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One last hurrah: Whittamore's Farm to close to the public after this season

After opening to the public for more than 60 years, the owners of a beloved family farm in Markham say this season will be last that you will be able to pick your own produce there.

Farm owner says the decision to close was difficult, but his family needs a break

Whittamore's Farms near Rouge Park announced on its website Tuesday morning that it would close to the public in November. (Whittamore's Farm/Facebook)

After opening to the public for more than 60 years, the owners of a beloved family farm in Markham say this season will be last that you will be able to pick your own produce there.

Whittamore's Farms, which is near Rouge National Urban Park, announced on its website Tuesday morning that it would close to the public in November.

"It has been a privilege to operate this business and we are grateful for you our loyal customers and everyone who has been part of the Whittamore's Farm family," the statement reads.

The farm will operate as normal starting May 3, offering pick-your-own fruits and vegetables, a shop with fresh produce, baked goods and preserves, as well as the Fun Farm Yard with barnyard animals, wagon rides and games.

Mike Whittamore, who along with other family members owns and operates the farm, said it was a difficult and emotional decision to make — but ultimately, he and his family needed a break. In the 34 years he's operated the farm, Wittamore said he's only had one summer off.

The farm will begin its last season open to the public on May 3. (CBC)

The family says it will continue to farm the land in a different capacity after closing to the public. On the farm's Facebook page, the family said it has not sold the land to developers.

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