: Andréa Johnson

Awesome Farm Experiences in Wilsonville

August 18, 2021

Editor’s note: Face coverings (ages 5 and up) are required at all indoor public spaces statewide, regardless of vaccination status. Learn more here. It’s also wildfire season — plan ahead and do your part to prevent wildfires.

If you’re looking for a break from city life, then the chance to pet miniature donkeys, enjoy a fresh-cut lavender bouquet, expand your culinary skills and eat a farm-fresh meal awaits you on Oregon’s Farmlandia Farm Loop. The self-guided loop will take you to 18 locations featuring working farms, beautiful gardens and farm-to-table cuisine in Wilsonville and West Linn, just off Interstate 5 and minutes from Portland and Salem. If you’re ready to explore farm life, make Wilsonville your basecamp for these seven fun stops.

Book an appointment to meet the miniature donkeys and other residents of Tollen Farm. Donations for the carrot fund are appreciated.

Take a Walk on the Wild Side With These Adorable Animals

A pumpkin patch and Christmas tree farm with seasonal activities for families, Frog Pond Farm now offers Farm Walkabout tours. Hop on over to explore a 5-acre portion of the 40-acre farm on foot while interacting with llamas, alpacas, donkeys, horses, piglets, chicks, an emu, camels and two baby ostriches. The family-run farm also offers a fun zone for kids featuring tunnels, slides, picnic tables, tetherball and haystacks. Frog Pond Farm is open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays for walkabout tours. Tickets are $10 per person (2 years and older) at the gate and include a cup of animal feed. 

Pastoral meets whimsical on the 4-acre Tollen Farm. Since 1979 owner Tonie Tollen has shared her passion for art and nature with the community through her menagerie of farm animals, original watercolor paintings and eclectic decor. Meander through apple and filbert orchards, pet Mediterranean miniature donkeys and Arabian horses in the pasture, and shop for home and garden treasures in the gift store. Tollen also offers interactive summer classes for kids with autism. The farm is open for tours by appointment only between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. daily. While there is no fee to tour, donations for the carrot fund are appreciated. 

Learn about cooking with seasonal ingredients at The Kitchen at Middleground Farms.

Expand Your Palate With a Locally Inspired Meal

Sharpen your culinary senses with a visit to The Kitchen at Middleground Farms. At the heart of the recreational cooking school and events center is an ethos that farm-to-table food should be approachable and centered around community. The Kitchen offers demonstration classes for the public, along with a Thursday through Saturday lineup of picnics and dinners you can reserve online for $65 to $95 per person. Meals are built around seasonal ingredients and take place in three garden settings during warm-weather months. The Kitchen also hosts a happy hour and wine pairings with an on-site sommelier. The Kitchen will accommodate any dietary restrictions.

A chic restaurant and gathering spot, Parkway Grille Bar & Restaurant, part of Wilsonville’s Hilton Garden Inn, invites you to taste the seasons with cuisine grounded in Pacific Northwest traditions combined with Mediterranean influences. Pair your dishes with world-renowned Willamette Valley wines and locally crafted beers and spirits. Chef Dolan Lane built his career during Portland’s burgeoning food movement, cultivating relationships with local farmers and producers. The restaurant is open every day for breakfast, happy hour and dinner. Try signature menu items like the three-egg omelet with summer squash, sweet peppers, tomatoes, feta cheese and breakfast potatoes, or the marinated heirloom-tomato salad with grilled flatbread. 

Farm style candles, clothing and home goods in a quiant shop
Pick up handmade rugs, candles, aprons and other boutique items at the mother-daughter-owned Graham & Tooze Farm Store.

Shop for Fresh Produce, Plants and Artisan Items at These Farm Stops

Barn Owl Nursery offers more than 100 varieties of Oregon-grown lavender plants, along with culinary and ornamental herbs. Owners Chris and Ed Mulder have seen a renewed interest in lavender farms, with gardeners wanting to create drought-tolerant gardens and bee- and pollinator-friendly spaces. The country gift shop stocks fragrant and culinary lavender products such as dried buds, bouquets, sachets, essential oils and teas throughout the year. The nursery is open by advance appointment only from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. April through July. Days and hours vary during other months of the year. Check the website for future events.

Known as the friendly farm in your backyard, the Graham & Tooze Farm Store offers locally grown and cultivated goods. Pick up farm-fresh eggs, locally grown produce and flowers, along with boutique items such as pottery, handmade rugs, candles and aprons. Mother-daughter owners Sally and Annie Bany plan to host future events in the restored barn and house. Be sure to check out the Sasquatch statue the Banys dress up for holidays and special events. The farm store is open from noon to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. 

Watch the Villebois neighborhood transform into Wilsonville’s living-room theater at the Wilsonville Farmers Market. The Thursday night event features more than 45 vendors, a summer concert series and cooking demonstrations. Peruse a wide variety of farm-fresh produce, gourmet foods, handcrafted items and food carts. The market also offers craft beer, local wine and cocktails. The market takes place from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursdays between June and September in Sofia Park.

For more farm fun, the Explore Wilsonville website offers a Farmlandia itinerary with tips and a map. 

About The

Lisa K. Anderson
Lisa K. Anderson is a writer and communications professional with a passion for storytelling and community engagement. She loves rediscovering her home state, whether she's hiking at Silver Falls State Park, stargazing at the John Day Fossil Beds or wine tasting in the Columbia Gorge.

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