Whidbey and Camano Islands are filled with small family farms. Some have been owned by the same family for more than 100 years and others are owned by young families just starting out on a great adventure.
And, even though these are working farms with real deadlines and all the other pressures of running a business, they’re pretty proud of what they do, and some are willing to take the time to share that pride with visitors.
In addition, there are some other farm experiences that can help you home in on the agricultural “vibe” of the islands.
Here are five ways you can dip your toes into island farm life.
EXPERIENCE #1 - Farm Tours
Time permitting, several farms will offer free tours.
- Kristoferson Farm | Camano Island – With a brand-new roadside stand, u-pick lavender grove and a two-day island-wide fall festival, what could make this farm more visitor friendly? Oh yeah, zip-lining through the farm’s forest! https://kristofersonfarm.com/
- Anada Farm | Camano Island – Open for visitors Saturday 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Tour the farm and meet the animals. There’s also a kids day camp and yoga on the farm. https://anandafarms.com/
- Camano Island Honey at Sanctuary Farms | Camano Island – Offering bee classes as well as organic honey, and more. https://camanoislandhoney.com/
- Glendale Shepherd Farms | Whidbey Island - You’ll find award-winning cheeses here and meet the sheep that produce them. Visit the farm store Friday – Sunday between 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Check with the staff for a possible tour, or email in advance. https://www.glendaleshepherd.com/farm-visits
Families ride the trolley into the Pumpkin Patch
- Sherman Pioneer Farm | Whidbey Island – Among the area’s oldest, this farm opens for pumpkin-picking each October and features a trolley ride to the field. https://www.facebook.com/SPFProduce/
- Bell’s Farm | Whidbey Island - The well-stocked farm stand is always a great source of fresh things to eat. The farm is also a photographer favorite. https://www.bells-farm.com/
- Organic Farm School | Whidbey Island – Each year a new group of students learn everything from soil to the business end of things. Contact the farm ahead of time for a tour. Yes, they accept new students each year. https://organicfarmschool.org/farm-stand
- Spoiled Dog Winery | Whidbey Island – This photogenic vineyard is a great spot for picnics! Of course, there is always wine tasting with wine available for purchase. https://www.spoileddogwinery.com/
Fall Farm Festivals!
September is Eat Local Month
Whidbey Island Grown will be featuring many ways throughout the month that islanders and tourists can connect with local food, agriculture, and businesses. It’s a great way to showcase local food at a time when it’s abundant and enjoy the (usually) nice fall weather with outdoor eating and events.
The Langley Harvest Festival | October 1 - 3
The Harvest Festival is part celebration of fall and part shared learning experience. Starting with a free dance at the fairgrounds, the weekend will include kids games, local food, beverages, and crafts for sale. There were also be classes!
Giant Pumpkin Weigh-Off | October 2
It's time to see who grew the biggest pumpkin around! 10:00 a.m. - Kristoferson Farm
Experience # 2 - Farm Stands
In addition to the stands mentioned above, many other farms have stands. Some of them include:
- Island Harvest Farm | Camano Island – Visit Website
- Dugualla Bay Farms | Whidbey Island – Visit Website
- Case Farm – Whidbey Island | Visit Website
- Mutiny Bay Blues | Whidbey Island – See website… https://mutinybayblues.com/
- Orchard Kitchen Farm Stand | Whidbey Island – Visit Website
There are many more. Check here for a more complete list.
A perfect day for shopping at the Bayview Farmers Market
EXPERIENCE #3 - Farmers Markets
Held mostly, but not always, on weekends, farmers markets offer all kinds of fresh goodies. There are veggies, of course, but also fresh bread, flowers, and often food trucks are there, too!
Be sure to talk to the farmers at the stands. You’ll learn a lot about veggies, cooking, and the region!
- Camano Farmers Market - Visit their website.
- Langley Street Market - Visit their website.
- Bayview Farmers Market - Visit their website.
- Coupeville Farmers Market - Visit their website.
EXPERIENCE #4 - Farm to Table Dinners
While COVID-19 has curtailed many dinners, the fact that most are held either outdoors or in huge barns has allowed some to still be held. In addition, this is a great thing to look for next year!
Orchard Kitchen | Whidbey Island - https://www.orchardkitchen.com/
Kristoferson Farm | Camano Island - https://kristofersonfarm.com/
Anada Farm | Camano Island - https://anandafarms.com/
Weekly bounty from Whidbey Island Grown
EXPERIENCE #5 - Whidbey Island Grown Cooperative
Are you visiting Whidbey Island on a Friday afternoon? Whether you’re coming here for a few days or want a taste of Whidbey Island to take home, this is for you!
Experience the freshest goodies the island has to offer in one stop! Order online by 9 p.m. on Tuesday and pick up on Friday. No membership or subscription required. Pick-up in Oak Harbor, Coupeville, or Freeland. Check here for an ever-changing catalog of meat, seafood, and vegetables!