Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Geauga County Amish Tours

Photos by OHventures

While staying at the Red Maple Inn in Burton this summer, I took advantage of the fantastic Amish Tours that they offer! These two hour excursions take you and up to 14 others in a conversion van through the rural roadways of Geauga and Trumbull Counties, telling stories and making stops along the way. Guests of the hotel, or any member of the public, can book a tour by calling ahead (any day except Thursday or Sunday). The cost is just $25-$29, and it is definitely worth it.

While on my tour, I learned a great deal about the history of the Amish culture, and the area itself. We stopped at the home of an Amish family to have a snack on homemade zucchini muffins and have conversations about their way of life. Here, we saw chickens, horses, and kittens, as well as freshly picked vegetables, hand-powered washing machines, and handmade soaps!

We also visited a schoolhouse (school is currently out of session) and a bakery (where I bought some delicious fry pies). The tour guide was able and willing to answer all questions we had about the Amish culture. She was a wealth of knowledge of the area, and of the Amish as a whole. One factoid we learned was that Geauga County is home to the 4th largest Amish population in the world!

The tour also took us to Mesopotamia, a town just across the county line in Trumbull County. Here, we stopped at the "End of the Commons," which is Ohio's oldest general store (and probably the one with the most character)! There was SO much to see at this store, that it most certainly calls for a separate visit. Last, we stopped at the Middlefield Original Cheese Co-Op for some yummy cheese samples!

The two hours aboard the van flew right by, and soon it was time to be dropped off back at the Red Maple Inn. It was incredibly educational, and I highly recommend it to anyone visiting the area. Soon, it was time for me to check out of the hotel, with a promise to return in the near future with my friends and family! I know for certain they'd appreciate the comfort and charm of the Red Maple Inn!

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