By Cora Markowitz
Take a drive ﾗ or walk, if you’d prefer a sizeable stroll ﾗ through the Brown Family Environmental Center onto Township Road, and you will find the Glen Hill Orchard on the right, a vast orchard that produces apples for everything from snacking to cider or cooking.
Glen Hill has a small market on its premises, with a variety of apples, apple treats and jams, apple butter and, of course, apple cider.
Though the orchard does not offer traditional apple picking, it produces an extraordinary crop, shipping about $10 million worth of produce to commercial stores and markets each year.
Glen Hill offered apple picking in the past, but its rapid expansion has made that business nearly impossible. “As we grew in size, it wasn’t a good thing for us,” Glen Hill’s Manager Maureen Buchwald said.
So instead of hosting pickers on the orchard itself, Glen Hill contributes apples to various stores throughout Mount Vernon and has also sold apples to AVI at Kenyon.
Throughout the orchard’s development, Glen Hill’s most loyal costumers have been the Amish. “They’re one of the few groups of people that still process food in the home,” Buchwald said. “The fresh market ﾗ the apples you eat out of hand ﾗ is still a major market for our business.”
While Glen Hill is not the place to recreationally pick apples for yourself, its impressive size and reportedly superb apple butter make it a stop worth your while.
Don’t despair, fall-loving Kenyon students. Legends Hill Orchard awaits, and with it every delight that fall has to offer. Just a 25-minute drive away, the orchard is well worth the trip. Take some friends and spend a day shopping at the country store, strolling through the orchards and picking apples right off the branch.
Legends Hill offers apple-picking, fresh pumpkins and homemade Amish foods. The orchard is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday thru Saturday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. The market offers a wide variety of treats including pumpkins, buckeye candies, Amish cheese and other farm-fresh delicacies.
Cider is offered every day at the market, along with an ever-varying assortment of fresh produce.
Along with delicious treats, the orchard also sells a variety of Amish-made furniture and wares from rocking chairs to baskets hand-woven by a local Amish man, Eli Gingerich. Everything sold at the store is locally grown or made, even down to the carefully handwritten ingredient list on the bags of homemade buckeye candies.
In the middle of farm country, it’s easy to enjoy the fall season and help local farmers. So get out into the crisp fall air, put on some layers, toss some leaves and head to the orchards for a quintessential fall day.
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