Appleton Farms in Ipswich is one of the oldest continuously operating farms in the United States. From Newburyport, it is a quick twenty minute drive and a lovely place to escape on a cold winter day.
DRIVE: Slowly, listening to 92.5 the River. (I love you Dana Marshall!)
EAT: Might as well make a historic day of things and pop into the Village Pancake House. This beauty was built in 1660 and I have a soft spot for the floral wallpaper. The crowd is kind, a fellow diner helped me button my son’s jacket upon exit. It could have been because the entire restaurant was ready for us to leave, or just old fashion New England kindness. One will never know. But thank you, sir, all the same.
DO: Stop in at the dairy farm and buy Maple Butter and Appleton Farm Cheese. After typing that statement I’m realizing why my pants don’t button anymore. So, on second thought, perhaps just purchase one or the other. Head over to the farm house on a day when an activity scheduled. We arrived, per usual, promptly at opening and managed to be the only group for about an hour. This meant lots of one-on-one time for my children and the lovely staff. We colored, made a snowman out of a sock and beans, and enjoyed and hot chocolate on tap. Plus it was free!
There are tons of great activities coming up at Appleton Farms for families, including my personal favorite, a barn tour and butter making class. (Sign up here.) We ended our visit exploring the library, which was filled with beautiful antique farming books, comfortable seats, and huge windows with picturesque views of the sprawling, snow-covered farm.
ND NOTE: Visit without children and check on the amazing line up of the Appleton Cooks series. The Appleton Farm House was recently renovated and the kitchen space is beautiful, enjoy a night out while learning about local food and how to make amazing meals.