April 24, 2024
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Discover Shelburne Farms: A Vermont Gem and Farm Attraction in Beautiful New England

The Inn at Shelburne Farms VT

Shelburne Farms is a picturesque destination in Vermont, offering a unique and immersive farm experience. It is renowned for its beauty, historical significance, and commitment to sustainability. With its stunning landscapes, working farm, educational programs, and charming accommodations, Shelburne Farms is a must-visit for travelers looking to explore the beauty and vitality of Vermont’s heritage.

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Important points to consider:

  • Shelburne Farms is a picturesque farm attraction in Vermont.
  • It offers a unique and immersive farm experience.
  • The farm has gained recognition for its beauty, historical significance, and commitment to sustainability.
  • Shelburne Farms features stunning landscapes, a working farm, educational programs, and charming accommodations.
  • Visiting Shelburne Farms provides an opportunity to explore the beauty and vitality of Vermont’s heritage.

A Vermont Working Farm with Historical Roots

Founded by the Webb Family in 1886

The Webb family, William Seward Webb and Lila Vanderbilt Webb found Shelburne Farms in 1886. Originally, the farm was an ornamental estate designed to impress visitors with its beauty. However, over time, it underwent a transformative change and grew into a working farm with a focus on sustainable agriculture and education. Today, it stands as a testament to the farm’s historical roots and commitment to preserving Vermont’s agricultural heritage.

The Transformation from an Ornamental Estate to a Working Farm

Initially, the Webb family designed Shelburne Farms as an ornamental estate to showcase their grandeur and opulence. The meticulous landscapes, extravagant architecture, and manicured gardens were a testament to their wealth and social standing. However, recognizing the potential to contribute to Vermont’s agricultural heritage and promote sustainable practices, the Webb family made the bold decision to transform the estate into a working farm.

With a steadfast commitment to sustainability, education, and responsible land stewardship, Shelburne Farms now operates as a thriving working farm. Its focus on organic and regenerative farming techniques, conservation efforts, and community engagement has made it a model for sustainable agriculture and a respected institution in the state of Vermont.

By embracing its history while embracing the future, Shelburne Farms has beautifully combined the ornamental roots of its past with the practicality and significance of a working farm. This transformation has allowed the farm to have a lasting impact on the community, showcasing the power of sustainable agriculture and the importance of preserving Vermont’s rich agricultural heritage.

National Historic Landmark and Architectural Grandeur

Shelburne Farms is not only a working farm but also a National Historic Landmark. The farm’s architectural grandeur is a testament to the collaboration between architect Robertson and landscape architect Olmsted. Their combined vision and expertise resulted in a stunning landscape that seamlessly blends nature and man-made structures.

The farm’s historical and architectural significance has gained widespread recognition, leading to its inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places. This prestigious designation highlights Shelburne Farms’ importance in preserving Vermont’s heritage and showcases its unique architectural features and rich history.

Shelburne Farms Vermont: Embracing Sustainable Agriculture

Shelburne Farms actively embraces sustainable agriculture practices. The farm follows sustainable farming methods, promotes soil health, and implements conservation practices. They prioritize organic and regenerative farming techniques to minimize their environmental impact and ensure the long-term sustainability of the land. Visitors to Shelburne Farms can witness firsthand the importance and benefits of sustainable agriculture.

The Charm of the Children’s Farmyard

The Children’s Farmyard at Shelburne Farms is a charming and educational experience for young visitors. It offers interactive learning opportunities with a variety of farm animals, allowing children to connect with agriculture and nature. They can pet and feed animals, learn about farm life, and gain a better understanding of where their food comes from. The Children’s Farmyard sparks curiosity and inspire children to appreciate the natural world.

Interactive Learning with Farm Animals

At the Children’s Farmyard, children can engage in interactive learning with farm animals. They can pet and interact with friendly cows, sheep, goats, pigs, and chickens, among other animals. This hands-on experience allows children to develop a deeper understanding of different farm animals, their behaviors, and their role in agriculture. It also teaches them empathy and respect for animals.

Connecting Children with Agriculture and Nature

The Children’s Farmyard aims to connect children with agriculture and nature in a fun and engaging way. Through interactive activities, children learn about farming, the role of farmers in producing food, and the impact of agriculture on the environment. They also learn about the natural cycles and processes that occur on a farm, fostering a greater appreciation for the beauty and diversity of nature.

Benefits of the Children’s Farmyard
Interactive learning experience
Opportunity to pet and feed farm animals
Hands-on understanding of where food comes from
Develops empathy and respect for animals
Connects children with the importance of agriculture
Enhances appreciation for nature

From Cows to Cheddar: The Cheese Making Tradition

Shelburne Farms upholds a longstanding cheese making tradition, steeped in expertise and passion. This award-winning farm takes visitors on a delightful farmstead cheddar experience, offering an opportunity to witness the captivating journey from milk to cheese. The farm’s cheese production process exemplifies the artistry and commitment to quality that has made Shelburne Farms renowned. From the cows that generously provide the milk to the meticulous aging process, visitors can immerse themselves in the fascinating world of cheese making and savor the delectable flavors of Shelburne Farms’ signature cheddar cheese.

An Award-Winning Farmstead Cheddar Experience

At Shelburne Farms, visitors can embark on an exceptional award-winning farmstead cheddar experience. The farm’s dedication to craftsmanship and quality has garnered numerous accolades, making their cheddar cheese a beloved favorite among cheese enthusiasts. Immerse yourself in the heritage and artisanal craftsmanship as you sample the esteemed flavors of Shelburne Farms’ award-winning farmstead cheddar.

Witnessing the Journey from Milk to Cheese

One highlight of a visit to Shelburne Farms is witnessing the captivating journey from milk to cheese. Delve into the intricacies of the cheese-making process as you observe and learn about every step along the way. From the initial milking process to the transformation of milk into curds, and finally, to the refining and aging stages, each step is a testament to the mastery and dedication of the cheese makers. Gain a newfound appreciation for the art and science of cheese making as you witness the fascinating transformation before your eyes.

Cows to Cheddar: The Cheese Making Process
MilkingCollecting fresh milk from the farm’s cows.
Curd FormationTransforming milk into curds through controlled bacterial fermentation.
Curd CuttingCutting the curds to release whey and create the desired texture.
Draining and PressingRemoving excess whey and pressing the curds into cheese molds.
AgingAllowing the cheese to age, developing unique flavors and textures over time.

Walking Trails and Natural Splendor Across the Grounds

Inn at Shelburne Farms Autumn Sky

Shelburne Farms boasts a network of walking trails that meander through its expansive grounds, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the natural splendor of the farm. The trails offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes, including Lake Champlain. Whether it’s a leisurely stroll or a more challenging hike, the walking trails at Shelburne Farms provide a tranquil and captivating outdoor experience for nature lovers of all ages.

Trail NameDescriptionDifficulty Level
Maple Wood TrailPasses through a maple wood forest, offering shade and vibrant fall foliage viewsEasy
Pond Loop TrailCircles around a picturesque pond, home to various wildlife and waterfowlModerate
Lake Champlain Overlook TrailLeads to a scenic overlook with panoramic views of Lake Champlain and the Adirondack MountainsDifficult
Wildflower Meadow TrailWinds through a vibrant wildflower meadow, showcasing a diverse array of plant speciesEasy

Year-Round Educational Programs and Workshops

Shelburne Farms dedicates itself to providing year-round educational programs and workshops that focus on sustainability and environmental stewardship. These programs inspire and educate visitors about the importance of sustainable farming practices, conservation efforts, and the connection between agriculture and the natural world.

Education for Sustainability at the Farm’s Heart

At Shelburne Farms, education for sustainability lies at the core of their mission. Through engaging and interactive programs, visitors can learn about the farm’s commitment to environmental stewardship and explore innovative farming techniques that prioritize conservation and resiliency.

Sessions on Foraging, Conservation, and Farming Techniques

Visitors can take part in a variety of sessions and workshops that cover a wide range of topics related to sustainable agriculture. These sessions may include hands-on activities, such as foraging for wild edibles, learning about conservation practices, and discovering farming techniques that promote soil health and biodiversity.

ProgramDescription
Foraging WorkshopLearn how to identify wild edible plants and the sustainable practices of foraging.
Conservation TalkExplore the importance of conservation efforts and their impact on the local ecosystem.
Sustainable Farming TechniquesGain insights into organic and regenerative farming methods that prioritize environmental sustainability.

The Inn at Shelburne Farms: A Place to Stay and Dine

The Inn at Shelburne Farms VT

The Inn at Shelburne Farms offers elegant accommodations with historic significance. Visitors can stay in beautifully appointed rooms that exude charm and character. The inn also features a restaurant that offers seasonal farm-to-table dining, showcasing the farm’s fresh and sustainable ingredients. Guests can enjoy delicious meals while taking in panoramic views of Lake Champlain, creating a truly memorable dining experience.

Elegant Accommodations with Historic Significance and Maybe a Ghost or Two

The Inn at Shelburne Farms provides guests with a unique opportunity to stay in accommodations that blend elegance and history. The beautifully appointed rooms offer a warm and inviting atmosphere, combining modern amenities with classic design elements. Each room tells a story and reflects the historic significance of Shelburne Farms, creating a memorable and enriching experience for guests.

There is also a local rumor about ghosts and hauntings at the inn which is not acknowledged by the staff, yet some guests have reported strange activities.

SaleBestseller No. 1
Haunted Vermont
Haunted Vermont
Used Book in Good Condition; D'Agostino, Thomas (Author); English (Publication Language); 160 Pages – 05/28/2011 (Publication Date) – Schiffer Publishing (Publisher)
$12.46
Bestseller No. 2
Vermont Haunted History: Vermont Ghost Stories, Folklore, Myths, Curses and Legends (The Vermonter Series)
Vermont Haunted History: Vermont Ghost Stories, Folklore, Myths, Curses and Legends (The Vermonter Series)
Alexander, William M. (Author); English (Publication Language); 74 Pages – 08/26/2018 (Publication Date) – Independently published (Publisher)
$12.99 Amazon Prime
Bestseller No. 3
Haunted Vermont: Ghosts and Strange Phenomena of the Green Mountain State (Haunted Series)
Haunted Vermont: Ghosts and Strange Phenomena of the Green Mountain State (Haunted Series)
New; Mint Condition; Dispatch same day for order received before 12 noon; Guaranteed packaging
$10.95 Amazon Prime
SaleBestseller No. 4
Haunted Inns and Ghostly Getaways of Vermont (Haunted America)
Haunted Inns and Ghostly Getaways of Vermont (Haunted America)
Lewis, Thea (Author); English (Publication Language); 128 Pages – 08/26/2014 (Publication Date) – The History Press (Publisher)
$14.24 Amazon Prime
SaleBestseller No. 5
A Haunted Ghost Tour in Vermont: A Funny, Not-So-Spooky Halloween Picture Book for Boys and Girls 3-7
A Haunted Ghost Tour in Vermont: A Funny, Not-So-Spooky Halloween Picture Book for Boys and Girls 3-7
Hardcover Book; Martin, Louise (Author); English (Publication Language); 40 Pages – 08/01/2023 (Publication Date) – Hometown World (Publisher)
$3.57 Amazon Prime
SaleBestseller No. 6
Haunted Burlington: Spirits of Vermont's Queen City (Haunted America)
Haunted Burlington: Spirits of Vermont's Queen City (Haunted America)
Lewis, Thea (Author); English (Publication Language); 96 Pages – 09/25/2009 (Publication Date) – The History Press (Publisher)
$18.43 Amazon Prime
Bestseller No. 7
Haunted Places in Vermont: Paranormal Investigation in Vermont Log Book for Local Backyard Ghost Hunters And Mystery Lovers, Record All your Paranormal Gifts For Adults, Teens, Kids
Haunted Places in Vermont: Paranormal Investigation in Vermont Log Book for Local Backyard Ghost Hunters And Mystery Lovers, Record All your Paranormal Gifts For Adults, Teens, Kids
Publication, Raate Press (Author); English (Publication Language); 120 Pages – 07/31/2022 (Publication Date) – Independently published (Publisher)
$8.99 Amazon Prime
Bestseller No. 8
Vermont Ghost Experience
Vermont Ghost Experience
Citro, Joseph A (Author); English (Publication Language); 124 Pages – 05/30/2021 (Publication Date) – Eerie Lights Publishing (Publisher)
$14.95 Amazon Prime

Seasonal Farm-to-Table Dining Overlooking Lake Champlain

At the Inn’s restaurant, guests can indulge in seasonal farm-to-table dining. Guests at the Inn’s restaurant can indulge in seasonal farm-to-table dining, where the chefs meticulously craft each dish using ingredients sourced directly from Shelburne Farms to ensure freshness and quality. The menu highlights the flavors of the season, allowing guests to savor the bounty of Vermont’s agricultural offerings. With its picturesque location overlooking Lake Champlain, the dining experience at the Inn truly delights the senses.

AccommodationsDiningViews
Elegant rooms with historic charmSeasonal farm-to-table diningPanoramic views of Lake Champlain
Modern amenities and comfortsFresh and sustainable ingredientsBreathtaking natural landscapes
Rich in history and characterDelicious and artfully presented dishesAwe-inspiring beauty

The Farm Store and Artisanal Products

Shelburne Farms offers visitors the opportunity to explore their Farm Store, where they can discover and purchase a wide selection of artisanal products. The Farm Store showcases the farm’s commitment to sustainability by featuring locally sourced and crafted items that highlight the region’s rich agricultural heritage.

One highlight of the Farm Store is the renowned farmstead cheddar cheese produced on-site at Shelburne Farms. They craft the farmstead cheddar cheese with care and expertise, using the milk from their own herd of cows, resulting in a rich flavor that delights visitors.

Besides their delicious cheese, the Farm Store also offers other culinary delights such as maple syrup, baked goods, and locally produced pantry staples. Visitors can bring home a taste of Shelburne Farms and support local producers and artisans by purchasing these unique and high-quality products.

The Brick House: Shelburne Farms' Historic Centerpiece

The stately Brick House which is located within the Shelburne Farms property, served as the Vermont residence for the establishment's founders, Electra Havemeyer Webb and her husband James Watson Webb. Though public access is limited, visitors can glimpse this architectural treasure during select special events and an annual open house day.

Shelburne Farms Brick House

Originally a modest 1840s farmhouse, the Webbs transformed the Brick House into a 40-room colonial revival masterwork after receiving it as a wedding present in 1913. They commissioned the renowned New York firm Cross & Cross for the architectural redesign and hired landscape architect Ellen Biddle Shipman to craft the picturesque gardens and grounds affording stunning lake vistas.

The Brick House at Shelburne Farms

As Electra Webb's collection of American decorative arts expanded, the Brick House's interiors functioned as an experimental gallery space. She arranged rooms harmonizing furniture, folk art, textiles and more in the stylized exhibitions that previewed her grander vision for Shelburne Museum.

Many of these objects and room settings were eventually relocated to the museum's village displays after its founding in 1947. However, other collections remain in situ at the Brick House, allowing visitors to experience Webb's creative combination of early Americana much as she originally envisioned.

The Brick House dining room. The Brick House became the Webbs' beloved family home and entertainment venue until their passing in 1960.

Shelburne Farms Brick House

Events and Community Participation

Shelburne Farms is a hub of activity, hosting a range of events throughout the year. From seasonal festivals to workshops and family-friendly events, there is always something happening at the farm. These events provide opportunities for visitors and the community to come together, learn, and celebrate the farm’s mission of sustainability and education.

Host to Seasonal Festivals, Workshops, and Family-Friendly Events

As mentioned above, Shelburne Farms organizes a variety of seasonal festivals, workshops, and family-fun events that cater to diverse interests and age groups. Whether it’s a harvest festival celebrating the bountiful produce of the farm, a workshop on sustainable gardening practices, or a fun-filled event for families to enjoy, there’s something for everyone to take part in and enjoy. Also, the fantastic Shelburne Museum is nearby as is the Vermont Teddy Bear Company.

Inviting Community Engagement and Support through Volunteering

Shelburne Farms believes in community engagement and invites individuals to contribute to the farm’s success through volunteering. Volunteering opportunities range from assisting with farm chores to helping at events and educational programs. By volunteering, individuals not only have the chance to give back to their community, but also gain valuable skills and knowledge about sustainable agriculture and farm operations.

Volunteers play a vital role in maintaining the farm’s beauty and vitality while creating a sense of belonging within the community. They help spread awareness about the farm’s mission and inspire others to get involved in supporting sustainable practices and education. Through volunteering, individuals become an essential part of Shelburne Farms’ larger effort to foster a strong and engaged community.

Shelburne Farms offers many options for individuals to get involved and connect with their community, whether by attending events or volunteering. These opportunities allow visitors and locals alike to celebrate Vermont’s heritage, learn about sustainable agriculture, and make a positive impact on the farm and the surrounding area.

EventDescription
Harvest FestivalA lively celebration of the season’s harvest with activities for all ages, including pumpkin carving, hayrides, and farm-fresh food tastings.
Sustainable Gardening WorkshopAn informative workshop that teaches participants about organic gardening techniques, soil health, and sustainable practices for home gardens.
Family Farm DayA fun-filled day of interactive farm experiences, including animal encounters, hay bale mazes, and hands-on educational activities for children and families.
Volunteer Work DayA chance for individuals to get hands-on with farm chores and projects, contributing to the daily operations and maintenance of Shelburne Farms.
Farm-to-Table DinnerAn exquisite dining experience that showcases the farm’s fresh and seasonal ingredients, prepared by renowned local chefs.

Conclusion

Shelburne Farms will leave a lasting impression on all who visit. Its stunning landscapes, rich history, commitment to sustainability, and educational programs provide a unique and memorable experience. From the moment you arrive, you’ll be captivated by the beauty and vitality that permeates every aspect of this Vermont gem.

A visit to Shelburne Farms is more than just a journey; it’s a testament to the agricultural heritage that Vermont holds dear. The farm’s commitment to preserving and showcasing the state’s traditions is clear in every detail. Whether you’re a traveler seeking adventure or a local looking to reconnect with your roots, Shelburne Farms offers an experience that will deepen your appreciation for Vermont’s beauty and vitality.

Step onto the farm’s enchanting grounds and immerse yourself in a world where sustainability, education, and natural splendor converge. Explore the working farm, interact with farm animals, and witness the art and science of cheese making. Take a walk along the scenic trails and soak in the breathtaking views. Engage in educational programs and workshops that foster a deeper understanding of sustainable agriculture and conservation practices. Indulge in farm-to-table dining at the Inn, savoring seasonal dishes crafted from the farm’s bountiful produce.

At Shelburne Farms, every visit is an opportunity to connect with the essence of Vermont’s agricultural traditions and leave with cherished memories. It’s a place that will inspire you to embrace sustainability, celebrate nature’s beauty, and honor the heritage that defines this remarkable state.

Sale
Shelburne Farms: House, Gardens, Farm, and Barns
Shelburne Farms: House, Gardens, Farm, and Barns
Hardcover Book; Suokko, Glenn (Author); English (Publication Language); 288 Pages – 03/21/2017 (Publication Date) – Rizzoli (Publisher)
$50.69 Amazon Prime
Cooking with Shelburne Farms: Food and Stories from Vermont
Cooking with Shelburne Farms: Food and Stories from Vermont
Used Book in Good Condition; Hardcover Book; Shelburne Farms (Author); English (Publication Language)
$41.24 Amazon Prime
History of Shelburne Farms: A Changing Landscape, an Evolving Vision
History of Shelburne Farms: A Changing Landscape, an Evolving Vision
Hardcover Book; Donnis, Erica Huyler (Author); English (Publication Language); 343 Pages – 01/01/2010 (Publication Date) – Vermont Historical Society (Publisher)
$45.91
Sale
The House at Shelburne Farms: The Story of One of America's Great Country Estates
The House at Shelburne Farms: The Story of One of America's Great Country Estates
Hardcover Book; Sherman, Joe (Author); English (Publication Language); 101 Pages – 01/01/1992 (Publication Date) – Paul s Eriksson (Publisher)
$13.98

FAQ 

Q: What attractions can travelers look forward to at Shelburne Farms in 2024?

A: Travelers visiting Shelburne Farms can explore a wide range of attractions including the historic farm barn, the breathtaking shores of Lake Champlain, the exquisite Shelburne Museum, and a multitude of educational tours offering transformative learning experiences. Whether you’re a solo traveler, couple, or visiting with family, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Q: I’ve heard Shelburne Farms is a nonprofit organization. What does that mean for visitors?

A: As a nonprofit, Shelburne Farms focuses on sustainability, education, and conservation. For visitors, this means they can engage in enriched experiences that offer opportunities to learn about environmental stewardship, sustainable agriculture, and the importance of community involvement. Your visits and donations directly support their mission of cultivating a healthy future for people and the planet.

Q: I’m planning a trip with kids. What activities does Shelburne Farms offer for young learners?

A: Shelburne Farms is a paradise for young learners, offering a hands-on approach to learning for a sustainable future. Kids will love visiting the dairy where they can meet the farm’s famous Brown Swiss cows, exploring the children’s farm barn, enjoying tractor rides, and running around the sprawling gardens. It’s also an ideal spot for picnics, making it perfect for a family day out.

Q: Can visitors buy fresh farm produce or other goods at Shelburne Farms?

A: Absolutely! Visitors can purchase a variety of farm-produced goods at the Welcome Center and the farm’s on-site bakery. The Welcome Center and the farm’s on-site bakery offer a variety of farm-produced goods, including fresh dairy products like their renowned raw milk cheese, bakery goods, and fresh veggies, most of which are produced right on the farm. It’s also a great place to find unique gifts, with all purchases supporting the farm’s nonprofit mission.

Q: Are there opportunities for travelers to explore the natural beauty of the area?

A: Yes! Come and visit Shelburne Farms, a scenic jewel situated on the shores of Lake Champlain in Shelburne, VT. They invite guests to explore the trails, wander through the gardens, and enjoy the breathtaking scenery of this historic landmark estate. It’s also worth taking a picnic to enjoy along the lakefront or in one of the scenic garden spots.

Q: What should first-time visitors not miss during their visit in 2024?

A: First-time visitors should take a guided tour of the estate which provides valuable insights into the history and the Frederick Law designed landscape. Don’t miss the chance to visit the dairy, enjoy a tasting of their award-winning cheeses, and if time allows, take part in one of their educational programs. A stop at the bakery for some freshly baked goods is also worth the effort!

Q: How do Shelburne Farms contribute to the local community and environment?

A: Shelburne Farms plays a significant role in the local community and environment through its dedication to environmentally sustainable practices and education. The farm operates with the goal of serving as a model for using agriculture to heal the land. They offer transformative education programs to teach people of all ages about sustainability and environmental stewardship. As a nonprofit, they rely on donations and volunteer efforts to continue their mission and offer transformative learning experiences.

Q: Is there a specific time of year that’s best to visit Shelburne Farms?

A: Shelburne Farms is spectacular throughout the year, but many find the fall to be magical when the New England foliage is at its peak. Summer is also a fantastic time to visit for those looking to enjoy the full range of outdoor activities, from garden tours to lakefront picnics. However, the farm has attractions and programs that make it worth the trip at any time of the year.

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