Minnesota is apple-growing country, and there are plenty of apple orchards and farms where you can pick these delicious fruits near Minneapolis and St. Paul.
The state's apple-picking season starts in mid-to-late August and lasts until October. Apple supply varies significantly, depending on the weather, the season, and how busy the apple orchard has been. Many farms grow several varieties, including the popular Honey Crisp apples, which are usually available in stores by mid-September, and the University of Minnesota's Zestar and SweeTango varieties.
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Afton has several varieties of apples to pick and other produce such as raspberries and pumpkins. Also on-site are a corn maze, a petting zoo, tractor rides, jump pad, and baked goods for sale. Its Apple Festival is usually held during the first three weekends of October, with family-friendly entertainment and fireworks.
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A cheerful family-run orchard, this farm has lots of different apples, including the University of Minnesota's SweeTango variety. There are lots of things for children like a play area, a petting zoo, pony rides, apple cannons, jumping pillow, corn pit, cow train, zip lines, face painting, and wagon rides all week. Plus, there's entertainment and live music on the weekends.
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Emma Krumbee's Orchard features many popular fall attractions, including a petting zoo, a maze, a restaurant, and an annual scarecrow festival. You can also take a tractor ride out to the apple orchards to pick apples at your leisure, but keep in mind there is an admission charge for some attractions at the farm.
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Located about 40 minutes south of Minneapolis, Fireside Orchard grows and sells Chestnut Crabapple, SweeTango, Honeycrisp, First Kiss, KinderKrisp, and Cortland apple varieties, among others. It also has Halloween pumpkins, a rose garden, and a collection of vintage tractors to admire.Continue to 5 of 9 below.
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Like many orchards, there are more than just apples at Minnesota Harvest. It has a petting zoo, a playground, a pumpkin patch, a corn maze, horse rides, live music, seasonal entertainment, plus 25 varieties of apples to choose from. Keep in mind that it's a popular wedding destination, so some areas tend to be closed off for celebrations.
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This apple orchard is a popular destination with lots of attractions, hayrides, a playground, apple slingshot, seasonal events, and entertainment. Minnetonka Orchards charges an entrance fee, but only on the weekends, and the thrifty can save by visiting during the week. However, the farm is closed annually from January through late August, so don't try to go until apple season is in full swing.
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Whistling Well Farm is one of several orchards in the pretty St. Croix Valley. This farm is just south of Afton State Park, where you can pick your own apples from the orchard's 5,000 trees, and you can also pick pumpkins from the patch or shop for mums in the store.