Ice Cream Social: The Turkey Hill Experience
I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream! I’m a TOTAL ice cream fanatic. I seriously love the stuff, so when my kids had time between camp and school last month, I decided to take the trek out to Lancaster to visit the Turkey Hill Experience. This fun, engaging experience was the perfect activity for a hot summer day and was well worth the trip. We’ve also rounded up 9 delicious ice cream books to further enhance your trip.
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The Turkey Hill Experience
The Turkey Hill Experience is located in Lancaster, PA right near Dutch Wonderland, The Tanger Outlets, and Strausberg Railroad, making it a great outing for a day trip or for a long weekend getaway. We arrived around 10 a.m. in time to check in for our Taste Lab Experience and hit the bathrooms after our road trip. The scenery on the way up was beautiful, with plenty of farmland to gaze at. Our kids were thrilled to see an Amish horse and buggy on the road as well.
We started our day at the Taste Lab which you need reservations for. Be warned – you want to go into this experience hungry! We booked the first Taste Lab of the day which was perfect since it was pretty empty and strategically at snack time. The lab itself was the most interactive part of the day and set us up to understand exactly how ice cream gets made.
After a brief but fun lesson on the ice cream making process, we all got a pint – yep a full PINT – of plain vanilla yogurt to begin the ice cream making process. We chose extracts to make a base, mix-in toppings, and inclusions. The kids made the GROSSEST flavors – cotton candy ice cream, with gummy bears and peanut butter cups with chocolate fudge swirls. Literally, I almost vomited trying it but my boys love it. I opted for coffee ice-cream with cappuccino chips, peanut butter cups, and a peanut butter swirl…YUM! I ate the entire pint and basically had to be rolled out!
After the Taste Lab was over, we went upstairs to the actual Turkey Hill Experience which was a hands-on experience of how ice cream is made. The kids got to milk cows, pretend to drive the delivery truck, create their own digital ice cream, labels, and commercials, and even play in an indoor playground with a ball pit and a slide.
There was also another spot to taste actual Turkey Hill Ice Cream flavors. Each kid got 2 more scoops of ice cream each but the adults cried mercy. We simply could not fit any more ice cream in our bellies! There is a separate Tea Experience that we did not participate in. However, we did get a chance to smell teas and there was a tea tasting included in the base ticket.
The Turkey Hill Experience is located in Lancaster, PA and is open every day except for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Hours of the Experience and Taste Lab vary so be sure to get the scoop online. Parking is free and plentiful. The Turkey Hill Experience costs $9.95 for adults and $9.50 for kids aged 4-12. Kids under 4 are free. Adding on the Taste Lab or Tea Discovery does increase the cost of the tickets but even with all 3, the highest ticket price is $18.95.
Books and Fun
The kids (and adults) learned a ton about how ice cream is made from cow to grocery store shelves. Just to enhance your learning, we recommend the picture books below about ice cream before or after your trip! We’ve also included a link to a toy we ADORED in the Turkey Hill Store that was almost $15 cheaper online.
First the toy. My children insisted on getting something from the store on the way out of the store.
Because beach season was coming up, we decided to purchase this ice cream sand set – and it’s been a HUGE hit on the beach. We’ve used it every weekend since we got it and it’s kept my kids amused for hours. (Hint – it was $8 at the Turkey Hill store but retails for $13 online.)
We also looked with envy over this adorable wooden Melissa and Doug ice cream set but the store’s $60 price tag had me putting it back quickly. However, I did purchase it as a birthday present for the friends that went with us. I ordered it online for only $45.
The Little Ice Cream Truck by Margery Cuyler
“Join the little ice cream truck and its cheerful driver, Sue, as they trot all over their diverse town to deliver everyone’s favorite flavor of ice cream on a hot sunny day. With little ice cream truck’s jingly tune and pitstops at a birthday party, a park, and the zoo, this is a joyful new installment in the Little Vehicle series, which focuses on the many daily tasks of working trucks.”
Should I Share My Ice Cream by Mo Willems
“Gerald is careful. Piggie is not.
Piggie cannot help smiling. Gerald can.
Gerald worries so that Piggie does not have to.”
“Peter Sís’s delicious tongue-in-cheek vision of summer dishes up the whole scoop on everyone’s favorite frozen treat, and proves that ice cream is every bit as enriching for the mind as it is for the taste buds. Readers everywhere will be begging for seconds and thirds!”
Splat the Cat: I Scream for Ice Cream by Rob Scotton
“Splat and his class go on a field trip to an ice cream factory in this delectable I Can Read book from New York Times bestselling author-artist Rob Scotton. Splat can barely sit still during the bus ride. He’s imagining the mountain of ice cream he thinks he’ll get to eat! But when Splat gets there, that mountain becomes more of an avalanche. It’s up to Splat and his classmates to save the day!”
I Scream! Ice Cream! A Book of Wordles by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
“What do “I Scream!” and “Ice Cream!” have in common? Nothing—besides the fact that they sound the same! The ever-surprising Amy Krouse Rosenthal unleashes her prolific wit in this silly and smart book of wordplay.”
Ice Cream: The Full Scoop by Gail Gibbons
“Cool and smooth and sweet, ice cream has long been a favorite treat. It cools you off when it’s hot and is too delicious to resist even in cold weather. How did it get to be so scrumptious? Best-selling author/illustrator Gail Gibbons dishes out the latest scoop on ice cream production. Ice cream has come a long way from its humble beginnings as a mixture of snow, milk, and rice.”
The Ice Cream King by Steve Metzer
“It’s just another summer day until Teddy visits the new ice cream shop in town. Magically, he enters a kingdom of ice cream fountains, whipped cream lanes, and volcanoes that erupt with vanilla fudge! In this land of frosty treats, Teddy rules as the Ice Cream King. He can eat as much ice cream as he’d like, sail an ice cream sea, and even zoom to an ice cream moon.”
Wemberley’s Ice-Cream Star by Kevin Henkes
“One hot simmer day Wemberly finds that patience — just like a frosty treat — will go a long way.”
From Milk to Ice Cream by Bridget Heos
“Ice cream might be your favorite dessert, but do you know how it’s made? This new series explains just that. Come along on the journey as common household foods travel from farm to factory to table.”
PSST> For other bookish adventures, click here.