RENSSELAER FALLS – Steven L. and Gayle M. Fobare have turned their dream of an apple orchard into an apple-lovers paradise at their 180 Johnson Road home.
Since 2009, the couple has been working to supply the north country with quality locally grown organic fruit from their U-Pick orchard, Fobares Fruits.
This year, they have expanded the orchard to include a gift shop, playground, country market, and bakery.
Mr. Fobare, a dairy farmer for 20 years before getting into the construction and asphalt business, and Mrs. Fobare, a 25-year food service employee at St. Lawrence University, Canton, said they dreamed of opening a place where families could build memories.
Gayle and I enjoy making people happy and we enjoy farming, this seemed like a great way to combine those two things, Mr. Fobare said.
The apples average at about 80 cents per pound, with bushels ranging around $12 to $26 depending on the type of apple.
Thats cheaper than youd get in most stores, Mr. Fobare said. Were trying to offer a high-quality product at a very fair price. We know, with times being hard and grocery prices higher than ever, people need a break somewhere.
This year the orchard has grown 2,500 bushels of fruit, including 12 varieties of apples. Macintosh, ginger gold, early gold, Macintosh and honey crisp are just a few of the varities offered at Fobares. There are several varieties of grapes and berries and peaches to pick, too.
Their pumpkin patch is one of the biggest in the north country, with an estimated 10,000 pumpkins. Decorative gourds, Indian corn, corn stalk and four different kinds of squash are available for purchase.
There will be hayrides through the orchard, so folks can will get a chance to see it all, Mr. Fobare said.
Fobares Farm Market offers jams, jellies, cheeses, maple syrup products, honey products, several variteies of jerky, cider doughnuts, cinnamon rolls, apple pies, apple bread, and apple crisp,
We want to be a one-stop shop for hunters headed to camp this fall, Mr. Fobare said.
The Fort Applewood Playground includes swings, teepees, and a 32-by-70 foot kangaroo jump pillow, one of 800 in the world.
The gift shop offers baked goods and country crafts made by local artisans.
Were hoping to keep everything open until Christmas time, so people get their baked goods for the holidays, Mr. Fobare said.
Those interested in scheduling a party or gathering or to check on the availability of apples should call the Fobares at 344-1207 or 528-0052.