Center Grove Orchard has opened their strawberry patch for the first time in 2021, and we were so excited to check it out and pick our own strawberries. This is such a fun place to go as a day date during the summer, or perfect as a family outing!
Typical with their apple picking in the fall, you need to pay to get in the farmyard, then pay separately for either a quarter or a gallon container of u-pick strawberries. They have plenty of parking in front of the barn.
The farmyard includes access to farm animals you can visit, numerous farm activities and games like tractor pulling, rubber duck races, pedal tractor, CGO express train, combine slide, and more for all ages! And don’t forget the infamous corn pool, because there is something so uniquely fun about playing in a pile of corn kernels.
Once you first walk in there is the Coffee Shop, which normally has a variety of coffee selections to choose from. There’s also the Hay Cafe and the Sweet Eats section just around the corner if you want to grab a bite for lunch.
Since it was a sunny, warm day, we opted to try out the newly introduced strawberry slushie! These were delicious and definitely worth trying!
After getting our slushies we decided to walk around the Center Grove Farmyard and check out the farm animals that were out to say hi.
My husband loves petting the goats and it’s always fun to see them playing around the farm and climbing their own playground equipment.
There’s also an option when getting your tickets to buy food cups with goat food so you can feed them. And there’s also a handwashing station near by as well once you’re done.
Next we walked past the sleeping pigs, chickens were in their coop today, and then saw some ducks swimming about.
We also checked out the rubber duck races, where you pump the water and see who can get their rubber duck to the end the quickest. This area also has the corn pool.
Then we boarded the tractor to take us to the strawberry patch. There are typically two tractors running at any time to keep everyone moving. You normally don’t need to wait more than five minutes for a new tractor to be available.
Once we got to the strawberry patch, there are a couple other activities in this section including the tractor pull, and the CGO express train.
The CGO Express Train is a little ride around this area of the patch, you can sometimes spot some more goats and a llama on the far end.
Let’s Start Pickin’ Strawberries!
Once you get here there is another stand where you can purchase your container for strawberry picking. We opted for the smaller size since it’s just the two of us instead of the gallon bucket. It was still plenty, and we ended up sharing it with our family!
After that they ask you to wash your hands before going into the field. They will even let you know which rows are more ripe/ready than others. Then you’re free to start picking!
I think half of the fun is searching for the perfect strawberry, and hunting around within the patch and under the leaves. There was also plenty of space for everyone there to pick their strawberries, and didn’t feel crowded at all.
I also appreciate that they line the rows with straw. I was worried if there was any rain recently that it’d ruin my shoes. Luckily that wasn’t a problem!
After we finished picking our strawberries, we took the tractor back to the farm, and wondered the gift shop a bit. This is full of strawberry-flavored goodies and local farm favorites.
Strawberry popcorn, this was very tempting!
They always have a great baked goods and donut section with seasonal flavors.
My personal local favorite, is The Holton Homestead honey! I’ve been dying to try their creamed honey, so we got a large jar of the blackberry creamed honey and a small cinnamon one as well. This has been so yummy in my coffee and teas already!
Center Grove also has a variety of jams, jellies, and salsas they make and sell as well. We’ve always loved their jellies and usually get a jar every year in the fall.
Hope you get a chance to get out Center Grove’s farmyard and strawberry picking. Keep an eye out on their website and facebook page for any updates on the patch itself, timing and more!