When it comes to animal encounters, sometimes keeping it low key at a farm is just the ticket. Whether that means feeding a horse, petting a longhorn, or becoming a beekeeper, we’ve rounded up the most fun, functional, and famed farmlands from coast to coast. Flip through the slideshow below for everything junior aggies need to know.

Time Travel – Elk River, Mn

At Oliver Kelley Farm, you can travel back to the 1860s, to be exact, to see—and participate in—how Minnesota farming was done. Thanks to a 1975 restoration and an expansion completed this year, you can tour their historic house, root cellar, and chicken house, where 19th-century Dominques and Dorkings strut. Down in the animal pens, you’ll find Berkshire hogs and Southdown sheep, also common to the era. Don’t miss their Farm Lab, where a barn, food trail, crops, and garden, are specifically designed for exploration.

Roll Up Your Sleeves

You can pump and haul water just like they did back in the day, help care for the animals, and aid in other farm chores the Kelley family began generations ago.

Oliver Kelly Farm
15788 Kelley Farm Rd.
Elk River, MN 55330
Online: mnhs.org/kelleyfarm/activities/farmstead

photo: Minnesota Historical Society

  • HarleyFarms-cc- penny via flickr
  • TractorKids - Schnepf Farms - via website
  • KidsFeedingHorses-Sun Valley Stables-via Chartlotte Stevenson
  • GirlLonghorn-Preston Trails Farm via facebook
  • FarmKids-Oliver Kelley Farm-via Minnesota Historical Society
  • GirlwithChickens via Stratford Ecological Center
  • GirlonTractor-Frying Pan Park Farm via Jennifer Massoni Pardini
  • GirlFeedsGoat-cc-Kurt Wagner via flickr
  • Queens County Corn Maze via Yabome M.K. Casper
  • TwoLlamas-cc-John Cudworth at Westpoor Park via flickr

Where do farm animals roam in your neck of the woods? Share with us in the Comments below!

—Jennifer Massoni Pardini