Since June is Dairy Month in Vermont, why not consider taking the family on a tour of one of Vermont's most successful dairy farms?
Check out Sugarbush Farms in Woodstock which caters to local and out-of-state visitors. Jack and Marion Ayres bought the farm in 1945 with a dream to make a go of country living. They were the first folks in Vermont to start packaging cheese in waxed bars so they would travel well without refrigeration. The Luce family now operates the farm.
Visit the farm's dairy operation and sugarhouse and learn how maple trees are tapped in the spring and how maple syrup is made. A display is open year round, although the actual maple syrup making season is in March and April.
Sample four grades of the Luce's Pure Vermont maple syrup at the farm and let our family explain the process of making syrup and the differences in the grades.
In Vermont, cheese is made the traditional way which provides the best flavor and old fashioned quality. Sugarbush cheeses are hand cut and hand wrapped. The cheese is hand dipped in three coats of special cheese coating wax to lock in the peak flavor and allows for safe shipping and long keeping. See a workroom where dairy workers hand wrap and hand wax the cheese, making the cheese suitable to carry or ship home.
Enjoy personal service while sampling 14 cheeses including Sharp Cheddar Cheese aged over three years and Hickory and Maple Naturally Smoked Cheese.
Shop in Sugarbush's three-room farmhouse gift shop. Enjoy samples of some of Vermont's best jams, mustards and maple spreads. Shipping available.
Walk on Sugarbush's nature trail to the maple woods. Follow the path the draft horses use in the spring to collect the sap. Learn how maple trees are tapped both with buckets and plastic tubing which saves our family sap collection time.
In warmer months make friends with our farm animals which usually include a baby calf, Belgian draft horses, chickens, rabbits, sheep and goats.
Sugarbush Farm Chapel
Spend some reflective time in a farm chapel built by farm owner Jeff Luce and used both for weddings and personal quiet time.
Directions: Farm is located in central Vermont close to both I-89 and I -91. Exit 1 on I- 89 will bring you to U.S. Route 4. Go West on Route 4 seven miles (passing over Quechee Gorge), until you come to the village of Taftsville, a tiny hamlet with a historic red covered bridge spanning the Ottaquechee River.Start watching for the covered bridge a quarter mile after you pass the intersection of Route 4 and Route 12. Turn right off Route 4 and Cross the Covered Bridge, go to the top of the hill, turn left on to Hillside Road, and follow the yellow directional signs to Sugarbush Farm Road. It is three miles from the bridge to Sugarbush Farm.
Special thanks to Sugrabush Farm for this content.