After two months of planning and weeks of painting, the Orchard is pleased to announce the completion of the “Props Project for Kids.” Keith Moir from Penland School of Craft translated black and white images into vibrant, kid-friendly, plywood props that are installed around the Orchard. Kids have already begun to poke their heads through holes or windows and become those icons of Orchard life, past and present—apple, honey bee, Monarch butterfly (a favorite) and caterpillar, Clinchfield Railroad engine, tractor, and banjo player. “It’s an expressive way to connect our young visitors to the land and to the ecosystem that is the glue of it all,” said executive director, Beth Hilton. “Part of our mission is to educate people about the Orchard lands. And for kids, that means fun activities. If they complete the scavenger hunt and bring their sheets back to the barn, they’ll receive a bag of fun activities that will engage them and help them appreciate what the Orchard means—its apples, pollinators, its history. We thank Penland for their generous collaborative spirit and dedication to the arts in all its forms.” All the props are within close walking distance to the red barn. The scavenger coloring sheet that can be picked up inside, gives directions to each.
The Orchard is located at 1025 Orchard Road near Spruce Pine at mm 328.3 on the Blue Ridge Parkway and is a not-for-profit, 501(c)(3), working orchard, heritage, and educational venue. Hours are 10 AM to 5 PM, open Wednesday-Sunday. Family- and pet-friendly. Wheelchair accessible. For information, please visit altapassorchard.org or call 828-765-9531.