Fall is finally here, and you know what that means: vibrant colors, an autumn breeze, time spent with family and friends and a warm slice of apple pie. And what better way to have it all than by getting in the fall spirit with a trip to an apple orchard?
These orchards have so much more than just apple picking — there are fresh bakeries, cider tastings, wineries, hayrides and more for the entire family. Here are five orchards worth the pick this fall.
Do you remember that time somebody picked you up to help you get the best apple from the top of the tree? Well, now’s your chance to give that friend a call and help you pick from over 200 varieties of apples in the fields of Brightonwoods Orchard.
The two-story treehouse will be the apple of the kids’ eyes as they run around and explore. While the kids are being kids, the adults can sip on some ciders and perries from the AeppelTreow Winery. Also, be sure to fill up on your fair share of homemade jams, treats and plenty of freshly-picked apples.
Pickin’ (or as they say at Eplegaarden, “plukkin’”) your own apples, raspberries and pumpkins is the main event at this old-fashioned family orchard, a quick drive from downtown Madison. For being within reach of the city, you wouldn’t know it: one look around at the old red barn and wide-open fields makes it clear you’re at a place where the air’s a little fresher, the clock moves a little slower and the memories are made a little faster.
You can listen to live folk and bluegrass music in the orchard on Sundays, then hitch a ride on the horse-drawn hayride to get to plukkin’. (Just watch out for the trolls. Did we mention there are trolls?)
A warm, fluffy apple cider pastry is in your hand with sprinkles all over your face — that’s when you realize that you’re not dreaming, you’re at the Erickson Orchard. So share one with a sibling, parent, or friend (or each get your own) and enjoy them together with some fresh apple cider. And these donuts have a history of being at the Erickson bakery for decades, earning a well-deserved reputation as being some of the best around.
Pick your own apples in season, and for an even bigger taste of a Northern Wisconsin autumn, plan your visit during the annual Bayfield Apple Festival for an apple-solutely perfect family day.
Having a story-book level charm, the Wood Orchard Market has everything from a free corn maze, locally-grown fruits and veggies, colorful fall views and (of course) apple cider pops for kids. When you’re in the market, you can find just about anything you’re craving — Door County cherries: doughnuts, strudel, salsa, horseradish sauce, butter and many other tasty treats.
But, have you ever tried “Apple Pie Baked in a Paper Bag?” At last, you can try this and it’s so worth the hype. People come for the pie but stay for the lively atmosphere around the orchard: pick-your-own apples, a corn maze, an impressive bakery, and tractor-pulled hayrides.
Want to make more memories with family and add to your fall bucket list? Check out the Top Ten Things To Do This Fall in Wisconsin.