What a great day it was to go apple picking at Fishkill Farms!!! It was warm, sunny, Saturday afternoon when I arrived at the farm. It took about 30 minutes to get to Fishkill Farms from Vassar. However, the drive was definitely part of the experience!! In early October, the hills were the best shades of orange, red, and yellow. Pulling into the farm was breathtaking. Fishkill Farms is surrounded by hills! They have acres of apple orchards, vegetable gardens, a pumpkin patch, and berry bushes.
At eleven in the morning, cars were already crowding the parking lot! This may have been because it was the peak time of year for apple picking as well as a CSA pick-up day. There were many workers directing cars as well as people. Apple picking for the first time was a great experience for me at Fishkill Farms! At the entrance to the orchard, they gave out apple bags for everyone picking apples. It was 30 dollars to fill a whole bag or you had to pay by the pound.
There were so many different kinds of apples to choose from!! However, the different types of tress were labeled and there were many employees around to ask. One employee told me his favorite type of apple was the Macron! They were very sweet and juicy.
After I picked enough apples I went up to the farm store to enjoy live music!! They had a band playing on the lawn as well as barbecue, ice-cream, and freshly-made cider donuts. The cider donuts were amazing!!!
As the day went on, more and more people arrived at the farm. Soon there were more than 100 people there! The line for barbecue and donuts was super long. People were taking there food and sitting on the grass to enjoy the music! There was also a bunny coup by the field that all the children were glued to.
Fishkill Farms is extremely family oriented. The majority of people there were people with young children! There were children running up and down the apple trees as well as the grassy field by the food and entertainment.
By advertising itself as a family friendly destination, Fishkill Farms is able establish itself as an important part of the community. It is a place where families can learn about farming and relax and have a good time with loved ones as well as their community.
However, there is no doubt that being an important part of the community is extremely beneficial to Fishkill Farms. Having free entertainment and food on Saturdays draws many previous as well as new customers to the farm. Fishkill Farms makes a large profit by having events centered around apple picking. They take into consider what the community is looking for, thus people flock to it. Fishkill Farms is a good example of a medium/large farm that is successful at bringing the community together around the principles of sustainable agriculture and local food!!!