Spring is almost here! Hard to believe, right? But yes, it’s time to get out of the house and breathe in some fresh air. What better way to kick off spring than visiting a farm with real live baby animals. Your children can crack corn, collect eggs, see baby pigs, goats and sheep and even see how cheese and bread are made. Here some of our favorite farms with baby animals in NJ.
Green Meadows Farm (Hazlet, NJ)
This petting farm is open seasonally and they expect lots of newborn farm animals! Children can milk a cow, feed the animals or go on a tractor-drawn hayride. And over the summer, they even go mobile and are available for kiddie birthday parties. Call 732-335-5589 for more information.
Alstede Farms (Chester, NJ)
Alstede is a great place to bring the family year round, with their fresh produce and Christmas trees. They also offer a baby animal tour for children. A scenic hay wagon ride brings everyone to their heated barn where you will visit all the babies. Children can pet ducklings and visit baby goats, pigs, cows, lambs and more. Call 908-879-7189 for more information.
Sparta Mountain Farm (Oak Ridge, NJ)
Looking for a real hands on experience for your family? The Sparta Mountain Farm's popular rent-a-chick program allows families to rent two newly hatched chicks or ducklings for two weeks during the early spring. Kids will learn how these adorable creatures grow and how to care for them during this unique experience. In addition, the farm also offers llama treks. Participants will learn about these beautiful animals as they take part in this one hour walking tour of the farm. Call 973-800-6780 for more information.
Fosterfields Living Historical Farm (Morris, NJ)
Fosterfields Living Historical Farm functions exactly as it did at the turn of the 20th Century. This is no petting zoo, but kids can see exactly how the animals were raised in the olden days. They can watch pigs, sheep, horses, and donkeys in the fields and pens. Kids can crack corn and feed the chickens, and even go into the henhouse and collect eggs at the end of the day. Bear in mind that the animals are just a small part of the farm and kids are expected to help out with other chores such as pumping water, doing laundry and hanging it to dry, churning butter, and much more. Call 973-326-7645 for more information.
Valley Shepherd Creamery (Long Valley, NJ)
This is the place to see everything sheep. The farm offers weekend spring and summer lambing tours, starting in May, where kids can see hundreds of baby lambs. They also offer milk and cheese tours in the fall where you can learn how cheeses are made, see the milking and cheese making process and taste the cheese. Call 908-876-3200 for more information.
Bobolink Dairy (Milford, NJ)
Bobolink Dairy has moved from their old location in Vernon to Milford, but still raises grass fed cows and produces outstanding cheeses and wood-fired breads. You can sign up for Farm Tours and show your kids where the cows pasture, where the bread is made and taste the different cheeses. You can now buy their famous bread online here. Email them at firstname.lastname@example.org them with any and all of your questions and they will call you back.
Brookhollow's Barnyard (Boonton, NJ)
Brookhollow's Barnyard is a small petting farm where kids can pet farm animals such as alpaca, llama, sheep, goats, ponies, donkeys, chickens, peafowl, ducks and miniature horses. Other activities include riding pedal tractors, or kids can take a “cow train” ride. Many baby animals arrive throughout the spring and early summer. The farm even offers birthday parties and weekly summer camps for kids. Check the farm's Facebook page or call 201-400-4505 for more information.
Image: Sparta Mountain Farm
Originally published 2014