Better late than never. Here is a post we started at the end of our last trip. You can read Harvest Host part 1 here.
Here it is April 16th and we find ourselves on schedule for our April 26th rendezvous with Connor, our grandson, in Bennington, Vermont. We are parked at another Harvest Host stop. Tuscon Hills Winery in Effingham, Illinois.
A Harvest Host membership allows you to access a list of farms, museums, and wineries that are RV friendly. They allow you to spend the night on their property for free. You are expected to purchase something from whatever the establishment has to offer.
Tuscan Hills Winery is the 6th of 13 Harvest Host locations we are planning to visit on our month long journey back to NH. We’ve sprinkled a couple wineries into our planned stops. Neither one of us drinks wine so we feel a little guilty since you are supposed to support the host by purchasing something. Here they had a restaurant so we bought a pizza for dinner.
After a 177 mile back road drive we arrive at another winery. Chateau de Pique Winery and Brewery is the only stop we have scheduled in Indiana. The tasting and event room is located in a beautiful old converted horse barn. We bought a bottle of wine as a gift for our daughter, who does like wine.
We moved on to our next Harvest Host. Our timing wasn’t the greatest for visiting Fulton Farms in Troy, Ohio. It would be another 4 days before they opened for the season. They were kind enough to let us park in their parking lot just the same. To bad, we were hoping to purchase some fresh asparagus.
The next day, with Google Maps still set on “Avoid Highways” we arrive at Fox Hollow Farm, in Fredericktown, Ohio. Boy did I mess up here. On the phone, Jesse the owner, said the parking area was at the 90 degree turn in the driveway. Do not go past that turn. Yup, I drove right around the corner and up to the house. Luckily there was just enough room at the house to get Shiny turned around.
Once we got settled in Jesse’s mom and dad, Bruce and Lisa, who live on the farm, gave us a tour. The farm is organic and they take pride in that. It was interesting to see what they have done to protect their farm animals from predators. They have had a battle with raccoons and hawks getting past their barriers and into their egg laying chickens, loosing a third of the chickens last year. We stocked up on lamb and chicken products here.
As Shiny was parked in the middle of the farm we drifted off to sleep that night with the mooing of cows, the oinks and grunts of hogs, and the baa baa of lambs.
On to Maize Valley Market, Winery & Craft Brewery which is located in Hartville, Ohio. We got to stay in the parking lot on the night of their adult Easter Egg Hunt. With big cash prizes at stake, the parking lot was jam packed. This was entertaining and also a bit weird as we lay in bed when the hunt was over, listening through thin sheets of aluminum, as drunken revelers said good night to each other.
We continued east into Pennsylvania where we stopped at Sprague Farm and Brew Works. The hosts were friendly and hardworking. We drank lots of really good craft beer while a local band played the same sets they had been playing for the past 40 years. What fun!
We stopped at Niagara Falls on our first trip across the country in 1978. Neither of us remember anything of that stop 41 years ago. So we decided to pay the honeymoon capital of the world another visit. To be honest we were underwhelmed but had a good time anyway. We walked across the Rainbow Bridge into Canada and found the Canadians had a unique take on the Game Of Thrones.
By the time we got to Fly Creek Cider Mill near Cooperstown, NY, I have to say that we were more than a little ready to get to Vermont and to see our grandson. We did have a fun time walking around this beautiful area and Larry got to check out the Baseball Hall of Fame.
So what do we think of Harvest Host?
All in all it’s a good tool to have in your Boondocking toolbox. But since you are expected to buy something from the host, free it is not. 🙂