The new Fall season has not officially started, but it is safe to say that with all the festivities of the New York Fashion Week and kids going back to school, NY folks have really started to live it up.
Our crew was no exception. The moment the first cool breeze touched our faces we knew it was time. Time for apple picking. Last year we had a wonderful experience at Pennings Orchards in Warwick, NY, but this year we wanted to share our first apple picking experience with our wonderful friend, Kim from The Yummy Mummy, and her crew. Kim and her family have become like an extension of ours and we love spending time with them. So we packed the kids and drove an hour upstate to New Paltz, NY where we met up with them for the day.
New Paltz is a cute town located in the Wallkill River Valley and home to The College of New Paltz, State University of New York. It’s a great distance from the city, with winding and hilly roads, tons of corn and sunflower fields, and a community that seems to be made up of both long time residents and newcomers from the city.
There are several orchards to choose from, and should you drive to New Paltz now, you will see the signs lined up along the way directing you to one or another orchard or winery in the area. Kim took us to Jenkins-Leuken.
Jenkins-Leuken is located just minutes from downtown New Paltz. One side has the orchards, with a variation of u-pick apples to choose from. They also offer pumpkin picking and hay rides later in the season and are growing their corn maze for 2010.
The children delighted in picking their apples (you choose from $10 to $18 bags before heading down to the orchard), and spent a good deal of time exploring, tasting, and picking their favorites. It’s a quick visit if you go earlier like we did. There is more to do later on, but for us it was perfect.
Across, and little further down the road, is the orchard store, which offers fresh baked goods, apple cider, apple cider donuts, veggies, fruits, and other farm-grown goodies.
We spent some time at the local playground before heading over to Kim and her family’s home. We enjoyed our time with friends, teaching the 12 year old how to grill, watching the little ones run around naked eating apples, and bonding with each other before heading back to the city.
Fall is one of my favorite seasons. I am looking forward to visiting our friends upstate soon and re-visiting the orchards for pumpkin season. (Check out our pumpkin picking farm choice last year: Colonial Springs Farm.)