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Queens County Farm Museum
Nearby Subway Stops
E, F at Kew Gardens-Union Tpke.
E, F to Kew Gardens-Union Tpke., then take the Q46 bus to Little Neck Pkwy.
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Dirty, stinky, and quite proud of it, the seven acres of the Queens County Farm Museum pay homage to Floral Park's rich, 300-year agricultural history. The farm itself was established in the 1690s while its red-shingled Dutch colonial farmhouse dates back to 1772. Its original 18th century kitchen still stands, with cast iron pots, a butter churner and other replica furnishings built by the live-in caretaker, who can often be found tinkering in his wood shop or tending the fields of corn, lettuce, or grape vines out back. (A wood burning stove and other gadgetry added in 1865 offer a glimpse at rural life from yet another era.) Outside, amid planting fields, a fruit orchard, and animal pens, you'll notice a slew of hand-washing stations alongside the education building and a series of barns. You'll need them. A corral of hungry goats and a pasture full of sheep just beyond the barns eagerly await the family-heavy weekend crowds carrying cups of feed purchased from the gift shop. Pigs, rabbits, ducks, ponies, a henhouse full of Rhode Island Reds, and the farm's mascot, Franny, a Brown Swiss cow, also call this museum home. During the week, the farm's adjacent petting zoo is overrun with school groups. Purchased by the state in 1927, the farm catered to an entirely different audience until the 1960s: residents of the nearby Creedmoor Psychiatric Center, who worked the land as part of their therapy.Farm Fresh
Fresh eggs, honey, and seasonal produce are available in the glass-framed greenhouse complex which doubles as the gift shop. A one-acre vineyard on the farm currently grows Merlot, Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes, which the museum hopes to bottle in the near future.
Guided tours of the farmhouse on weekends are free; Guided tours of the petting zoo cost $9. School groups or other large parties are welcome, but reservations are required and certain fees may apply.
Grazing livestock and a Dutch farmhouse set the scene for a country-style celebration on a 47-acre estate, and the grounds offer myriad options. Weddings can be held in the reception room of the museum’s two-story 1930s-era barn ($1,600 for four hours, up to 120 guests). For big parties (up to 1,000), the apple orchard is available for rent, which runs $2,000 (six hours for the event, plus two days to set up and clean). There’s also a smaller pavilion space, which seats 85 and is often used for ceremonies. It can be rented on its own ($800 for four hours) or in addition to the others ($500).