Fun on the farm at Fair Oaks Farms

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Between Chicago and Indianapolis, just off Interstate 65 is home to one of the leading agri-tourism destinations in the world, Fair Oaks Farms.

Fair oaksWyatt BechtelFair Oaks Farms is a leading agri-tourism destination in the United States and the world. Fair Oaks Farms is located in Fair Oaks, Ind., and has been doing farm tours of its dairies since 2004. The original land was purchased in the late 1990s and the farm has since grown into a 27,000-acre farm encompassing 11 dairies with 32,000 cows.

Just this past year a pork operation was added that also host tours. The Pig Adventure houses 2,700 sows that can be seen from the second floor via many different glass viewing areas. In all, the farm is expected to produce between 80,000 and 90,000 piglets per year.

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Getting that live view of animals and being able to do an array of other activities has attracted a lot of visitors over the years, says Jamie Mitchell the Adventure Center manager at Fair Oaks Farms.

“Annually for all of our facilities including our café, our adventures, we see about 400,000 visitors each year,” relates Mitchell. “The heart of the experience includes two bus tours, one going out to our working dairy farm and another going out to our Pig Adventure.”

Visitors can view cows and sows giving birth at both facilities, while also having the chance to ask questions about animal agriculture practices.

“It’s absolutely incredible, people leave here with big smiles, and jaws open like they can’t believe what they just saw,” says Mitchell.

She adds that many school tours come to the farm from urban areas where students may have never seen a live farm animal.

“It’s really a great place to work, to show people where there food comes from,” concludes Mitchell.

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illinois  |  August, 30, 2013 at 06:25 PM

400,000 visitors at $5.00 per visitor is not a bad sideline business. Not only that but the other items that are retailed and sold. I have visited twice and it is first class. But what else would anyone expect because the principal behind all of Fair Oaks activities Mike Mcclosky is a shrewd dude. Putting to good use his advertising dollars that benefit him and the entire industry. Using size as a leveraging tool to recieve as much as $2.00 bucks per cwt over blend so less sofiticated CO-OPS can have control of his production to keep him from raiding markets. In the end of another relationship Fair Oaks recieved a transportation company to deliver their product to wherever after a less than sophistcated CO-OP parted ways.

A. Klopfenstein    
Indiana  |  October, 02, 2013 at 08:43 AM

I believe the price is $20.00 per person! As a small dairy producer that is being put out of business because of the state support they get and taking over the markets we are not impressed with the adventure there. It takes away the work and sweat that the average dairy farmer puts into the industry. Yes we have been there and came away with a bad taste for our average dairy farmer and their future as a family dairy farm.

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