Adams County offers pleasant view of Ohio

Published 12:00 am Sunday, October 7, 2012

My weather request for next weekend (Oct. 12, 13 and 14) has already been filed with Zeus, the Greek god of the sky.

His temper reportedly affects the weather and when unhappy he’s been known to hurl thunderbolts and turn the skies into walls of rain so I’m asking for a small favor.

I do not think I’m being unreasonable in asking for brilliant blue autumn skies temperatures in the 70s with zero chance of precipitation.

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The Travel Prof is planning on dropping the top for a road trip over to Ohio’s Adams and Brown counties. Fall foliage, winding country roads and the Wheat Ridge Old Fashioned Herb Festival along with Winchester’s Appalachian Mountain Artisans Fest are the main draws.

Although the name may have a familiar ring to a now defunct herb fest the four year old Wheat Ridge Festival continues to bring a tradition of herbs, crafts, and natural products to a location familiar to all, the Wheat Ridge Amish Community.

“An event like this portrays a positive and true image of what Adams County really is,” said event organizer and local antique dealer, Herb Erwin, who along with his wife Kim decided to bring a festival to their farm on Tater Ridge Road near the Wheat Ridge community.

“Everything is handmade, crafted or locally grown,” he said. “This is a craft and antique show; you will not find any mass produced oversea items that you find at many flea markets.”

Since its start the festival has grown and this year promises to deliver close to 150 vendors of quality natural earth creations, artisans, craftspeople, and herbal products, in an autumn atmosphere set among the rolling pastoral hills in Adams County’s Amish country.

According to Erwin the vendor return factor is close to 90 percent so this statistic alone speaks for the quality of the event.

In keeping with the natural and local flavor of previous events, “We’re here to showcase natural products that are created by local artisans and craftspeople,” Herb pointed out.

The nearby Amish community is heavily involved in the festival with one Amish family cooking up a batch of original Pennsylvania Dutch pretzels from scratch, while another family will be making fresh apple cider on the spot from apples grown locally.

The Amish community schools, which are self supporting, will be setting up a cafeteria under a tent serving lunch and cooking their famous pies on site with proceeds benefiting the local Amish schools.

Homemade ice cream, bake goods, and lemonade are also special Amish treats festival goers can tempt their taste buds with.

Of course a host of Amish furnishings, herbal, plant, and garden boxes, plus special quilt purses are just a sampling of some of the Amish goods on display.

Other venders include an array of herbal specialist, growers, and creators featuring herbal teas, butter, soaps, aloe lotions, lavenders, and other herbal and earth products.

The Ohio Brush Creek Herb Guild will be serving up portions of their popular and tasty herbal soup at the fair. Additional food highlights are fresh Lake Erie perch dinners, locally grown Buffalo burgers and pulled pork sliders.

Metal smiths will have a place at the fair with yard art, fountains, and other unusual if not interesting metal products. A number of wood crafters creating everything from chain saw art to bird houses to walking sticks and furniture will be present.

Quilters, sewer’s, knitters, weavers, pottery, honey and natural food product vendors will be displaying along with the usual fresh produce that only comes straight from the farm.

Special classes and demonstrations featuring shrubbery trimming, medicinal teas, natural art, and cooking with herbal food and spices will also be featured at this event.

Antiques, garden supplies, old farm equipment, historical reenactments, plenty of food, live entertainment and folk music promises to round out this three day festival down on the farm in Adams County.

If you really want to maximize your Amish experience plan on attending on Friday or Saturday as Sunday is their day of worship. The Amish crafters and cooks will not be on site that day. They will be tending to more important matters.

The festival is held at rain or shine at Grindstone Farm, 817 Tater Ridge Road, West Union OH 45693. Admission is free but there is a $5 per car/van load parking fee. Additional information can be found at

If you’ve got some time and exploration energy left continue your journey west from Tater Ridge on US 32 and you’ll discover Winchester’s Appalachian Mountain Artisans Fest.

This event is also touted as a family oriented educational outdoor festival for all ages. There will be over 100 artisan booths of crafts, jewelry, antiques, soaps, everlastings, plants, furniture, quilts and more on display.

Live music is provided by Steve Free, Rabbit Hash Band, The Liberty Band and West Union Steel Band. Classes are scheduled to you teach the art of flower arranging, how to make a gathering basket, how to make a soup wreath and more.

All parking donations and auction proceeds go to benefit Alzheimer’s& Parkinson’s Associations. Visit for more information.

On a local note be sure to stop by the Ironton City Building on Saturday Oct. 13 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. as area crafters will be displaying their wares. Admission is free and light refreshments will be available.


Got travel? E-mail Steve Call at the or dial 740.550.9540.