By Leah Fightmaster
Photography provided by Tom Cross
Just a short drive east,
past the malls and hustle and bustle of Cincinnati, is an area of farms
and small-town charm that is the Amish community.
Adams County lies east of Cincinnati, past Batavia and Eastgate, on
state Route 32. Amid the 100 or so households that make up the Amish
communities of the county, you can find family-owned markets including
Keim Family Market and Miller's Bakery and Furniture, and pastoral
industries, including Raber's Shoes and Saddlery and Stutzman's
Contacting the Adams County Travel
& Visitors' Bureau at (937) 544-5454 or www.adamscountytravel.org,
is a good way to plan your visit.
The bureau can send you a print guide, answer questions and make suggestions.
You can also download the guide from their website.
AMISH SCHOOL BENEFIT AUCTION
A special event this fall is the annual Wheat Ridge Amish School Benefit Auction and Supper, set for Sept. 24.
Amish schools are not supported by taxes, families pay tuition and
raise money through fundraising. The auction, held twice a year and
open to the public, includes a home-cooked Amish meal, an auction of
handmade wares and dinner. The evening ends with a community event,
during which Amish and "English" (people outside the community)
"Hundreds of people show up for this
every year, and all the proceeds go to Amish parochial schools," says
Tom Cross, executive director of the Adams County TVB. "(The Amish) are
a tight-knit community. It's pretty nice "” everyone knows everyone, and
they get along well."
3735 Wheat Ridge Road, West Union. Supper begins at 4 p.m., auction at 5 p.m.
KEIM FAMILY MARKET
highlights include Keim Family Market in Seaman. The Amish and
family-run market offers hundreds of homemade items ranging from food
to furniture. Many items are typical country jams and jellies, but
specialties also include homemade soap, yogurt-covered peanuts and
malted milk balls the size of a half dollar. You can stop to gather
goods for a picnic, buy treats for friends and family at home or browse
the numerous items that the market has to offer. It's a great idea to
bring a cooler for the food you'll be tempted to buy. 2621 Burnt Cabin
Road, Seaman. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Saturday. (937) 386-9995.BARN SALE ANTIQUES
shops are popular in Adams County. Barn Sale Antiques in West Union
specializes in materials including machinery, furniture and potbelly
stoves. Check out this store for the collector in your life, the cook,
or for some impromptu country redecorating. 817 Tater Ridge Road. Open
most days. (937) 544-8252.
PEEBLES FLOWER SHOP & ANTIQUES
antique shop specializes in more recent antiques, such as
Depression-era glassware and country items, but still has finds that
include furniture, small antiques and fresh-cut flowers for an
assortment of gifts and discoveries. 25905 state Route 41, Peebles.
Open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Saturday. (937) 587-3339.
ROOSTER'S NEST BED & BREAKFAST & ANTIQUES
combination B&B and antique shop boasts hard-to-find items, making
the store a possible treasure trove for a unique gift or decoration.
bed and breakfast has three rooms furnished with antiques, many of
which are on sale. It is located on 25 acres that include a stocked
lake and walking trails. 2658 Coon Hill Road, Winchester. Open daily or
by chance. (937) 386-3302 or (877) 386-3302, www.roostersnest.net.
JOHN T. WILSON HOME
great addition to your trip is a visit to the historical John T. Wilson
home, located in Tranquility. The brick house with a secret staircase
was built in the 1840s and owned by the Honorable John T. Wilson,
congressman and friend of President Abraham Lincoln. Wilson was a
strong abolitionist and played an important role in the Underground
Railroad in Adams County. The house is being restored. Old state Route
32, Tranquility. No phone.
HARSHAVILLE COVERED BRIDGE
it's not the only covered bridge in Adams County, the Harshaville
Covered Bridge is the only one still in use. Built around 1855, it was
used by Confederate Gen. John
Morgan and his Raiders while passing
through the county during the Civil War. Graces Run Road at state Route
1, Harshaville. Open daily. No phone.
MURPHIN RIDGE INN & RESTAURANT
dinner or an overnight stay, check out the Murphin Ridge Inn &
Restaurant, named one of 54 great inns of America by National
Geographic Traveler magazine.
Housed in a
restored 1826 farmhouse, the inn is made up of 10 rooms and nine log
cabins, open seven days a week for its B&B guests. The restaurant
is a great place for a good meal, known for using fruits and vegetables
from neighboring Amish and the inn's gardens. 750 Murphin Ridge Road,
West Union. Open for dinner 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday
for general public, open daily for B&B guests. (937) 544-2263 or
OLDE WAYSIDE INN
log cabins are your thing, then this inn is the place for you.
Constructed from logs, the Olde Wayside Inn originally served as a
tavern, built in 1804 by Gen. David Bradford, and was named Bradford's
Tavern. Gen. Andrew Jackson and Mexican Gen. Santa Anna were once
entertained at this registered Ohio historical landmark. Still in use
today, the inn offers five sleeping rooms and traditional home-cooked
meals during special events throughout the year. 222 W. Main St., West
Union. Call (937) 544-7103 for details about events and availability.
1961 soda counter allows you to take a trip (or a sip) back in time to
when saddle shoes, West Side Story and Elvis were all the rage.
Reminisce about the good ol' days while sipping on 5-cent Cokes,
nibbling on tasty sandwiches, or savoring tasty milkshakes. 206 N.
Market St., West Union. 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 1
p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. (937) 544-2451.
COUNTRYSIDE FURNITURE & MOTION CLOCKS
Specializing in furniture made from
all types of wood, Countryside Furniture & Motion Clocks is known
for its durable furniture for all places of the house.
furniture from woods including cedar, oak and hickory, Countryside
sells living room and bedroom pieces, recliners, outdoor sets and more.
But what's special about this place is the "motion clocks," which
change their shape with the hour and their melody depending on the
time. 4153 Unity Road, West Union. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through
Saturday. (937) 544-8019.
EDGE OF APPALACHIA PRESERVE
by the Cincinnati Museum Center, this 14,000-acre area is home to flora
and fauna indigenous to the Appalachian region. The western edge, which
divides Adams County from north to south, contains a series of
preserves that stretch along Cedar Creek and Ohio Brush Creek.
purchased for the preserves in 1959, this area was a playground for
privileged Cincinnatians beginning in the 1860s and has invited
scientific interest for even longer.
the seven miles of trails, which are full of woods, waterfalls,
streams, and plants and animals found nowhere else in the Midwest.
Begins just east of West Union in the town of Lynx. (937) 544-2880 or www.cincymuseum.org.
MOYER"S VINEYARDS WINERY & RESTAURANT
on the banks of the Ohio River, this winery and restaurant is the
definition of locally fermented wine. Serving family-owned and locally
made food and products for more than 25 years, Moyer's offers an array
of fine wines for the connoisseur or the casual taster. Paired with the
savory food and stellar views, this place is sure to be a recipe for
enjoyment. 3859 U.S. Route 52, Manchester. 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday
and Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. Sundays October through May. (937)
thought of snakes and crop circles sounds like something out of an
Indiana Jones movie, right? In this case, we're talking about Native
Americans, who created the largest serpent effigy in the United States.
Shaped like a snake with an egg in its mouth, the mound is aligned to
the summer and winter solstices and draws people from all over the
world. 3850 state Route 73, Peebles. (937) 587-2796 or