IMG 3077When the leaves begin to turn, many from southeast Michigan flock to the Dexter Cider Mill. Located on the Huron River in Dexter, Mich., the mill is the oldest continuously operating cider mill in the state.

Old Fashioned Cider
Using locally grown and hand-picked apples, they make cider the same way it was made 120 years ago – by pressing the apples with an oak rack. Each batch of cider uses 3-5 varieties of apples, giving it an authentic and fresh taste. In fact, if you get there at the right time you can watch them fill jugs with the freshly pressed cider and sometimes even see the press in action.
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A Fall Family Day
We recently visited the cider mill on a weekday afternoon, when crowds are usually a little smaller. Although we intended on only picking up a gallon of cider, the smell of fresh doughnuts was too hard to resist. We took our apple doughnuts to the back of the mill, where we could enjoy the sight and sound of the Huron River. The scenery, along with the cider and doughnuts, made for a perfect fall outing for the family. We might have stayed longer if it hadn’t been for the bees swarming nearby, no doubt also enjoying the apple peels and scraps that had been discarded behind the building.

Getting There
The Dexter Cider Mill is a short and scenic drive from Ann Arbor and is located just off Huron River Drive, a popular biking route. Hours vary and are subject to change; call (734) 426-8531 or visit their website before going.

Teresa J. Shaw covers Southeast Michigan for Traveling Mom. Visit her blog and follow her on Twitter at @TeresaShaw