No place tastes more like fall than BelleWood Acres in Lynden.
The orchard and farm have been a favorite of my family for years. The opportunity to pick and play in the crisp autumn air is one my kids never seem to tire of, and out-of-town guests have raved about the experience.
Owners Dorie and John Belisle opened their farm to the public starting in 2002, after having started as a wholesale orchard. In 2012 they opened their farm market and bistro, which is open year-round. The Belisles have continued to expand their offerings to entertain and educate on the farm, including live entertainment on weekends during the summer and fall.
Some of the fun fall events at Bellewood Acres includes “Farm Tunes” from August-September every Friday with live music on the patio, “Harvest Happens” from September-October with farm tours, live music, train rides and more. Check out what they’ve got going on around the farm here.
Once there, you’ll be directed to the rows of apples open for picking that day. (You prepay for the number of bags and the variety you want to pick.)
It doesn’t take long to pick your fill of beautiful, ripe apples, but there’s plenty more to do on the farm.
Nearby, discover the cooling and packing facility, where you can watch as the apples are washed and packed. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch the action in the juicing building or the commercial kitchen, where they make items such as pies and jams.
Dorie says one of the harvest-time favorites, introduced in 2014, is the corn cannons. Aim the cannons to shoot ears of corn toward large tire targets in the field. New last year, and sure to become a favorite, is a corn maze, featuring fun facts about farming in Whatcom County.
After a romp around the farm, stop by the bistro for another perennial favorite: the fresh apple cider doughnuts. Or a slice of pie, or maybe an apple turnover. It’s agony for me every time I visit – what to choose?
One of the best parts of a visit to BelleWood Acres is that it doesn’t have to cost a lot. Many activities are free, John and Dorie encourage families to come out and just walk around the farm. Take the stream walk along 10 Mile Creek, which intersects the farm, and see if you can spot a fish in the salmon-bearing stream. My kids always have fun on the playground constructed solely of old tires.
As much as I love family time at BelleWood, I’m eagerly awaiting a chance for the grown-ups to get an afternoon to take the distillery tour. The distillery opened 2012 along with the new farm store. BelleWood offers “Farm to Glass” distillery tours Saturday and Sunday afternoons at noon and 2 p.m. Call ahead to reserve your space.
For a full schedule of events and the apple-ripening calendar, visit BelleWoodFarms.com.