In celebration of 10 years in business, Hildebrand Farms Dairy is hosting its annual Harvest Festival Oct. 13 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Hildebrand family has been in the dairy business for four generations and in 2008 began processing their own product on the farm and in glass bottles.

The Harvest Festival is a chance to meet the family and the dairy herd that works so hard to make each drop of delicious Hildebrand milk.

Highlights of the free event include: a picnic lunch, live music, tours of the farm, hay rack rides, corn pit sponsored by Kansas Corn, cow bouncy house sponsored by Midwest Dairy, paint-your-own pumpkin, coloring contest, and milking demonstrations from Southwest Dairy Farmers.  The event is free and open to the public and all are encouraged to attend. 

“The last 10 years have provided our family so many priceless memories and the opportunity to meet and get to know so many people that enjoy our milk,” Melissa (Hildebrand) Reed, operations manager, said. “This year’s harvest festival is a way for us to give back to our customers who have done so much for us.”

The Hildebrand family is always looking at add new attractions or activities to their annual event. This year they have invited local vendors from across the state to participate in a farmers market during the event. 

A few products expected to be available include: coffee, locally milled flour, herbs, wine vinegars, bake goods, cheese, yogurt, honey, and fall plants. Reed said, that most vendors plan to sample their products giving visitors a chance to try before they buy. Some vendors may be cash only. 

One of the most popular attractions is the corn play area. With support from Kansas Corn the area has been expanded this year to allow more kids the opportunity to play freely. 

“The Harvest Festival is the perfect opportunity to give kids a chance to experience a day on the farm,” Reed said. “Some of our fondest memories growing up include playing on the hay bales or in a spilled pile of corn. We love seeing kids from all backgrounds having a similar experience.” 

The picnic lunch will be hosted by the JC Naz Children’s Ministry and served from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. or while supplies last. Cash or check, free-will donations assist in a revamp of the children’s play area making it fun for all ages. Local singer and songwriter Savanna Chestnut will perform during the picnic between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. 

Tours will be available every half hour starting at 10 a.m. and ending at 2:30 p.m. A member of the Hildebrand team will guide tours through the milk barn, processing plant, free-stall barn and calf barn. 

This year a wide-variety of locally grown pumpkins are available for purchase. The giant pumpkins are two for $10 or one for $6. Kids can then paint a mini pumpkin for $1. Cash is suggested for the mini pumpkin painting. 

Visitors can also sample Hildebrand Farms Dairy milks and summer sausages. Special for the festival, pumpkin spice milk and eggnog will be available. 

Farm fresh milk, soft-serve ice cream, meat and other local farm products are available for purchase. Credit cards are accepted in the farm store.

In the event of inclement weather check the farm’s Facebook page at Hildebrand Farms Dairy for updates on cancellation or postponement. 

Hildebrand Farms Dairy is a third-generation family farm located at 5210 W. Rucker Rd. in Junction City, Kan. The family has been in the dairy industry since 1930, and built an on-site processing facility in September 2008. Hildebrand Farms Dairy products are available in more than 120 locations throughout Kansas. For more information visit www.hildebrandfarmsdairy.com.

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