Saturday morning I wasn’t feeling 100%, my husband was in pain from pulling a muscle in his chest and my daughter was simply grouchy. I told her that maybe her Christmas dress wasn’t the best thing to wear to a farm, and she turned and gave me the cutest mean look she could give me. When we got in the car around 9am, I remember thinking this day is either going to be great or a disaster.
When a friend of ours asked us what we were doing for Maple Weekend, as a native Pennsylvanian and having only been in Maine for less than two years, my first question was “what is Maple Weekend?” She explained that it is a weekend where the Maple Syrup is prepared and that Chase Farms has family friendly events. My husband then found that The Weekly Sentinel paper had a story on the event and convinced me to go for breakfast. After all where else could you get warm Maple syrup that was in a tree only a few hours earlier?
When I lived in Pennsylvania we used to go to some local farms. They were fun, but honestly, very commercial. If you are looking for some relaxing Maine hospitality with smile, Chase Farms did an amazing job impressing me.
The farm store is clean and welcoming. They sell everything from fresh vegetables to fresh baked goods including a whole selection of Stone Wall Kitchen products. Since they also raise cattle and pigs at the farm, they have a freezer section of farm raised antibiotic free meats. By the register, free popcorn was available for the children. The staff was warm and friendly and greeted us with a smile when we walked in.
Through the door on the left they had an ice cream and cotton candy station set up. On the opposite walls they had Maple flavored items displayed and the line to purchase the $8 adult/$5 Stone Wall Kitchen pancake and bacon breakfast. Toward the back of the greenhouse, they had several tables and chairs set up and a display of the Maple Syrup making process. The delicious and large blueberry or plain pancakes were fluffy and delicious. Although there was a little wait for the bacon, my daughter finished it off; without leaving much for me. Surprisingly, even though there seemed to be tons of people, we found a table to eat at just as easy as we found a parking spot. My husband loved the maple candy and donut with maple flavored icing.
At the register we were also able to purchase tickets for the horse drawn wagon ride at $5 a person. After we finished our breakfast which was complimented by a sweet woman who poured warm maple syrup in my husband’s coffee and on our pancakes, and even indulged my crazy request for powdered sugar; we were excited to get outside.
In the barn while we waited for our wagon ride, we were able to pet horses. My daughter also loved seeing the baby calves, chickens and pigs. The horse drawn wagon ridden by Rick Chase, was great. He showed us how to tap a maple tree and let me ask him the 1000 questions I had about his life and farm. He has been on the farm all his life and his family has owned the property for generations!
When we attend this event next year, we will be sure to bring our mud boots and remember to get tickets early for the horse drawn wagon ride. I’m sure Rick Chase and his wonderful wife will impress us just as much next year!