October’s Magical History Tour takes us to picturesque Grobe Fruit Farm in Elyria, a half-hour drive west on I-90. Covid-19 precautions include regular sanitation of surfaces, and both employees and customers are asked to wear a mask.
To some here in northeast Ohio, fall doesn’t officially begin until October, when a fat orange pumpkin is sitting on the front porch. In my case, that pumpkin comes from Grobe Fruit Farm, where the big pile of pumpkins around the black walnut tree in front of the farmhouse have been a family tradition since I was a child. For the Grobe family and their employees, fall begins at the beginning of September, with the harvesting of apples and making cider.
Fall on the farm has come to members of the Grobe family since 1905, when the then-potato and -dairy farm was purchased by Henry Grobe due to the soil quality. While the house was present at the time of purchase, the following century saw a variety of improvements and expansions: the apple orchard was added in the '20s and expanded in the '40s; the market was built in 1950 and the apple packing house in 1969; a commercial cider mill was added in 2007; and expansions to the packing house were made in 1999 and 2010.