Apple picking season has arrived and this farm is kicking it off with new safety rules

HILLSDALE, New Jersey -- Demarest Farms, in Hillsdale, New Jersey, is kicking off apple picking season very differently this time around.

"We've been in business since 1886 and we're used to changing and adapting, but this year has been like starting a new business from day one all over again," said Jason DeGise, co-owner of Demarest Farms.

The farm, which has evolved with the times, is popular for its fresh farm produce and baked goods in addition to their pick-your-own peach, apple, and pumpkin farms.

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DeGise and his business partner James Spollen, who began working at Demarest Farms as teenagers and now own the farm, have managed to successfully adapt their business to function in times of a pandemic.

"We have put down a reservation system. You make a reservation on our website, drive down to the orchard, wash your hands at a hand-washing location, and then you're going to go out and enjoy 20-acres of apples," DeGise said.

In addition to all of their safety measures, Demarest Farms has also extended the apple picking days to Thursday through Sunday to allow more families to safely enjoy this popular fall season tradition.

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For those who wish to opt-out from apple picking, they can shop at the store and choose from their 14 different types of home-grown apples as well as apple cider donuts, fresh-pressed apple cider, and other produce.

"We're just ready for the fall! We love the fall here at the farm. We had a wonderful peach picking season. People listened and enjoyed themselves while looking to continue to create memories for generations to come," said DeGise.
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