Southern New England Staycations: Stone Bridge Cranberry Farm in Acushnet
ACUSHNET, Mass. (WLNE) -- At Stone Bridge Farm, you can try your hand at being a cranberry farmer. They've been offering interactive tours every October for the past six years.
"What started as just five or 10 people in a week has turned into a steady stream of people for nearly the entire month of October. We get people from all over the country, different places in the world," said Joanne Harding, who owns the farm with her husband Scott.
Scott explained to me that you don't need to flood a bog to harvest cranberries. In fact, sometimes it makes more sense to dry harvest them.
"Everything for the Thanksgiving market, everything for the Christmas market is harvested now, so if there's any dampness involved, they'll spoil," said Scott Harding.
The advantage of wet harvesting--its faster. Visitors to the farm can put on waders and make their way into a flooded cranberry bog.
Once the bog is full of water, the cranberries just float to the top. Farmers use tools called "pushers" to guide the berries toward a large pump, which sucks them out of the bog.
"We actually load cranberries with this pump. It's portable. That hose detaches," said Scott Harding. "Takes about an hour to load a 40-foot tractor trailer."
From there, the berries are sold as-is, or made into all sorts of treats.
"It's just a real tradition. You can hardly think of Thanksgiving or Christmas without thinking about cranberries, at least not in my family," said Scott Harding.
Stone Bridge Farm is open for tours through October 27th.
For more information on tours and other events at the farm, click here.
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