HILLSDALE, N.J. — Parents juggling bags of freshly-picked apples and tired children poured off of hayrides and made their way down to Demarest Farms’ big, red barn, where pumpkins, ice cream and doughnuts awaited this weekend.
The Weirimus Road establishment offers 14 varieties of pick-your-own apples every weekend through November.
Spending a day at Demarest Farms marks the beginning of fall for families like the Servidios, of Lyndhurst, who arrived at 11 a.m. on Saturday and left just before the grounds closed at half-past 4.
“We always apple-pick and pumpkin-pick,” said Alana Servidio, after loading her car with several bags of hand-picked produce.
The Servidio's family tradition was a personal competition for 8-year-old Robert Servidio, whose objective was to climb the trees and reach the untouched apples at the tops.
Ridgewood resident Richard Haggerstine waited with his 11-month-old son, James, for his wife to return with the farm’s homemade cinnamon sugar doughnuts — a top priority for the first-time customers.
“We haven’t had the full experience yet,” said Stephanie Haggerstine, as Richard seemingly inhaled his first doughnut.
Borough resident and Pennsylvania State University student Jess McCarter was home for the weekend with several peers to raise money for THON — the university's student-run philanthropy that benefits children and families impacted by pediatric cancer — at Demarest Farms and some surrounding communities.
The philanthropy donates more than $13 million each year to the the Four Diamonds Fund at Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital
The students raised more than $5,000 this weekend, and they said locals were happy to help.
"It was so wonderful how generous the community of Hillsdale truly is," said Penn State sophomore Tyler Staffin, who began "canning" at the farm around 6 a.m.
"The people were all lovely and so supportive of our mission." CLICK HERE to donate to THON
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