Families get early start on Father’s Day with butterfly fest at Homer Glen farm
By Erin Gallagher Correspondent June 14, 2014 6:40PM
Timothy and Emily Colby, of Chicago, take a break with their son Thomas on Saturday at Garden Patch Farms in Homer Glen during the butterfly festival. | Erin Gallagher/For Sun-Times Media
Updated: July 16, 2014 6:45AM
All manner of dads got a jump-start on Father’s Day on Saturday during the butterfly fest at Garden Patch Farms in Homer Glen.
Sporting headwear ranging from ballcaps to turbans, men enjoyed the gorgeous weather on the farm.
The activities were as diverse at the attendees.
About 1,500 people were expected throughout the day, co-owner Lexie Miller said. She and her brother Tony Ndoca host several family events each year.
Strawberry picking was among the most popular activities. Although many activities were free, families could go back to the strawberry field for $5 a person and buy berries they picked for $3 a pound. By 1 p.m., the fields were picked over, and picking was closed.
Scott Dansereau and Christine Tyler, of Chicago, said it was well worth the trip. They managed to find three quarts of deep-red berries.
As for the butterflies, Miller said several hundred people were on hand for the first butterfly release at 10:30 a.m. The second was at 2:30 p.m.
Emily Colby, of Chicago’s Lincoln Park community, said there were a “ton of people” for the butterflies.
She and her husband, Timothy, managed to enjoy the afternoon under a shade tree with their newborn son, Thomas, and 3-year-old son, Jamie. Timothy Colby said it was a great way to start Father’s Day weekend.
During the early morning rush, there were nearly 50 kids in line for the bounce house, farm employee Emily Stanevicius said. She stood guard, letting in only seven kids for about five minutes at a time.
Jie Zhao, from Chicago, brought her daughter Evelyn, 2. She said it was their first time feeding hens.
The farm also had goats and horses. Nikki Danis, of Orland, said she has brought her two daughters a couple of times because it is a family-friendly farm.
Ashley Caey, who works for the farm, helped kids at two painting stations. About 300 complimentary canvases had been used by lunchtime.
The farm has a garden shop that sells produce, honey, gifts and other food items.
Miller said honey that filled an entire wall was produced on the farm, along with honey on the comb.