Farm Skills Program « Claude Moore Colonial Farm

Farm Skills Program

Appropriate for ages 4 and older

Offered on selected Thursdays in the spring, summer, and fall

This program is designed to give hands-on experience of several skills necessary for an 18th-century farm. The activities are set up in stations around the Market Fair grounds, and participants may go from station to station as they choose, spending as much or as little time as they wish at each activity.

Activities may include:

  • pounding corn
  • carding wool
  • spinning with a drop spindle
  • dipping candles (weather permitting: spring and fall only)
  • 18th-century games


This program can accommodate up to 200 people, so unless your group is exceptionally large, you will be sharing the grounds with other groups of varying ages.

The Farm Skills program activities run from 10am – 12pm ONLY, on selected Thursdays. During and after the Farm Skills program, participants are welcome to visit the 18th-century Farm Site, which is open until 4:30pm.

Program Dates for 2014 (all are Thursdays):

  • Spring

                April  17 & 24

               May    1, 8, 22 & 29

  • Summer

               July 10 & 24

  • Autumn

                September 25

                October 2, 9, 23 & 30

                November 6 & 13

Please note that the Farm Skills staff and volunteers will not be dressed in period costume. They will be in modern clothing to differentiate between this program and the 18th century farm, where the interpreters are in costume and in character for the year 1771. The Farm Skills interpreters are therefore able to answer your modern questions, and to interpret a broader range of history than those at the 18th century farm site.

Reservations are required.
Reservations are required for this program. Groups of ten or more individuals must make paid reservations for Farm Skills. Smaller groups and individuals do not have to prepay, though they still need to make a reservation. To make reservations, e-mail with the following information:

  • which Farm Skills day you would like to come
  • name of the group
  • number and age of children
  • number of adults
  • name of the group leader and a phone number where he or she may be reached on the day of the event

You will receive a confirmation email after submitting your reservation; if you do not receive this within 1 week, either send your email reservation again or call the Farm office at 703-442-7557.

Please note: When you make a reservation, you guarantee that you will bring and pay for the number of people that you specify. You may change this number up to 10 days before your visit; with less than 10 days’ notice, you must pay for at least the number of people that you made a reservation for. (See also: Cancellation Policy, on this page)

$5.00 per individual, which includes the $2.00 general admission fee.  Members are $3.00, and under age 3 are free. Groups of ten or more must make reservations and pay a $50 advance deposit.

Essential Information for your Group:
Please download this 1-page Word document and copy it for all the adults in your group: GroupFarmSkills.doc (31 KB)

Farm Skills Cancellation Policy:

With at least 10 days’ notice of your cancellation, we will either refund your $50 deposit or reschedule within the season if possible.

With less than 10 days’ notice of your cancellation, your $50 deposit is non-refundable.

If the Farm cancels a program due to extreme inclement weather, we will either refund your $50 deposit or reschedule within the season if possible.

Moon Guidebooks Top 10 DC

Moon Guidebooks:

Rates Claude Moore Colonial Farm One of the

This spring break, Patricia Nevins Kime—respected journalist and author of the first edition of Moon Washington DC—offers her selections for ten can’t-miss activities, perfect for kids and their chaperones.

"7. Claude Moore Colonial Farm: Something’s always being grown, harvested, dyed, dried, or crafted at Claude Moore Colonial Farm in McLean, Virginia, a rendition of a modest circa-1771 frontier farm."