Welcome to harvest season! This is the time when apples, pumpkins and squashes are the stars of the culinary show and days trips to the orchard are not just fun, but expected. There’s almost nothing better than fruit right off the tree for the multitudes of crisps, pies, applesauce, apple butter, sides for pork, baked apples, caramel apples and more.
As a refresher, so far we know all of the following can be found on a trip to Minnesota…
- Detach from your daily stress and go have some fun.
- Get exposed to new experiences.
- Create memories for the future.
- Fall in Minnesota is a terrific time.
- Exciting outdoor thrill seeking opportunities
- Awesome indoor thrill seeking opportunities
- Zoos and Aquariums to visit
- Awesome Outdoor parks
- Cool Indoor parks
- Unique museums and the Children’s Theater
In your travels to Minnesota this fall for the anomaly, take a moment to sample the fruits of our state – we are the home of the developers of the Honeycrisp apple. The apple breeding program at the University of Minnesota started in 1888. Over 30 varieties have been developed there. Some of the varieties developed by the U of M and still available for purchase today, besides the Honeycrisp, are Zestar, the SweeTango, the HoneyGold, the Haralson and the Fireside.
Grab your hoodie, a good pair of walking shoes and a bottle of water and let’s go…..
Apple Picking and Corn Mazes*
Pine Tree Apple Orchard. During the fall, this family farm offers weekend entertainment, pony rides, wagon rides and a corn maze. Pick your own pumpkins and apples, or purchase bakery products, apples, cider, gifts and more. Check the website for what’s ripe and daily events. 450 Apple Orchard Rd White Bear Lake, MN 55110 http://www.pinetreeappleorchard.com/
Twin Cities Harvest Festival and Maze. Explore 20 acres of activities and attractions in the fall, including a corn maze, a corn pit, a straw-bale maze, a kids play area, live music, a petting zoo, hayrides, a climbing wall, a pumpkin slinger, food vendors, pony rides, a gunny-sack slide, helicopter rides and pumpkin picking. On the SE corner of 109th Ave and Highway 169 in Brooklyn Park. Enter on 109th Ave. https://twincitiesmaze.com/
Sever’s Corn Maze. Yep, it’s a corn maze. Also includes a tire mountain, mini pumpkin blasters, a straw-bale maze, a corn pit, a giant slide, live music, pig races, and a jumping pillow. 1100 Canterbury Rd. Shakopee, MN 55379 https://seversfallfestival.com/
*Note: these are some of the biggest and most popular apple picking spots in Minnesota, and we Minnesotans take our fall festivities Very Seriously. You can expect crowds. You may run into mud. Come prepared to handle seasonal allergies. There are lesser-known apple picking opportunities if you’re willing to forgo the hay rides and the corn mazes and the wanton pumpkin smashing activities. Check http://minnesotagrown.com or ask a local; lots of us have favorite spots and are more than willing to share!
BUT! If you just want fresh local apples without the hassle at a decent price….consider stopping at any Lund’s location and perusing their local produce section. There are two Lunds locations within walking distance of downtown Minneapolis. You’re welcome. http://lundsandbyerlys.com/our-stores/locations/