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From the orchard to the fork

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By Doug Ponder

A LaRue County orchard and farm market is living up to their mission of providing good food to good people, resulting in good experiences for everyone.

Hinton’s Orchard and Farm Market is located at 8631 Campbellsville Road in Hodgenville. During the fall season until October 31, their hours are from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sundays. They are open from mid-April until Christmas.

For the 2015 growing year, the orchard will consist of approximately 1,800 apple trees, pear trees, peach trees, flowers, herbs and vegetable plants. The orchard also has two acres of strawberries, 50 blackberry plants, four acres of cantaloupe and watermelon, 14 acres of vegetables and 12 acres of pumpkins.

The farm market at the orchard sells a large line of vegetables, produce, flowers, plants, beef and pork products, fresh baked goods, ice cream and several other gift items. The market remains open to the public from mid-April until Christmas. Hinton’s Orchard also sells products at the Hardin and LaRue County farmers’ markets as well as several other community events throughout LaRue County.

Owners Jeremy and Joanna Hinton opened the orchard and market in 2002 after they purchased what was originally known as the “Tommy Bennett Orchard.”

“I grew up on a farm here in LaRue County and I am the eighth generation farmer on my mom’s side,” Jeremy Hinton said. “When we first started out, it was just us and our family who helped us. Now we have purchased more land and grown to having several more employees.”

Since 2002, the Hintons have organized a schedule of festivals that revolve around the harvesting seasons, which include the Apple Festival on September 19 and PumpkinFest on October 10. They also have regularly scheduled tours for school groups throughout the region.

“Our festivals and tours include hayrides with a corn maze in the fall. We also have a play area called Hinton’s FarmLand, which is popular with the kids,” Jeremy Hinton said. “The school tours give students the exposure to see where an apple grows and where a pumpkin grows. If they leave knowing an apple grows on a tree instead of an apple machine at a grocery store, that is what we want to accomplish.”

Joanna Hinton said she enjoys interacting with people and teaching them about agriculture.

“Our purpose is to connect people with their food,” Joanna Hinton said. “We want to talk to customers and give them a connection to the farm and where their food comes from. It’s satisfying to grow something and be able to see your customers use it to help them feed their families.”

Hinton’s Orchard and Farm Market recently made the announcement that they are expanding the season of Hinton’s Holiday Shoppe at Three Springs Farm Greenhouse in Elizabethtown. Jeremy Hinton said they are opening the shop to include the fall season and that it opened on Monday, September 1.

“Customers can buy the same products at our Elizabethtown market as they can at the market here in LaRue County,” Jeremy Hinton said. “We have received a lot of great feedback from it. Our customers that visit Elizabethtown often or who live on the northern end of LaRue County, can now go and buy our same products at our store in Elizabethtown.”

Jeremy Hinton went on to say that providing good food and good family experiences is what he wants their business to represent.

“One of the best compliments I ever received was from a friend in college that came to the orchard during one of our festivals and said she normally didn’t feel comfortable with her kids running and playing out of her sight, but that she felt comfortable with them doing that here,” Jeremy Hinton said. “That was a big compliment to me because we want it to be a safe family oriented place for children to come and enjoy.”

For more information about Hinton’s Orchard and Farm Market visit www.hintonsorchard.com or www.facebook.com/hintonsorchard.