Eagle Mills Cider Company
Take a step back in time and enjoy some old fashioned family fun at the Eagle Mills Cider Company. You won't find noisy amusement park rides and games. Instead you'll enjoy listening to the gentle rippling of the mill stream, as you smell the fresh baked donuts and just pressed cider wafting in the cool fall air. Eagle Mills Cider Company is located in Broadalbin, about an hour or so from Albany. Take exit 12 of the Northway, then Route 67 from Ballston Spa to Route 147 and you'll meander along bucolic country roads through Galway, the smallest (and one of the oldest) incorporated villages in New York. Or follow the directions from a variety of other Capital District locations.
Once there, a a decision needs to be made - what first? Dig for dinosaur eggs, pan for gems, visit the goats at Pettigoat Junction, or fill up on those sweet smelling apple cider donuts? If you opt for the Dino Dig $4 gets a bucket and shovel which is yours to keep. My daughter and I dug in the sand until we found our five eggs, each filled with a tiny dinosaur which you can either keep or trade them in for a dinosaur related item in the gift store. Our second stop, was a quick trip to Pettigoat Junction where we bought some food (bring quarters) which we put in a tin cup and ran it up a pulley for the goats to munch while they romped around on top of their playhouse. A couple more quarters and we had handfuls of food to hand feed the four friendly little goats.
A walk though the covered bridge was our next venture. From the other side, we checked out the mill pond and took a look in the gift shop. Chairs for those with a little time to relax are set up on the banks of the quiet pond which is the home of many small fish and a couple of jumping frogs. No time for us to sit though, it was off to do some Gem Stone Mining. We purchased a good size bag of "mining rough", which looked like dirt, for $7 (there are also $4 and $10 bags). Water sloshed down from the 16 foot water tower to the 180 feet of wooden sluiceways with 14 waterfalls until it reached our section. Our sluice box was ready and the water ran through washing away the dirt. All of a sudden the rough came to life. Amethysts, rubies, fools gold galore and other gems and minerals began to shine. By the time we were finished panning we were a little messy, but, thoroughly content with our bag of real jewels!
After all this, it was time for a walk through the cider mill and time for a snack. The digging and panning had created quite an appetite. We bought a half dozen donuts and the proprietor kindly poured each of us a glass of cider. We sat on one of the picnic tables scattered throughout the grounds where we proceeded to eat too many donuts. My daughter wanted one final visit to the goats, after which it was time to head home.
Following a busy, hectic summer a visit to the Eagle Mills Cider Company is an ideal way to relax and wind down into a slower fall season. Activities are planned throughout the season including Arts & Craft Shows held on September 25 and 26 and October 2 and 3.
Attractions - Capital District places to visit, from your About.com Guide
It's Apple Picking Time - Local apple orchards, from your About.com Guide
Mineral Collecting - from About.com.
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