2019 INSTITUTE—  Tour Options:   Thursday, December 12, 2019

Lunches for Thursday’s tours will vary by selection.  All tours go to one of three
​Smorgasbord Restaurants for dinner.  There is an optional Christmas show available for this evening.

TOUR A

Take the “Tastiest Tour in Town” at the Herr’s Snack Factory.  Their full line of products currently consists of more than 340 snack items all available in a variety of shapes, sizes and flavors.  This tour requires a lot of walking, sometimes outside between buildings. No seating areas along tour route.  Please wear flat rubber soled shoes.  This tour is handicapped accessible.  No camera or phone use during tour.  In conjunction with the snack factory tour, you will visit the waste disposal system Jim Herr created when stricter legislation and the rapidly growing factory faced a waste disposal problem.  Over 1,000 acres of farmland and 300 steers were the solution that created Herr’s Angus Farm.  Hear from the farm manager how this beef operation has evolved over the years as cattle are fed potato peelings and rejected food products.  Starch, removed from waste water before irrigating, is sold for fine paper manufacturing.  Enjoy an elegant yet simple rustic country experience at Britain Hill Vineyard, a family owned and operated winery and special events venue.  This first winery in the area combining sustainable agriculture and agri-tourism offers red, white, blush, fruit wines and serene country views.

The Li’l Country Store offers an opportunity to purchase unique gifts, handmade Amish crafts, baked and canned goods, homemade root beer, made-from-scratch wood products and many other items created and made in the local area. In addition to all the neat items to buy, you are welcome to visit the miniature horse farm with stalls crafted by the owner just for easy petting and picture taking. 

TOUR B

Visit the Mushroom Capital of the World in Chester County.  See the mushroom growing operation from beginning to end.  These growers produce a variety of high quality mushrooms including white, brown and specialty mushrooms like shiitake, oyster, royal trumpet, portabella and crimini, using state of the art technology. One farm produces over 35 million pounds of mushrooms annually.

Please note:  Driver’s license (or similar) identification is required.  Hair nets and visitor badges must be worn and jewelry removed in growing and production areas.  No smoking, drinking, eating or open toed/open back shoes are permitted in these areas.  Infants/toddler age children are not allowed in growing areas.  Picture-taking is allowed.

Hear firsthand how The Manfredi Companies have evolved from a humble farming operation and one very small refrigerated box to a growing conglomerate of 5 national companies handling all aspects of refrigerated storage and delivery for fresh fruits and vegetables across the US.  They have adapted and now service the ever changing demands of the temperature controlled food industry.  They have a full service environmentally controlled storage facility, complemented with a total logistics unit working to receive, ship, pack, track and deliver every order to their customer’s standards.

TOUR C

If you enjoy surprises, join the Best Kept Secrets Tour for a shopping, food & fun adventure.  We will make stops at diverse and unique specialty area businesses. Today you can find treasures from yesterday that will be heirlooms of tomorrow.  There will be unusual creations and unique gift items, upcycled, hand crafted pieces and amazing home décor.   Stops will be varied so there’s sure to be something everyone will enjoy visiting.  The adventure will be seeing where we go.

TOUR D  

Tour Dutchland, Inc. to see the manufacturing of engineered concrete environmental solutions. Their pre-cast structures are custom-designed to meet the specific needs of each project.  They can construct tanks as simple or complex structures, buried, partially buried or above ground, as well as, circular, rectangular or elliptical configurations.  No open toed shoes allowed.  Hard hats and ear and eye protection will be provided.  Pennsylvania has a rich railroad history that you will learn more about as we tour the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania.  With more than 100 locomotives and railroad cars on display in the 100,000 sq.ft. exhibit hall, you can discover the relevance of railroads in building our nation and the role of today’s railroads in our lives. There is an ongoing restoration program to restore engines to their original appearance.

Go from massive to miniature with a stop at the Choo Choo Barn.  From humble beginnings in the family basement, this display has grown to be gigantic in its own way with a 1,700 sq. ft. train layout featuring over 150 hand-built animated figures and vehicles and 22 operating trains.  Attention to detail and originality contribute to the success of this venue, as well as, the continuing efforts to add, update, clean, renovate and restore the display so there is something new to see every year.    

TOUR E

CNH ~ home of the New Holland Headquarters brand and global Center of Excellance for Hay and Forage ~ offers the opportunity to see the expertise of engineering, research and development, marketing and manufacturing operations come together to produce the world’s #1 hay tools.  This facility, located on 341 acres, includes a 150 acre test farm and a 700,000 square foot manufacturing plant with about 600 employees.  Children must be 12 yrs. or older.  No open toe shoes allowed.  Safety glasses will be provided for the tour which requires extensive walking. Innovation is a key word for Oregon Dairy Organics.  Learn how this facility takes excess manure from local farms and diverts material from local landfills, turning them into useful, high quality compost for home gardeners, landscapers and organic farmers.  By turning trash from local farms, schools and restaurants into a useable commodity, they are preventing polluted runoff from reaching Lancaster County’s streams.   Mt. Hope Winery offers a tour of their production facility and wine tasting in a restored barn.  Browse and shop for your favorites.

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OPTIONAL  TOUR = American Music Theatre

Enjoy American Music Theatre’s newest holiday spectacular ~ Joy To The World.  The stage transforms into a small-town winter carnival of family and friends as the AMT Singers, Dancers and Orchestra perform nostalgic favorites like “Jingle Bells,” “Let it Snow,” and “Away in a Manger.”  Inspiring music and dance mix with light-hearted holiday humor in this season’s extravaganza.  Cost:  $40/p.  Reservations MUST be made at time of registration.

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2019 INSTITUTE—  Tour Options:   Friday, December 13, 2019

Lunch for all tours on Friday will be at the farm home of Samuel and Rachel King, an Amish family in Lancaster County.   They will serve us a traditional Amish meal and Sam will share some of the Amish farming practices with us.  All buses will go directly to our dinner venue, The Country Barn, after the tours conclude.

TOUR J

CNH is home to the Headquarters of the New Holland brand and the global Center of Excellence for Hay and Forage. At this site, the expertise of engineering, research and development, marketing and manufacturing operations come together to produce the world’s number one hay tools. This campus is located on 341 acres, including a 150 acre test farm. The manufacturing facility is 700,000 square feet with about 600 employees. Children must be 12 years and older and no open toe shoes. Safety glasses will be provided for the tour. The tour will require a fair amount of walking.

Liberation {Tiny} Homes--Tiny Home on Wheels (THOW) manufacturer is located in Lancaster, PA. They sell to the entire contiguous United States. Liberation Tiny Homes creates tiny homes on wheels and custom tiny house shells. They offer two styles of homes, The Farmhouse & The Modern, with the ability to customize those homes to meet your needs. They are a team of entrepreneurs and craftsmen who have been associated with the construction industry for a combined 40+ years. We will tour the building facility and see a home from start to finish.

Lancaster Laboratories was founded by Dr. Earl H. Hess in 1961 as a 2,500-square-foot lab with three employees. Earl Hess opened the company intending to provide analytical services to area agribusinesses and industries. It has been sold several times and now the present owner Eurofins, employs approximately 2000 people at this site. Eurofin Lancaster Laboratories Environmental provides high-quality, NELAP-accredited scientific services in the environmental sciences. As the largest single-site environmental lab facility in the United States, they offer a comprehensive scope of services and technical expertise coupled with excellent regulatory compliance for an outstanding service experience. They are a world leader in environmental testing.  With a constant focus on regulatory compliance, our network of environmental laboratories performs analysis of drinking water, groundwater, seawater, soil, air and tissue using state-of-the-art analytical methods to assess their quality and impact on health and the environment. They also provide pharmaceutical testing.  We will have a walking tour of the facility and find out how this small company grew into the company it is now. Photo id required. No photos allowed

TOUR K

Visit the town of Lititz--Walking tour of one of the nations “Coolest Small Towns”. Some of the places you can visit are: Lititz Moravian church square, Julius Sturgis Pretzel Bakery, Wilbur Chocolate Museum and store, and many more specialty shops. We will also include a stop at Outback Toys where you can do some Christmas shopping or just enjoy the wide variety of farm related toys. 

Elva Hurst Chalk Talk--Elva is a self-taught artist who grew up in a large conservative Mennonite family. She had a love of art from a young age. Elva uses chalk to draw a large picture illustrating a story that is presented with pre-recorded music and narration. Her experiences of working on the family farm are often portrayed in her drawings. There is also an opportunity to visit her gift shop and buy some of her art work.

TOUR L

Experience the sights, sounds and smells of a real, working dairy farm on the Kreider Dairy Farms tour. This tour features a high-tech view of farming, including a drive down the middle of our "Cow Palace" barn and a bird's eye view of the milking carousel where we milk 1700 cows, 3 times every day. The last stop on the tour is our 100' high silo observation tower. Climb to the top for an excellent view of Kreider Farms and the surrounding Lancaster County farmland.

Binkley and Hurst is an equipment dealership in Lititz.  They have offered to open their shop doors to our group so that we can see how they assemble the planters, and other equipment before it is ready for the customer to take home.  This group will visit the Green Dragon Farmers Market, our local farmers market held every Friday. This features a hay and straw auction, small animal auction, and food vendors of every sort. You will find fresh produce, fresh meats, candies, homemade baked goods, Amish made furniture, and lots of other items you didn’t even know you might want!

TOUR M

Liberation {Tiny} Homes--Tiny Home on Wheels (THOW) manufacturer is located in Lancaster, PA. They sell to the entire contiguous United States. Liberation Tiny Homes creates tiny homes on wheels and custom tiny house shells. They offer two styles of homes, The Farmhouse & The Modern, with the ability to customize those homes to meet your needs. They are a team of entrepreneurs and craftsmen who have been associated with the construction industry for a combined 40+ years. We will tour the building facility and see a home from start to finish.

Experience the sights, sounds and smells of a real, working dairy farm on the Kreider Dairy Farms tour. This tour features a high-tech view of farming, including a drive down the middle of our "Cow Palace" barn and a bird's eye view of the milking carousel where we milk 1700 cows, 3 times every day. The last stop on the tour is our 100' high silo observation tower. Climb to the top for an excellent view of Kreider Farms and the surrounding Lancaster County farmland.

Binkley and Hurst is an equipment dealership in Lititz.  They have offered to open their shop doors to our group so that we can see how they assemble the planters, and other equipment before it is ready for the customer to take home. 

TOUR N

Visit the town of Intercourse and the Kitchen Kettle Village.  The Kitchen Kettle Village has a wide array of stores featuring anything from handmade signs, a leather shop, a pottery shop, a winery, to their flagship store which has a variety of Pennsylvania Dutch preserves, salsas, pickles, soup mixes, baked goods, chow chow, and so much more.  The Candle Shop and many more stores line the main street of town.  Intercourse is also home to Hoober Inc, an equipment dealership that sells and services Case IH, Kubota, JCB, and more.

Elva Hurst Chalk Talk--Elva is a self-taught artist who grew up in a large conservative Mennonite family. She had a love of art from a young age. Elva uses chalk to draw a large picture illustrating a story that is presented with pre-recorded music and narration. Her experiences of working on the family farm are often portrayed in her drawings. There is also an opportunity to visit her gift shop and buy some of her art work.

If time permits we will make a quick stop at the Outback Toys store where you will find many farm related toys to help you check off some items on your Christmas list. 

 

National Young Farmer Educational Association - The Association for Educating Agricultural Leaders