field trips are available from September to mid October. Payment: Cash, Check, Visa/MasterCard.

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