Agritourism businesses getting restarted

By: Alan Wooten - Bladen Journal

Several agritourism sites near Bladen County have reopened following Hurricane Florence and its flooding.

“Agritourism farms in Eastern North Carolina were most affected, but we’ve received reports of damage from flash flooding and high winds in the Triad, Charlotte metro and other parts of the state as well,” said Annie Baggett. She’s the N.C. Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services’s marketing specialist.

Several were already open for the fall season when Florence made landfall Sept. 14 about 7:15 a.m. near Wrightsville Beach. The storm stayed mostly stationary between Wilmington and Myrtle Beach for about three days before spinning west.

A complete list of agritourism activities for the fall season is available at ncagr.gov.

Among those listed in a news release from the Agriculture Department are:

• Hood Swamp Corn Maze in Goldsboro is a sixth-generation family farm that offers educational games and a corn maze. The maze is open Fridays and Saturdays through mid-November.

• Hubb’s Farm in Clinton is home to one of the largest fall festivals in Eastern North Carolina. The farm is open Fridays through Sundays until Nov. 10. Each weekend features a different family friendly theme. The farm is also open for educational tours by appointment Tuesdays through Fridays until Nov. 9.

• Maze Craze at Galloway Farm in Columbus County will be open from Oct. 6-Nov. 24 on Saturdays and Sundays. The farm offers a 13-acre corn maze, hayrides, slides, farm animals and more.

• Sonlight Farms in Kenly is open Saturdays through Nov. 3, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Several special events are planned, including Farm Daze on Oct. 6 and the Black Out Challenge on Oct. 27.

• Flint Rock Farm in Cameron will offer educational activities and on-farm learning for school field trips and family outings through Nov. 16 by appointment. In addition, the farm will hold a “Not Just a Barn Dance” on Oct. 19 and day camps on Nov. 6 and 12, and Dec. 1. Registration for the dance and day camps is required.

• Gallberry Corn Maze in Hope Mills opens for the season Fridays through Sundays until Nov. 4. The farm offers a variety of activities including a six-acre corn maze, jumping pillows, hayrides, firepits, farm animals and more.

• Gross Farms in Sanford is open Fridays through Sundays until Nov. 4. The pumpkin patch will open Oct. 6. The farm also offers a 10-acre corn maze, slides, pedal cart tracks, picnic areas and more.

• Huckleberry Trail Farm in Siler City will be open its pumpkin patch Saturdays and Sundays through Oct. 29. Field trips are available on Thursdays and Fridays. The farm offers accessible parking and many activities for those in wheelchairs.

• Lazy O Farm in Smithfield will host a family friendly Trick-or-Treating Corn Maze on Oct. 27 from 1 to 5 p.m. Visitors are encouraged to wear their costumes and children 12 and under can go trick-or-treating through the maze.

• Millstone Creek Orchards in Ramseur will celebrate all things pumpkin with its OktoberFest, each Saturday and Sunday in October. Each Friday and Saturday, the orchard will stay open from 5-9 p.m. for hayrides, movies and a musical lightshow. In November, the orchard will host its Fall Carnivale with pecan picking, turkey shoot, firepits and more.

• Rabbit Ridge Nursery in Coats offers tours and pick-your-own fall berries. The nursery currently has red and gold raspberries, and muscadine grapes available. Hours are Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon.

Alan Wooten

Bladen Journal