Family fall festival fun (& a farm) at Shaker Village's HarvestFest this weekend [Family & Parenting]

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Family fall festival fun (& a farm) at Shaker Village's HarvestFest this w

My family moved back to Louisville last October, and one of our first daytrips was to Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, about a ninety-minute drive from Louisville, in Harrodsburg. I hadn't been since I was a little girl, and my memories were dull. But I hope my children relish the memories they've already made this year during our two visits to this Kentucky treasure. This weekend's HarvestFest offers you the perfect opportunity to experience this gorgeous historical farm in all its fall splendor.

On Saturday, September 29 and Sunday, September 30 from 10:00 am-5:00 pm, treat your kids to an old-school fall festival, complete with hay rides, farm animals, sheep shearing, U-pick apples and pumpkins, dessert contests, and honey bee demonstrations. The Kids' Village will include arts and crafts, hay climbing, Farm Olympics, and bobbing for apples. (Have your kids ever bobbed for apples? Neither have mine. Maybe now is the time to let them indulge in this autumn childhood rite-of-passage. Germaphobes, just look the other way.) Of course, food, wine, and beer will be available.

One of my favorite aspects of Shaker Village, besides the beautifully simple architecture framed by miles of the famous stone fences, is their commitment to teaching kids about "real" food. The Shakers were masters of a "farm-to-table" lifestyle long before it was trendy; after you’ve walked the fields and milked the cows, you might want to indulge in some home-cooked goodness at the Inn at Shaker Village.

Other events this weekend include:

  • The Heirloom Supper, September 28- casual supper featuring the best dishes from the last 50 years, $25/adults; $12.50 kids 11 & under
  • The Harvest 5-Mile Trail Run, September 29 at 8:00
  • Evenings on the Lawn, September 28 & 29 from 6:00-10:00 pm- free fun toasting marshmallows by the bonfire
  • Spirit Strolls to the Graveyard, September 28 & 29, 6:30 and 8:00- free lantern-lit stroll down to the graveyard to hear spooky stories
  • Guided Fall Foliage Hike, September 29 at 1:30

Visit http://www.shakervillageky.org or call (859) 734-5411 for dining and race registration and more information. Village tour admission is $15.00 (ages 13 and above) or $5 (ages 6-12). If you go this weekend, you'll come home with more than pumpkins and a full belly—you'll have some great memories, too.

Photos: Courtesy of Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill