New York has its highly touted wine trails. Numerous states have barn quilt trails. And there are trails of all sorts – horse, hiking, biking, cultural, Civil War, artisan trails, even burger-and-brew trails. So why not an ice cream trail?
Eastern Connecticut started one last year. But Maryland will be the first state to take a lick an all-dairy farm ice cream trail.
And Maryland Ag Secretary Buddy Hance isn't waiting to start celebrating Ice Cream month in July. On Wednesday, he and Deputy Secretary Mary Ellen Setting will be sampling treats at three dairy farms while unveiling new Maryland's Best Ice Cream Trail.
This summer, Maryland Department of Agriculture will be encouraging consumers to be Best Ice Cream Trailblazers by visiting a network of seven dairy farms across the state. These are farms that produce their own ice cream and sell it directly to visiting consumers.
Under this promotion program, Marylanders will pick up an Ice Cream Trailblazer Passport at any of the seven creameries. It'll also be available online at www.marylandsbest.net starting June 20.
Residents will have the passport "stamped" at each creamery between June 20 and September 7. Then they can submit it to MDA to be entered in a drawing for the grand prize, which includes a $50 gift certificate to their favorite creamery.
Hance and Setting will be delivering the official "Maryland's Best Ice Cream Trail" sign and passports to each farm. The promotion program's aim is to increase the public's understanding of dairy farming by encouraging them to visit a farm and see what dairy farming is really like – while enjoying freshly-made, delicious ice cream produced right on the farm.
The ice-creamery stops will be at:
- 9:30 a.m. at Rocky Point Creamery, 4323A Tuscarora Road, Tuscarora in Frederick County
- 11:45 a.m. at Prigel Family Creamery, 4852 Long Green Road, Glen Arm, in Baltimore County
- 2 p.m. at Broom's Bloom Dairy, 1700 S. Fountain Green Road, Bel Air, in Harford County
Due to time and distance constraints, four creameries on the Ice Cream Trail won't be visited on Wednesday. They are: Kilby Cream at Rising Sun in Cecil County; South Mountain Creamery at Middletown in Frederick County; Misty Meadows Farm Creamery at Smithsburg in Washington County; and Chesapeake Bay Farms at Berlin in Worcester County.
Other farms in the state produce ice cream on-farm. But since they don't direct-sell to consumers on the farm, they aren't included on the Best Ice Cream Trail.