Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Cranberry Bog Blog!

Did you know cranberries are Wisconsin’s #1 fruit crop, both in value and acreage? Neither did we until we went on a tour of the cranberry bogs! It’s been on our list of things to do for awhile and this year we finally made it happen. Cranberries are harvested in late September and October, when the fall colors are absolutely gorgeous. Seriously, this was one of the coolest, and most gorgeous tours we’ve ever been on. And we’ve been on a lot of tours!

We went to Glacial Lakes Cranberries near Wisconsin Rapids (acutally in a town called Cranmoor) and for $15 per adult for an hour or so tour, we got to ride the Berry Bus around a huge cranberry farm, through the bogs and everything. The owner of the farm was the guy who actually drove us around and narrated. We even got to walk into a cranberry field and pick and eat the fruit right off the vine. Yes, they grow on vines in dry, sandy soil. When it’s time to harvest they flood the fields with water then run this machine over them that shakes the berries off and then they float! Then they corral them with these floating tubes and then run them up into the trucks. The bright red cranberries against the changing trees was so pretty. SO pretty.

You can buy all sorts of cranberry related stuff in the gift shop, including fresh cranberries, cookies, caramels, and jams and jellies. We got some fresh berries, cookies (which were delicious), our traditional magnet, and some chapstick (of course). The girls were pretty good on the tour, although neither really liked eating the raw cranberries. They are a bit tart!

October 2012October 20121October 20124October 20122 October 20123October 20125 zDSC_9854We continued our tour of central Wisconsin and stopped at the Wisconsin Dairy State Cheese Company. They have dozens of varieties of cheese, all at amazingly low prices. We bought some tomato basil jack, salsa jack, and spinach artichoke jack, and of course some cheese curds. All very tasty. You can also go upstairs and look out over the cheese plant and watch them make cheese. Very cool. There was a little ice cream shop attached too, but we didn’t get any. So sad.

We had plans to go on the Point Brewery tour next but ran out of time. We did stop by and pick up a case of root beer and a variety 4-pack though. Summer loved the Orange Cream soda and said it “tickled her tongue”. Hannah wasn’t really digging it. By now though, it was after 2 pm and we got the girls up at 6:45 am to leave. They were pretty much spent. They would have been a disaster on the brewery tour….besides, we’ve been on plenty of brewery tours and once you go on one, you’ve pretty much been on them all, right?October 20126

It was such a fun little excursion, and interesting to learn a little more about our state. And one (or 3!) more things to check off our list!

1 comment:

Becky Jackson said...

Wow! I'm so jealous right now. I didn't know something like this existed so closely to where we used to live :( Makes me happy that we'll get to see new things when we visit though. Great pictures as always!