Foodie Fun: Agritourism Getaways
Looking for a fun and educational trip to Fort Wayne? Come visit Tanglewood Berry Farm, Kuehnert Dairy Farm or any of the areas' nine farms and vineyards. Learn about Indiana farming and why it is one of the state's biggest and oldest industries with farm tours, children camps and more!
Start out your time-travelling adventure at Kuehnert Dairy Farm, a Fort Wayne tradition for six generations. Kuehnert offers public tours by appointment and is located just west of Fort Wayne. This farm provides tours of the grounds and the inner workings of the dairy operation.
Continue your agricultural tour of Allen County by stopping by Salomon Farm Park. The result of a local farming family's love for their community and devotion to the education of the younger generations, Salomon Farm hosts a variety of classes and programs for children and adults related to nature and local agriculture. Salomon Farm also provides a scenic, fully paved 1.7 mile trail for bike rides and leisurely walks through the grounds. On the fourth Saturday of the month, Salomon Farm invites visitors to join the Maumee Valley Blacksmiths to watch, learn and participate in the ancient art of metallurgy.
Salomon Farm Park
After all that time out in the fields, visitors will surely have gained a farmer's appetite and should head to any of Fort Wayne's local and farm-to-fork restaurants. Fort Wayne houses some fantastic options for lunch for anyone looking for fresh, local and clean eating. Bravas Burgers on Fairfield uses locally raised, grass-fed beef burgers served on buns made from Fort Wayne's own Zinnia's Bakery. Also downtown, Pembroke Bakery and Café serves gluten-free and vegan bakery treats as well as a full salad bar and a slew of vegan and non-vegan sandwiches.
Step back in time to the early 1800s at Moose Lake Christian Craft Village! Located half an hour from Fort Wayne, just off of State Road 3, this year-round attraction offers cabin rentals, a 5-acre man made lake and picnic areas. There is even a craft village that includes Exclusively Yours Jewelry and Boutique where guests can enjoy custom, beautifully handmade jewelry and other local items. When it's time for lunch, Mackey's General Store is home offers a wide variety of Amish cheeses, baked goods and gourmet Amish sandwiches served all day. Visitors can also purchase hand crafted items and browse the shelves of one of the area's largest Amish jar goods.
On the water, Moose Lake Christian Craft Village has canoe rentals, paddle boats and even hydro bikes that can be taken out over the lake for a jaunt on the water. The anglers of the family will also have their fun in the sun as the lake has been filled with over 20,000 fish ranging from large and small mouth bass to bluegill to catfish.
If your family is in the mood for something a little more off the beaten path, Fuzz and Fur Farm is an operation around Fort Wayne that is home to a wide variety of exotic livestock like Huacaya Alpacas and Nigerian Dwarf Dairy Goats - as well as ducks and chickens. This farm is open to public tours and is an exciting way to experience a different type of farming here in Allen County. The owners also have a store where visitors can purchase homemade clothing from the wool of their animals.
Advocates for the honey bee and all it does for our ecosystem, the Southwest Honey Company works to spread awareness about the declining population of the honey bees and the delicious honey they create. To help spread the word, the Southwest Honey Company offers multiple interactive activities for all ages that are bee-themed and help spread awareness of the importance of honey bees in our ecosystem. Programs like “Bees & Brew” is a honey wine/beer tasting for adults, “Bees & Tea” is for seniors who want to relax with some baked goods and honey tea, and there are educational programs for children of all ages. Book online at southwesthoney.com. Can’t go to the honey? No problem! You can request the Southwest Honey Company bring its programs to you by placing your request online as well.
In the northeast area of Fort Wayne, just across from Metea Park is Cedar Creek Produce where throughout the summer, families can pick their own strawberries, blueberries and raspberries during the fall. Visitors are also encouraged to visit the produce store on site where they have seasonal greens, fruits, veggies and freshly harvested maple syrup. Not only do the folks at Cedar Creek Produce deal with fruits and veggies, they have also delved into raising naturally-fed, organic pigs and cattle with meat available to the public. This year, Cedar Creek has added the famed Morel mushrooms to the list of available products as well as duck and geese eggs that offer a variety of different health benefits than their chicken eggs.
Half an hour from Fort Wayne, Pasture's Delights took a concentrated dairy farm with more than 400 cows and converted it into a pasture-rich, free range dairy operation. Using only grass-fed cows, Pasture's Delight delivers fresh, raw milk to more than 30 locations across northern Indiana. While Pastures Delight typically only has one afternoon tour per month - usually the 2nd Saturday - visitors of the farm can walk around the farm discussing the small operation and sustainable farming. The tour runs around an hour. Visitors are offered a chance to sample Pastures Delight's fresh raw milk.
Before leaving Fort Wayne, visitors should definitely stop by The Olive Twist. An olive oil and vinegar tasting bar located on Jefferson Blvd, The Olive Twist is a great place to try unique and exceptional oils and vinegars ranging from Cilantro and Roasted Onion Infused to Wild Mushroom and Sage Infused olive oils and everything in between. The Olive Twist also features a multitude of fruit based and white balsamic and wine vinegars, each with their own unique blend of flavors and infusions making this spot on the map a must see.
If your family is looking for adventure around Allen County, Sechler's Pickles will not disappoint. Right on the border of Indiana and Ohio, Sechler's offers a unique blend of flavors to their pickles and relishes that are not limited to cucumbers. Other options include candied fruits, pickled onions and cauliflower along with salsas and pickled peppers - how many can you pick, Peter Piper? Sechler's also offers guided tours of the plant for families and groups for those interested in seeing how pickled are made and how Sechler's puts their own spin on them.
Sechler Pickles and The Olive Twist
Fort Wayne in the Fall
Later in the year there are a ton of harvest festivals and pumpkin patches that open for families to enjoy in Allen County. During September, visitors will be treated to the Annual Fall Festival hosted by the Kuehnert family at the Kuehnert Dairy Farm. This festival includes tours of the farm, games and activities and information on how baby calves are cared for. The festival also touts a five-acre corn maze, hayrides, pumpkin painting. Ice cream, grilled cheese sandwiches and soft serve ice cream is also available, all made with the farm's fresh milk.
Nothing says fall like apple-picking and Cooks Orchard and Farm Market own several acres of apple trees that allow visitors to pick their own apples. Guests can also stop into the store and purchase fresh products such as: produce, pumpkins, jams, freshly made cider and more. Cooks offers scheduled group tours for churches, schools and day cares.
Of course, no harvest visit to Fort Wayne is complete without visiting one of the local corn mazes and pumpkin patches and the Amazing Fall Fun: Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch farm is the place to be. Located just outside of Waterloo, forty-five minutes north of Fort Wayne, Amazing Fall Fun is home to a 12 acre corn maze. This unique maze is split into two phases that each have their own degree of difficulty and include games for the family, bridges and a tube slide to help guide you to the exit. Outside of the maze, visitors can browse the over 75 different types of pumpkins and gourds in one of Indiana's largest pumpkin patches. This patch contains a wide variety of products to choose from ranging from 50 pound behemoths to the smaller, decorative gourds. Amazing Fall Fun offers many other activities for families and kids of all ages including corn hole, a hay mountain, wheelbarrow racing and more!
If you stopped by Cedar Creek Produce during the summer and didn't get your fill of freshly picked berries, fruits and veggies, then visit again in the fall and they will have an entirely new set of crops and products available. During the Halloween season, they create a haunted corn maze and a hay tractor. They also sell their honey made with local bees and using local pollen that is said to help with seasonal allergies.
This is just a small sample of attractions and activities that offer a fun, educational and tasty trip to Fort Wayne and gives families a glimpse into an industry that - according to inforplease.com takes up almost three quarters of the state's land. Agriculture has always been a huge part of Indiana and now families can experience life on the farm here in Allen County.
- Advanced Tree Technology - New Haven, IN - fast growing, genetically superior trees that offer you-pick in apples in dozens of varities
- Hilger Family Farm - Fresh, u-pick produce and farm market
- Degrandchamp's Pumpkin Patch (Fall) - Pumpkin picking farm
- Ridenour Acres (Fall) - Angola, IN - Corn Maze, haunted woods, pumpkin patch
- Moose Lake Christian Craft Village (Fall) - Moose Lake Fall Festival at the Village and Chainsaw Carving
Metea County Park at Sunset