If you haven’t gone apple picking yet, I encourage you to get out there. I went yesterday with two of my sisters and their kids, and what a great day we had. We visited Belltown Hill Orchards in South Glastonbury/Portland, CT.
We road in wagons hauled by tractors to several fields to get different varieties, we ate hot apple fritters after, and took more photos, then headed home to spin apples on an apple peeler to make pies and apple sauce, but best of all was biting into a crunchy apple with sweet tart flavors on the way home in the car.
The story of Belltown’s beginnings is inspiring. It began with a purchase of seven acres by a young man emigrating to this country. Today, the family running this farm owns 155 acres of beautiful rolling fields of apples, blueberries, pumpkins, and more.
“In 1904, Louis Preli at age 14 emigrated from Northern Italy to South Glastonbury to work with his uncle hewing railroad ties from the giant chestnut trees which once dominated the area. By the age of 20, Louis saved enough money to purchase seven acres of land where the Farm Market and Bakery is now located.” (source: Belltown Hill Orchard – The Farm)
When I checked out at the register with my 12 lbs of a mixed variety of apples, I asked, “When does apple picking time close for the season?” They replied, “In a couple weeks.” So if you haven’t gone apple pickin’ yet – Get Out There! You won’t regret it.
- Arrive early to beat lines. We went in the early morning.
- Plan to stay awhile, they have picnic tables and a small bakery with goodies to eat. Save room for the fritters!
- Take your camera – lots of great photo opportunities, especially with the kids.
- Wear shoes that protect your feet especially if going early in the morning where the dew is still on the apples and on the grass.
- Bring a backpack. They provide plastic bags with handles to load up your apples as you pick but if you prefer a backpack, that works too.
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