Amish Acres Reopens Friday As The Barns At Nappanee

In another sign that business is on the way back in Amish and other areas, Amish Acres is reopening following re-branding as The Barns at Nappanee:

They got a small taste of business by selling about 100 take home meals Saturday for Mother’s Day.

And plan to open the restaurant at 50 percent capacity next Friday with an expanded menu with a farm-to-table theme.

The owners say they are expanding on the Amish Acres brand and adding a few twists.

They bought the licensing and still hold tours of the property including the blacksmith, one-room schoolhouse And buggy rides.

The coronavirus significantly delayed the re-opening but the owners say they don’t mind, because they’ve made use of that time to do lots of maintenance, painting and revamping of the property.

The Barns at Nappanee
Photo: Nick Deranek/News Now Warsaw

Though non-Amish often run these attractions, Amish tourism sends money into Amish pockets as well. Visitors that come for an attraction like Amish Acres may patronize Amish-owned businesses as well. Amish people also work at places like PA Dutch-themed restaurants, as servers, cooks and more.

The new owners have re-hired some of the old workers:

The owners say they’re not sure how many people they’ll be hiring once it’s fully operational, but they’ve already re-hired several employees who know and love the property because they used to work at Amish Acres.

Good luck to the new owners on their venture. I know a lot of people were sad to hear that Amish Acres was closing last year, but looks like the attraction was too good for it to just shut down.

Nappanee Water Tower

In other Amish business news, last week we saw how Amish furniture manufacturers were ready to start production back up. In Ohio that happened, officially, last Monday. From tomorrow, retail stores will be open in the state.

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    1. Jeff Hicks

      The food!

      Hope they kept the threshers meal on there. It was awesome!!!!

      1. I don’t know what exactly is/was in the thresher’s meal, but the name is great and it sounds like you don’t leave the table hungry. Hope they kept it on.

        1. Jeff Hicks

          The food!

          It was huge. Serious food coma! Sooooo good!!!!

    2. Jerry

      Open for business

      Last Friday afternoon. I ventured in upper Dauphin County in PA. All the Amish shops were open but most sell food so they are considered essential. Most shops were 50\50 on wearing masks. This past Sunday I drove by several Amish\OOM areas of Snyder and Union counties and they were having church services at both individual homes and the PPM meeting houses. That area was declared open last Friday. No mask wearing was noticed with these folks.

      1. Interesting Jerry, thanks for the report. I would expect whatever public mask-wearing compliance there is now to slide over the next weeks, especially as it gets hotter and more tiresome to put one on everyday…at least until and if people get scared again due to news of an uptick in cases which I expect will be coming later in the month.

        I would also think people in the more rural areas to be less likely to wear masks in general, since there is less of an actual threat of the virus, and less of a chance of “getting caught” by the law or community-monitoring neighbors.

    3. Tracy

      No masks

      In the Finger Lakes region of NYS we have many Amish/Mennonite run greenhouses. Sadly of four only one business was complying with the NYS mask law. Very disappointing.

      1. The law is the law, but I’m not sure it’s that big a deal in that setting, especially if the people you noticed are working outside in fresh air with plants and no one really that close to them, and especially if you’re careful and generally a properly hygienic person.

        It looks like data/expert opinion is mixed on whether masks actually help that much, or at all.

        That might be a good part of the reason why the requirements are so mixed in different states, ranging from no requirement, to recommended in certain settings, to more stringent requirements.

        But getting back to the law, this is what I found at that last link for New York:

        “Employers that are essential businesses must provide, at the employer’s expense, face coverings for employees to wear when performing work that involves direct contact with customers or members of the public.

        Any individual who is over age 2 and able to medically tolerate a face-covering shall be required to cover their nose and mouth with a mask or cloth face-covering when in a public place and unable to maintain, or when not maintaining, social distance.”

        So I would wonder if the people you observed were having direct contact with the public at the time. If I was mainly working with plants all day in warmish conditions (and especially if I were an Amishman with a thick beard), I wouldn’t be wearing a mask either, at least for that portion of the work (would probably then have one handy to put on if I had to deal with customers).

    4. kerry

      Lol, they never closed here in Holmes. They also never stopped gathering and no one wears masks here. The sheriff and health dept said they will not enforce anything. The case numbers appear extremely low in Holmes but surrounding counties have risen highly (chicken plants workers live outside of Holmes, cases are reported by residence). It’s been interesting to see these observations pop up in the last week or so and I am starting to hear and see a lot of commentary on it, both positive and negative.