Carroll County Promises Rest, Relaxation and Family Fun Looking for a getaway not far away and engaging stuff to do with kids or friends? Read on!

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April brings us all a chance to get outdoors for a ride or walk in the country. Carroll County is a beautiful, rural area just 45 minutes northwest of Baltimore. Our backroads offer scenic vistas of farmland dotted with grazing cows and sheep, blue skies painting the horizon. Roll down the window and let the air blow through your hair. Feel the sun on your face. And get ready for some fun and varied activities.

Come discover our Barn Quilt Trail designed to let you meander our country roads while viewing various types of quilt patterns on the sides of local barns. These roads lead you through our small towns, where you can take a break to stretch your legs. Our downtown Main Streets offer a fascinating look at historic architecture while you shop for the perfect souvenir or unique gift at a locally owned shop or boutique. Local food from down-home to gourmet is available whenever you’ve worked up an appetite.

And once you’re feeling thirsty, the Carroll County Wine Trail provides a relaxing experience while educating you about the various wines, many made with grapes grown right here. Our knowledgeable and friendly winery owners are happy to recommend just the right wine for you to take home.

Before you head back home, though, be sure to stop by Piney Run Park and lake. Here you will find boat rentals, fishing piers, bird watching, tree-lined trails, a nature center and a playground for kids. This 300-acre lake is rich in environmental and recreational resources. The nature center is home to dozens of exhibits, including live reptiles, injured hawks, vultures and owls.

Another must-do before you’re through is the Carroll Arts Center located in historic downtown Westminster. This 1937 art deco center includes a 263-seat theater and two large art galleries, where regional visual artists in a variety of media and styles are exhibited. The

Carroll Arts Center offers a wealth of cultural opportunities including musical concerts, lectures, film, dramatic productions, exhibits, classes and camps.  And, the annual PEEPshow featuring marvelous marshmallow art forms runs March 25 through April 6.

But wait, there’s more …

For a true country experience, discover the oxen at the Carroll County Farm Museum. Jim and Jack fascinate children with their size and brute strength.

And the Farm Museum is the home of many great events throughout year: the Maryland Wine Festival®, Fall Harvest Days and July 4th Celebration, just to name a few. The Museum also hosts

several teas: Teddy Bear Tea in April, American Girl Tea and Holiday Teas.

Union Mills Homestead and Grist Mill—home of the Shrivers for six generations—allows a look back into the first “mall” shopping experience. This historic 1797 site was once the popular go-to center for farm families for miles around. Here, they would bring their wheat, corn and rye to be ground into flour. While waiting, they would purchase goods from the local store and pick up their mail. You, too, can take home fresh ground flour—and at a bargain. And their All-You-Can-Eat Corn Roast in August is a one-of-a-kind experience: fresh-picked corn, roasted in the husk over an open grill. Yum!

If you fall in love and decide you can’t go home, not yet, consider booking an overnight stay at one of the reasonably priced hotels or unique bed and breakfasts in Carroll County.

When you want to escape, but not venture too far away, Carroll County is fresh air, blue skies, country vistas and activities galore. Breathe, relax, enjoy.

Repeat as necessary.­

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