One of Julian’s favorite books is Farm Days by William Wegman — all about how a “city dog” named Chip goes to work on his Uncle’s farm. Julian is delighted by this idea, and has asked many times if he can go to work on a farm (let’s hope this work ethic carries over into his teenage years!).
So yesterday, I packed a picnic lunch, slathered on the sunscreen and bug spray, dressed the kids in clothes and shoes I knew would get dirty — and we headed to the farm.
Gorman Heritage Farm is a 122-acre working and educational farm located just minutes from 1-71 and 1-75, in Evendale. This is a real, working farm, which invites its visitors to explore and learn the history, methods and values of a working family farm in a natural setting.
There’s a farmyard area with goats, sheep, pigs, chickens (and chicks!), rabbits and horses. There’s farm equipment everywhere — combines, balers, tractors and big trucks. There’s a children’s garden where kids can dig, hoe, plant and harvest. You can even rent a plot at Gorman to grow your own garden! There are real, working beehives, greenhouses and fields full of crops.
My kids and I walked the entire farm grounds, exploring, touching and experiencing. I love how interactive everything was at Gorman — we were invited to go inside the hen house, touch the goats and horses, climb on the (parked) tractors and play in the hayloft. Kids learn best through doing — and at Gorman Farm, you’re given a lot of freedom to do just that.
We went on a dry, warm day, which I’d advise unless you want your kids to “bring the farm home” on their shoes and clothes. Admission for adults is $5 and kids 3-17 are $3, so it cost me a total of $8. The Farm is managed by the Gorman Heritage Farm Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, so you can feel good about helping support and preserve this beautiful piece of Ohio farmland. If you’re interested, you can get a family membership for $75, which gets you free admission to the farm during normal hours, discounts on classes and even free admission to certain events!
Speaking of which, there are several fun, family friendly, fall events coming up at Gorman Farm:
September 19: 5K Trail Run/Walk
Participants will get the chance to explore Gorman during this 5K which winds all through the gardens, fields, trails and farmyard.
October 3-4: Sunflower Festival
This annual celebration of the fall harvest is a local favorite, receiving recognition from Ohio Magazine as one of the best events in the state! Families can tour the sunflower fields by foot or hayride, and their own beautiful bouquet to take home! Pick-your-own pumpkins will also be available.
Weekends from October 10-31: Harvest Days
Celebrate the fall harvest at Gorman Farm on weekends in October beginning the 10th. Hay rides, pumpkins, food and fun (think: pumpkin’ chuckin’!).
On the drive home, Mary asked if we could get a horse. I told her she already had horses (toys) at home, and Julian piped in that they wanted “a real one.”
So, I suppose I can thank Gorman for starting the whole “Can I have a horse?” request in my house. But, I think it was worth it.
Gorman Farm is located at 10052 Reading Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45241. They’re currently open M-F from 9 am – 5 pm, Saturday from 9 am – 3 pm, and closed Sundays. Hours vary by season, so call ahead: 513-563-6663.