Featured Activity: Visit a Winery or Vineyard
When you think of visiting wineries and vineyards you might not immediately consider it to be a family-friendly activity, but most wineries welcome all including kids, both human and canine! Visiting a winery can be a great way to get outside, enjoy your family or fur-kids, and support a local business.
Where to find a Local Winery or Vineyard
If you don’t live in California, don’t worry. Though that may be the most popular place for wineries in the US, nearly every state has its own local vineyards. We have visited wineries all over including in Virginia, Oklahoma, and Massachusetts.
Here are some Happyly-approved wineries to get you started. Search your location on the app to find more! If we haven’t visited any in your area yet, a quick Google search should help you out. Most wineries are dog-friendly, at least in the outdoor areas, but call ahead to make sure.
- Georgia - Fainting Goat Vineyard and Winery
- Florida - Lakeridge Winery
- Kentucky - Talon Winery
- Maryland - Rocklands Farm Winery
- Massachusetts - Cape Cod Winery
- Minnesota - Dancing Dragonfly Winery
- New York - Weed Orchards and Winery
- North Carolina - Treehouse Vineyards
- Oregon - King’s Raven Winery
- Tennessee - Arrington Vineyards
- Virginia - King Family Vineyards
- Washington, DC - The Winery at Bull Run
What to do at a Winery
Drink wine, of course!
Ok, this one might be obvious. But trying and buying wines at small vineyards is a great way to support your local economy and small businesses. You might find a new favorite, or at least have fun trying. Tastings are a great way to sample a little of everything. And some places offer fun cheese or chocolate pairings with your tasting. You might even find some fun drinks like fruit wines, sangria or frozé (a rosé slushie!).
Tour or explore the vineyard, winery, caves, etc
Lots of wineries have tours and it’s a fun way to learn about how the grapes are grown and harvested and how the wine is made. You might even get to check out some neat caves and cellars. If they don’t have guided tours, wander out into the vineyards (if allowed) and check out the grapes yourself. Kiddos will love running up and down the rows and peeking at the growing fruit.
Check out live music or other entertainment
Check a winery's website or social media to see if they have a calendar of events. Lots of places have live music or host festivals or other events. We've even been to a winery where you can watch a polo match (King Family Vineyards listed above under Virginia)! A perfect way to spend a beautiful weekend afternoon.
Lots of wineries we have visited have board games and/or yard games available to keep people entertained while they sip. Think corn hole and horseshoes, Jenga and Connect Four. The games are great for keeping kids entertained while the adults chat, or for getting families off their phones and doing something fun together.
Pack a picnic, visit a food truck, or grab a charcuterie board
Even if you don’t like wine, most vineyards have beautiful scenery— rolling hills, rows of grapevines, and charming architecture. They’re the perfect place for an outdoor picnic or meal. Lots of wineries have food available. You might find a full-on gourmet restaurant or specialty food like wood-fired pizza. Many wineries we have visited don’t have their own kitchen but have a rotating arsenal of food trucks visiting daily. Lots offer snacks and charcuterie.
And nearly all wineries, regardless of whether or not they serve their own food, let you bring your own picnic or snacks. Many wine towns have cute artisanal food markets so you can stop and pick up something yummy on the way! If you aren't into wine but want to picnic at a winery, be sure to buy a bottle for a friend or neighbor so you're still supporting their business.
Whether or not you like or drink wine, a local vineyard can be a great place to spend the day outside with your whole family!
Have you and your family visited a winery or vineyard? If you visit one, tag us in it on Instagram @gethappyly for a chance to be featured!
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