In 1965 Hawken Askelson, decided to plant a few apple trees as a hobby at his farm near Waterman, Illinois. He had retired from farming, but still had a strong desire to be involved in agriculture at some level. He decided that planting a few apple trees to provide fruit for the family would be a great idea. His wife Edna agreed just because she thought it would keep him busy. He got a little carried away, however, and planted more trees than he had family.
Within a few years, the trees that Hawken Askelson had planted were producing more apples than his family could possibly use. Not being ones to let anything go to waste, the Askelsons decided to set up shop in their garage and sell apples in grocery bags to friends and neighbors. That was all the incentive that Askelson needed to turn his hobby into a business. He planted more trees and by 1977 was growing enough apples to buy a cider press and officially open up for business. That year, his son-in-law and daughter, Steve and Kathy Bock joined their parents in the business.
Honey Hill Orchard is a family-owned and operated orchard that was started as a hobby in 1965. Today, the original orchard location has 2,100 apple trees, with an additional 500 trees at a second farm location. What started out as a simple farm stand has grown to include pick your own apples, raspberries and pumpkins, a busy bakery, the Apple Barn Country Store and family activities.
During the season, Waterman Lions Club will be at the orchard again serving up some of their delicious pork chop sandwiches. Also, you won’t want to miss the DeKalb County Cattlemen’s Association’s FAMOUS steak sandwiches. They do a great job of grilling up some of that delicious DeKalb County beef. Both dates will be announced soon.
Through the years, one thing has remained constant, and that is their commitment to their customers. In addition to providing customers with quality products, Honey Hill Orchard gives families a chance to spend time on the farm and create some great family memories and traditions. Honey Hill Orchard is now open with early season hours of Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays from 9am to 1pm. They have a great crop of red raspberries for picking, Paula Red apples and fresh picked Michigan peaches in the barn. Stop in for some tasty fall treats! Honey Hill Orchard is located at 11747 Waterman Rd. in Waterman, IL 60556. Visit their website now to learn more!