Monday, August 3, 2015

Cagles Family Farm - Ag-Venture Tour Review

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Cagles Family Farm is a family operated farm located in Canton, GA. Since 1936 this farm has been in operation and was a working dairy farm up until 1995. Though it is no longer a dairy farm, it still maintains a herd of dairy cows and a variety of farm animals. Present day Cagles is now used primarily as an agri-tourism venue for family fun and education. Their motto is "Every urban child should learn that their food, including milk, is produced on a farm and not just a product of the local grocery store." 

A moms review:
Escape the city hustle and bustle for some good ole' country fun. Cagles offers many great activities for families and groups. At Cagles you can get lost in the huge corn maze, visit a pumpkin patch, take a hayride, watch the herding dogs work, take a walk through a scary haunted barn and see where milk really comes from. There is so much to do down on the Cagles Family Farm.

The kids and I took an Ag-Venture tour at Cagles Family Farm. We met our tour guides Cathy and Oak (a border collie) outside of the red brick ranch house, which is where you also pay. While we waited the kids had fun playing on a very large antique scale located outside of the house. They also got to pet a few of the other border collies that were out and about. From there our guide led  us through the "Cow Subway". The kids found the large steal tunnel going under the road fascinating. And of course they couldn't resist yelling to hear their echos. We moseyed our way into the museum barn where our guide told us about the Cagles Family Farm history and their transition from a Dairy Farm to an Agricultural Farm. There are lots of cool things to see in the museum like old tractors, tools, milk jugs, antique typewriter and more. 

Next came the highlight of our day. Our guide led us to an open barn where there was several animals including the two cutest baby cows. She explained to us that they were Holstein Cows and that they supply the majority of our milk. She then bottle fed one of the cows which got lots of awww's from the kids and adults. She briefly explained some of the other animals that were in the barn and gave each of the kids some special leaves to feed the animals. In addition to the cows there was also a pig, turkeys, white ducks and a few chickens. My daughter was fascinated by the cows who loved to lick your hand when you rub their noses. And my son was fond of the pig who loves to be scratched and will even roll over on his side just like a dog when you do. I had to practically drag my kids away from the animals when it was time to move on. I really liked that above each animal they had a sign with some great educational facts which I could read to the kids. On our way to the next area the kids got to see and pet some of the BIG cows. The guide provided each child and adult with some hand sanitizer as well before moving on.

Next we visited Miss. Rosie's Parlor for a milking demonstration. But where was Rosie? The guide opened the barn door and had us yell, "come on out Rosie." We had to do it a couple of times and then she came running out and right into the milking stall. The guide explained to us that Rosie was a Jersey cow and that she was a little different than Holstein cows. The kids noticed that she was solid brown and didn't have spots. The guide joked with the kids and said her brown color didn't mean that she produced chocolate milk...but that she did give richer, creamier milk that is used in ice cream, cheeses, etc. I think YUMMY was the response from all the kids. The guide also explained how they milked cows in the olden days and how cows are milked today. Then she hooked Rosie up to the milking machine and we got to watch the milk shoot through the tubes. The kids even got to put their hands on the milker tubes to feel how the suction feels to a cow. My kids said it felt just like a vacuum cleaner. Guess what else? Rosie is expecting a baby!

Next it was time to board the hayride. Our driver had some trouble starting the tractor but after we all yelled Yee-Haw it surprisingly started right up. We took a tour of the farm grounds and stopped in a large field by a lake to view a sheep herding demonstration. Oak our border collie guide did the demonstration. Oak is currently being trained and had to be on a long rope lead but he did a great job of following his commands and getting the sheep back to their pen. 

We ended our tour which took about a little over an hour by visiting the goats. Another favorite part for my kids. Each child and adult received a handful of feed. There were goats of all colors shapes and sizes. My kids could have stayed there all day petting and feeding the adorable goats. 

But wait.....on our way back to the car we stopped for a little fun on the Jumpee Pillow. WHEEE! 

My daughter (age 6) whose dreams of owning a farm when she is a grown up said she "had the best day ever." And after her first visit to a real working farm she is even more determined to be a farmer. But she is still very adamant that her husband will have to clean up the poop.

Extra details:
  • Wear proper footwear like sneakers or boots. This is a working farm.
  • During the summer months the concession stands are not open so make sure you pack a lunch, snacks and beverages.
  • If your susceptible to headaches from certain smells I suggest sitting at the middle or back of the hayride so you don't get a headache from the tractor fumes. 
  • Pavilions and nice shade trees are available to eat under.
  • Ag-Venture tours are only offered on the 2nd and 4th Saturday at 10 am during the Summer months. However if you have a group trip you would like to plan they offer those by request during the week.
  • Outdoor Bathrooms and hand washing facilities are available. They are very clean and not porta potties.
  • The walking part of the tour is handicap and stroller accessible.
  • There is a dirt parking lot with ample parking.
  • They accept credit cards and cash.
  • Sign up for the email list to get valuable coupons. Also check out websites like Groupon which offer special offers from time to time.

Cagle's Family Farm
355 Stringer Rd.
Canton, GA 30115

Links to follow:
-Cagle's Family Farm Website
-Cagle's Family Farm Facebook

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