Orange County, North Carolina is 3½ hours from the coast and 3½ hours from the mountains. Residents enjoy proximity to Chapel Hill, Durham, Raleigh and the Research Triangle and can avail themselves of any number of cultural, employment, entertainment, and shopping and sporting opportunities throughout the region. As they say: Location! Location! Location!
The finest and freshest locally grown produce, prepared foods, flowers and crafts are available at area farmer’s markets in Chapel Hill and Orange County. Everything sold is grown or produced by the vendors, all within a 50-mile radius. Special events include tastings, cooking demonstrations, music and Master Gardeners’ educational fairs. Touted as one of the finest local markets in the Country, the Carrboro Farmers’ Market has provided an opportunity for local farmers to sell their products directly to the consumer since 1979. Additionally, markets can be found in Southern Village, at University Mall and in Hillsborough. Find more fresh food and fun in this Guide
In central, southwestern Orange County, you’ll come across Maple View Farm. Owned and operated by a 5th generation dairy farmer who relocated here from Maine, the dairy produces delicious hormone-free milk and ice cream. These treats can be bought in Maple View’s own shops and in grocery stores throughout the Triangle. Maple View Agricultural Educational Center down the road strives to educate visitors about the benefits of sustainable agriculture and farm life.
All in all, Orange County has well over 600 working farms creating products that can be purchased on-site, at stores throughout the region or at local farmers markets. Add in the good number of businesses supporting the agricultural way of life and you’ll quickly see we’re invested in being close to the earth.
Founded in 1752, Orange County has played important roles in state and national history. In pre-Revolutionary War days, Hillsborough was one home to the Regulators, a band of men and women who fought against British oppression, helping to usher in the country’s fight for independence. Orange county is home to the first public university in the nation, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. And for centuries before this, Orange County was a site for at least three successive Native American villages.
The Annual Piedmont Farm Tour is the largest consumer farm tour in the United States! Typically, the tour featured 40 farms, including two vineyards throughout the region. Families, gardeners, students and children can sample first-of-the-season strawberries, pick your own eggs and learn how to grow safe organic vegetables with small scale intensive methods. Held at the end of April, the two day event attracts hundreds of visitors from across the region. Typical event hours are from 1 pm– 5 pm both days.
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