Clinton County is blessed with lots of farms specializing in raising alpacas and cultivating lavender, pumpkins, a variety of fruits, all designed to cater to regional tourists seeking an afternoon of fun and relaxation.
With traditional entertainment and festivals shuttered across Ohio in response to COVID-19, during a year marked by illness, social distancing, face masks and lengthy closures, Clinton County’s local farms specializing in agritourism are finding significant new interest from urban neighbors seeking opportunities to spend time with family and friends without the anxiety of huge crowds.
Peaceful Acres Lavender Farm in Martinsville illustrates the growing trend. With its fields coming into bloom in June, its scaled-down Summer Solstice Lavender Festival offers visitors a safe opportunity to “stroll our fields and find your peace” picking bundles and buckets of the flowering perennial. The farm also produces a variety of soaps, essential oils, skin care products and candles which it sells year-round online and at various venues.
One-derings Lavender Farm in Clarksville is open for field tours, lunch or tea, sachet-making, wreath-making and other activities this summer. The farm also produces a line of soaps, lotions, sprays and essential oils available online.
At Stokes Berry Farm near Wilmington, a local institution that can fairly claim to have invented agritourism decades ago, strawberries and black raspberries remain on offer in June and July. Adapting to COVID restrictions this year, Stokes has remained open in 2020, experiencing a significant rise in visitors wanting to safely break free of shelter-at-home restrictions.
Nearby KB Alpaca Farm on Gurneyville Road teamed up with Stokes Berry Farm to open simultaneously in June, offering regional visitors more opportunities to experience farm life, the type of coordination that might be a model for strengthening agritourism in Clinton County. KB’s variety of fleece products include rugs and shawls available year-round on its online store.
Cherrybend Pheasant Farm, located on more than 600 acres between Wilmington and Sabina, is a private membership hunting preserve considered one of the finest in Ohio and dating back more than 65 years, drawing visitors from all over the Midwest. Its schedule of events occurs primarily in the fall and winter.
At KalJen Farm and Schappacher Farms, both near Wilmington, cultivation of pumpkin patches is underway in anticipation and preparation of visitors safely enjoying autumn’s harvest season.
At Pot-Luck Greenhouse in Chester Township work is also underway to prepare for autumn weekends of pumpkin-picking and corn mazes.
New Horizon Farm & Dairy in New Vienna produces a variety of milk products, pasture raised beef, free-range chicken and baked goods. This working farm is open most days to visitors.
At Horsefeathers Farm in Clarksville, visitors enjoy interacting with Wallabys, part of the kangaroo family, with space available for family gatherings, company functions youth and sports outings.
Now more than 10 years old, the Barn Quilt Trail with its numerous murals located on barns across the county remains a favorite for many visitors. Preliminary work is now underway to create new maps and marketing materials with assistance from the Clinton County Convention & Visitors Bureau.
Outdoor activities in Clinton County are not limited to farms. The county’s three golf courses, Snow Hill, Majestic Springs and Elks Club, are open, as are the Wilmington and Blanchester park systems, and the county’s two state parks, Cowan and Caesar Creek.