In 2010, Stuart retired from teaching and is now able to spend a little more time at the farm in a more relaxed state knowing he doesn't have to run back for a tennis match or hockey game. They started the farm with just strawberries, but over the years have added blueberries, apples, sour cherries and even a few lingonberries and haskaps.
When asked about the community he farms in along the Great River Road, Stuart said, "I feel fortunate to be in the community of Grand Rapids and the surrounding small towns. The people in northern MN understand and appreciate the work that goes into farming in our part of the state...Their kind words of gratitude and support have kept me going when Mother Nature has sometimes put rumble strips in my path. Our farm is located just SE of Grand Rapids on the Great River Road. Over the many years that I’ve traveled that road I’ve come to appreciate the colors of the trees in both spring and fall plus the scenic country views you won’t find on a freeway. As I write this, fall is fast approaching. It’s almost apple time at the farm. I hope you’ll take a weekend ride up the Great River Road and come visit us."
Apple time is on, so to take Stuart up on the invite to visit:
1) Visit our Grand Rapids itinerary, including a stop at the Lavaliers'
2) Call the Lavaliers' hotline for hours and picking conditions -(218-327-9199)
3) Get driving directions to the farm from their Minnesota Grown directory listing
More wonderful Minnesota apple producers can be found in the Minnesota Grown directory!