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Minnesota Apple Orchards Yield Bumper Crop of Family Fun


These 15 Apple Orchards are a Ripe Pick for Families

As seasons change the air gets a bit crisper like the apples across Minnesota orchards. Favorable weather has created a bumper crop of high quality apples across the state and fall festivities for the whole family.
The quality this year is just off the charts. It’s been fantastic. We are getting high quality apples off a lot of the trees, says JP Jacobson, the president of the Minnesota Apple Growers Association.
Minnesota is one of the best apple-growing states across the country. We have a really nice cool climate. There are different varieties that respond better to cool climates, like Honeycrisp, Sweet Tango and Haralson that were bred and raised in Minnesota. They do better here, Jacobson said.
You can also find a high yield of family fun with many orchards offering pick-your-own apples, fresh cider, pumpkins, fall raspberries and prize-winning bakeries. Outdoor activities include crop mazes, petting zoos and hay rides.
We’ve compiled a list of 15 of the best apple orchards for family fun in the Twin Cities area. Also below are links to three websites that feature lists and maps for just about every apple orchard in Minnesota.
Enjoy the fall and we hope to see you’ll join us in taking part in a Minnesota tradition!

Apple Orchard Resources

Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s Minnesota Grown offers a free statewide guide to more than 100 apple orchards.
Orange Pippin is a comprehensive resource for apples and orchards.
The Apple Journal has an extensive list of orchards.

Twin Cities Apple Orchards

Aamodt’s Apple Farm, Stillwater
Bagged and pick-your-own apples, cider, bakery with pies and more, bratwurst, tractor-pulled wagon and kiddie train rides, hay bale maze, goat pen, and pedal tractors and trikes for little kids. Aamodt’s has scenic hot air balloon rides and a neat apple barn with bakery to select some yummy treats to take home. Plus an added bonus is St. Croix Vineyard has a tasting room a few steps away. Phone: 651-439-3127

Afton Apple Orchards, Afton
Bagged and pick-your-own apples, fall raspberries, pumpkins, wagon rides, 15-acre corn maze, straw bale maze, straw mountain, tire hill, petting farm, “train” rides and bakery stocked with pies, pastries and jams. Phone: 651-436-8385

Apple Jack Orchards, Delano
A cheerful, family-run orchard, with lots of varieties of apples, including the latest University of Minnesota apple, SweeTango. There’s lots of things to do for children, like a play area, petting zoo, and wagon rides all week, and entertainment and live music are added at the weekend.
Phone: 763 972-6673

Anoka County Farms, Ham Lake
This farm has plenty of things to do, to turn apple picking into a full family day out. Hay rides, corn maze, petting zoo, food for sale, pony rides, pumpkin patch, and all the classic fall farm entertainment.
Phone: 763-427-0000

Applewood Orchard, Lakeville
Bagged and pick-your-own apples, fall raspberries, 8-acre corn maze, hedge maze for kids, wagon rides, haystack and store with baked goods and jams.
Phone: 952-985-5425

Emma Krumbee’s Orchard and Farm, Belle Plaine
Lots of fall attractions at this popular farm include pick-your-own apples, petting zoo, maze, restaurant, and an annual scarecrow festival. Take a tractor ride out to the apple orchards to pick your own apples. There is an admission charge for some attractions at the farm.
Phone: 952-873-4334

Fireside Orchard and Gardens, Northfield
This apple orchard, about 40 minutes south of Minneapolis, also grows plenty of Halloween pumpkins, and has a collection of vintage tractors to admire.
Phone: 507-663-1376

Homestead Orchard, Maple Plain
Claiming to be the oldest, and largest apple orchard in the area, with 8,000 trees. As well as Homestead Orchard’s vast apple orchard, there is also a pumpkin patch, plus a petting zoo, free hayrides, jumping castle and straw pile. Fall fun at its finest. (Note: They don’t have a website, but you can find them on Facebook and on Yelp).
Phone: 763 479-3186

McDougall’s Apple Junction, Hastings
McDougalls, in a scenic St. Croix Valley location, has pre-picked apples for sale, as well as a pick-your-own pumpkin patch, a petting zoo, a children’s playground, grilled apple brats, rides and a corn maze.
Phone: 651-480-4701
McDougalls Apple Orchard

Minnesota Harvest Apple, Jordan
Not just apples at this orchard: this farm has a petting zoo, playground, pumpkin patch, a corn maze, horse rides, live music and seasonal entertainment plus apples galore.
Phone: 952-492-2785
Minnetonka Orchards, Mound
This apple orchard is a popular destination with lots of attractions, hayrides, playground, seasonal events and entertainment. Minnetonka Orchards has an entrance charge, but only on the weekends, so the thrifty can save by visiting during the week.
Phone: 763-479-6530
Natura Farms, Marine-on-St. Croix
Pick your own apples at Natura Farm, as well as other seasonal produce like red raspberries and grapes.
Phone: 651 433-5850

Pine Tree Apple Orchard, White Bear Lake
Bagged apples, pumpkins, corn maze, pony rides, live music and bakery stocked with pies, caramel apples and more.
Phone: 651-429-7202
Pleasant Valley Orchard, Taylors Falls
The orchard offers sweeping views of the St. Croix Valley in full fall dress. Apple shed, vintage barn, lots of apples, bakery items and gift shop, pick-your-own weekends, hayrides, farm animals, kid’s corral, nature trail, and picnic area.
Phone: 651-257-9159
Whistling Well Farm, Hastings
Bagged and pick-your-own apples, mums, pumpkins, a chicken coop to explore and a shop stocked with local honey, jams, corn shocks, gourds and fall decorations.
Phone: 651-998-0301

SOURCES: Minnesota Department of Agriculture, CBS Minneapolis, Star Tribune, Apple Journal

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