...if you have a backyard and a kitchen, this blog might be for you!

a chronicle of tips and recipes on everything from gardening to canning and baking your produce, even if you're planted in suburbia...in fact, especially if you are planted in suburbia.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Garden Pilgrimage: Children's Farm at the State Fair

Friday was opening day at the Indiana State Fair and for the second time we as a family attended those first-day festivities. My garden helper and I visited a particularly fun farming exhibit that I thought might make a choice entry in our monthly garden pilgrimage.The exhibit was tucked behind the pioneer village area, where 1800's replica gardens are surrounded by maple syrup cabins, wood-working cabins, old-time tractor displays, period-dress players and the likes.

Behind all these, however, was the area called Little Hands on the Farm. That's what we're visiting with the blog today. We joined the line of parents and youngsters who waited to experience a day in the life: on the farm.

The first stop outfitted the kids with a farm apron and a pint-sized basket for use as they farmed.

As we left the entry station, a fun fence snuggled up against the path that led us to the farming stations.

The first couple of stops included feeding hogs and chickens and collecting eggs.

Then came planting time. Equipped with a hand trowel and seed--a plastic piece the size of a poker chip, each child buried a seed in the bare soil.

Miraculously, one step around the end of the fence brought them to harvesting. (Wouldn't it be nice if it were really that quick and easy?)

After spending time in the vegetable patch, each little farmer moved on to the orchard and picked an apple for his basket.

Next, he went to the sheep barn where he collected a little wool fluff for his basket.

The sun was a bit too bright to tell, but the basket is pretty full with its egg, veggies, apple and wool--all ready to go to market. But, we need to make one last stop...

What's a day on the farm without a visit to the dairy barn...

...and what's a visit to the dairy barn without milking a cow. I wonder if he'd be so lost in thought if it were a real cow.

Finally, farm work is finished. It's market-time.

Little farmers sort their produce into various bins, and then...

...visit the cashier for their big, green farm bucks.

Last stop in this day in the farmer's life: a visit to the grocery store where that farm buck will buy a "real" treat. My little farmer had a hard time deciding between a juice box and a cheese stick.

After all that fun on the farm, we went to find Dad and share the tale of our farming adventure. I hope, gardening reader, you had fun visiting a state fair, children's farm with us as August's garden pilgrimage. If you have young farmers in your life, I'd highly recommend checking your own state fair for a similar attraction. It's a rich experience for would-be farmers.

And in case you didn't notice, my garden helper chose the cheese stick over the juice box--probably the healthiest snack he had there all day!


  1. That looks like fun! Too bad I work all weekend, that looks like a good educational time!

  2. TH, as an FYI, I don't think this exhibit is just on weekends. If you brought the kids down on a weekday, they could go through it then, too. Another bonus: once you've paid to get in the fair in the first place, the exhibit itself is free!