Spring has sprung. It’s the season of tulips and daffodils, of open windows and going parka-free. We’ve been longing for springtime all winter, for sunshine and fresh, fragrant air. Now that it’s finally here, we at York Durham Headwaters want to remind you of why spring is so awesome. In case you forgot how to enjoy it, we’ve put together the top four reasons to love spring in YDH.
1. It’s the best time to get muddy
Mud, all over my clothes. Mud, comin’ out of my nose. Mud, oozin’ up through my toes! If you know the song Mud by country band The Road Hammers, this is the kind of mud fun we’re talking about! Keeping clean is overrated, especially if you’re getting muddy with outdoor adventures like hiking, cycling and mountain biking. Our network of trails throughout York, Durham and Headwaters have been open all winter, and now that the mounds of snow are melting, they’re leaving behind gloriously muddy patches that are lots of fun to stomp/cycle/cavort through. Grab your gummy boots or, if it’s warm enough, get an old pair of runners on and get them drenched in ooey gooey mud! And if you’re taking to the trails on your bicycle of choice, those tires aren’t fragile. Go on and get ‘em good and muddy!
For dirt-themed inspiration, check out our article: Getting Muddy on the Farm. And then get out there, get dirty, and most importantly, have fun!
2. It’s when the farm animals (and the BABIES) come out to visit
Here in YDH, we’ve got lots of rural spaces and family farms. If you know anything about farm life, then you know that springtime means… babies! Baby calves, baby sheep, baby goats, baby bunnies, baby piglets—all manner of babies are making their debuts on farms around our region, with their proud animal families venturing back out into the sunshine, eager to show their little ones off.
Go for a drive and visit our local family farms. While you are getting your fill of farm animal love, be sure to support local and shop the many on-farm retail stores and markets while you’re there. Here are a few great spots to start with:
Ontario Honey Creations – Jason the kune kune pig and his drove are pleased to welcome you to their little slice of farm heaven in Mulmur. Book your “Piggy Pile Up Experience” to reserve your spot, and cuddle up to some of the sweetest pigs around!
Pingles Farm Market – there are lots of animals at this family farm in Courtice. Visit the year-round on-farm market for delectable goodies and artisan products, and check out what new babies spring has brought to the barnyard.
Round the Bend Farm – this spring, you will find babies in the barn. Lambs and bunnies, chicks and ducklings, kids and calves. It’s cuteness overload! And don’t forget about Levi the alpaca, who loves to greet people. Seasonal fruits and vegetables, baked treats and artisan goods are waiting for you in the on-farm market at this family farm in Kettleby.
Brooks Farm – you can’t go wrong with a barnyard playland in spring. The animals at Brooks Farm in Mount Albert have been waiting all winter long to welcome you to their home. You will find miniature cows, chickens, ducks, geese, goats, sheep, pot belly pigs, racing pigs, rabbits and more. All the animals are watched carefully and lovingly by Norman the farm dog. When you’re done adoring the animals, visit the farm market bakery café for a treat and farm-fresh goods.
3. You get to connect with nature again
Oh, to be young again. We don’t mind admitting that we’re a little envious of Mother Nature. She gets to wake up and be young again once a year. Spring is when the gardens are in bloom. First come those early risers like daffodils, delphiniums and tulips, followed by magnificent peonies (among other favourite blooms). All around YDH there are gardens for you to visit in their springtime glory. Here are two of our favourites:
Parkwood Estate – this grand mansion in the heart of Oshawa preserves the home of Canadian auto baron Robert S. McLaughlin. You can tour the grounds of the estate free of charge, and enjoy the painstakingly detailed historic landscaping as it blooms again the way it has for over one hundred years. And, beginning June 1st, you’re even welcome to dine at the outdoor Tea House, located in front of the lavish water fountain… which fans of the Adam Sandler movie Billy Madison may recognize!
Museum of Dufferin – this interactive museum which strives to preserve the local history of Dufferin County features a garden and heritage orchard that you can visit. The scent of fruit tree blossoms on the fresh spring air is something you simply cannot miss.
For a cut-your-own flowers experience you’re sure to remember for years to come, check out our article April Showers Bring May Flowers.
There are great green.
4. Spring is the best of both worlds
Let’s face it. As much as we love winter, the days are short and cold. And as much as we love summer, the days can be downright hot and muggy. Spring gives us the best of both worlds. It’s warm, but not unbearably so, and we’ve got those longer days with which to get out and explore. We’ve braved the cold for the long winter months, and now it’s time to enjoy the sunshine.
The best part of spring is that the hustle and bustle of summer hasn’t quite caught up yet. This means you can get out and explore without having to contend with the summer crowds. Whether you’re into farm markets, flower gardens, outdoor adventure parks, trails, or any of our other great attractions around YDH, spring is your perfect time to get out there and enjoy life.
When you’re done with your springtime fun, why not stop in at one of our great patios for a bevvy and some nibbles? For inspiration, check out our article, Get Ready for Summer with this YDH Patio Bucket List.
Story by Katherine Ryalen