Updated for 2018
Tacoma and South Puget Sound Area Apple Picking and Apple Cider Making Events
The kids are back in school and the mornings are getting crisp! If you’re looking to celebrate fall with apple fun, we’re here to help! The bad news is there are very few spots to go apple picking in the South Sound (or even very close), but there are several South Sound area apple events full of old fashioned fun and a few options for actual picking.
We’ve also linked to other options farther afield (Get it)? Read on for the whole round up! Note that this post is specific to apple events; I have another round up of harvest festivals that will be updated soon!
I decided to put this in the apple post since they’re offering cider squeezing! This one is hosted by Green Play Cooperative school on Saturday, September 22nd, and the public is invited. Other favorite activities include: eco face-painting, s’mores around the fire pit, free organic soups, free harvest muffins and baked goods, caramel apples, forest play and nature-crafting, strolling musicians, farm animals for snuggling, storytelling in the meadow, and more! A 15.00/family donation is suggested.
Meeker Mansion hosts their annual Cider Squeeze on Saturday, October 13th, 10:00am-4:00pm. Squeeze apples for some fresh cider, pick out a carving pumpkin, visit a favorite vendor, or munch on apple treats from the snack shack.
Wild Hare Organic Farm Puyallup/Tacoma
Last year, Wild Hare did an event just for CSA subscribers. I don’t see anything announced yet, but you may want to check in with them if you’re looking for tours for your preschool or homeschool group. They do also have organic produce available for purchase year round!
Steilacoom Historical Museum Association hosts their annual Apple Squeeze on Sunday, October 7th. Make fresh squeezed cider and purchase apple treats. Last year’s event included apple trees for sale and an apple expert on hand to answer questions, along with children’s activities, pony rides, and more. If you’re new to the area, this is a lovely town, with an old-fashioned charm.
Lattin’s hosts a month long Apple Festival, beginning the last weekend of September and running through the last weekend of October. Plenty of apples on hand for sampling, and last year they had very low prices if you want to buy some to take home for munching. There are also animals to pet and lots of apple treats for sale. There has been a 5.00/car parking fee in the past; I haven’t confirmed that for this year yet. We have a more detailed review of this spot coming soon!
If you want to actually Pick apples, the Curran Orchard in University Place is where to go. Their annual apple squeeze event has past, but you can still pick apples. Here is the scoop from their fb page. Thanks to Kelly, who shared this with the V253Recommends group-a must-join for Tacoma area parents. Do note that you cannot pick from trees that have been, “Adopted.” If you want a sure thing next year, you may want to adopt a tree yourself!
The Pierce County Gleaning Project sends volunteers to pick crops that would otherwise go to waste. They are donated to area food banks, and volunteers usually get to keep some as well! I don’t know a whole lot of details about this program, but I sure think it’s cool. You can check it out and register as a gleaner. Do note that spots often go fast! If you have your own crops going to waste, you can also get in touch with them!
Beyond the South Sound
With the exception of the options mentioned above, if you want to have the kiddos pick lots of apples right off the tree, you’re going to have to find a generous neighbor (try finding your local Buy Nothing group on Facebook), or take a road trip. The closest options are found north, in Skagit County. To really multiply your options, you can head east over the mountains. Lauren of NWTripFinder has some fun spots in both areas. Btw, if you’re here via NWTripFinder, welcome! Our specialty is South Sound adventures, and we’d love to have you come back again!
There will also be lots of farm festivals and pumpkin patch fun in the weeks to come. Look for our updated guides to those soon. If you can’t wait, check out this fun post: