Nestled in the hills of Chester, New Jersey is a hidden gem called Alstede Farms. This is one of the largest farms in Morris County, New Jersey with over five-hundred acres of crop land and one-hundred fifty acres of forest land. This organic farms grows over two hundred different crops and many varieties of wild flowers. A farm market graces the front entrance of the farm. Upon entering the petting zoo is visible, along with the corn kingdom (a large corn sandbox), the pony rides, petting zoo and moon bounce. As you walk up to purchase bags for harvesting, you will see the tractor getting ready to load up another bunch of patrons to various stops along the extensive crop land.
The farm begins it’s pick your own season in spring. The strawberry fields are plentiful and there are abundant picking fields with high yields of strawberries. There are free wagons around to pull your pickings as you migrate through the fields. As June rolls in the blueberries, gooseberries, currants, raspberries and blackberries are in full bloom. As the summer months and heat begins, the peaches, peppers, tomatoes and lettuce become available. The wildflowers are available throughout June and into late fall. The fall brings an ample crop of many apple varieties. There are pumpkin fields adjacent to a large Indian corn field that adds a decorative touch to the fall decor.
There are lots of activities for families to enjoy every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from April through October. The moonbounce is a farm shaped structure for younger children to bounce, hop and laugh as they burn up some energy. The pony rides are in a quiet corral with ponies that are eager to take their passengers to the old west. The Corn Kingdom is an over-sized sandbox full of corn! The kids love this and parents love the lack of messy sand everywhere! There is a petting zoo with animals to feed and enjoy. The corn maze in fall is large and full of dead ends and fun. Finally there are lots of hay rides around the farm that are part fun and part necessity as the picking areas are so vast.
Another opportunity this farm offers to the public are the discount programs. Partner towns are given ten percent off on certain days of the week. The Highlands Harvest Club is another great opportunity for certified organic fruits and vegetables from spring through fall. The club entitles you to a half share or full share of the harvest each week. There are options to pick up or have home delivery of the food you pre-purchase. There are annual fun passes that offer families a great discount for frequent flyers.