History 85 years in the making.
About Grandpa Tiny's Heritage Farm
Frankenmuth is rich in history, and Grandpa Tiny's Farm is a big part of it! Founded in 1938 by William 'Tiny' Zehnder, this has been a working farm with crops and livestock ever since.
Tiny Zehnder, in addition to farming also helped run the family business, the Bavarian Inn Restaurant. Being a visionary, it was his intention to make this a public farm where everyone could experience and learn about agriculture. He is also credited with spreading the Bavarian theme throughout the town of Frankenmuth to celebrate the heritage of the original settlers.
While Tiny has been greatly missed for many years, his Wife Dorothy recently celebrated her 100th birthday and still works in the kitchens of the Bavarian Inn Restaurant!
Grandpa Tiny Zehnder himself!
The Big Blue Barn
Red, dark brown, light brown... the Big Blue Barn has gone through some color changes. Since 2017, it was decided that what better color for the barn than Bavarian Blue!
Through the Seasons
During the Spring time, it is full-on baby season at the farm. You may find lambs, baby chicks, bunnies and more in our petting barn that stays open during our entire years season. Our egg incubators will be full and hatching baby chickens, turkey, or peafowl.
Summer brings the farm alive with growing farm crops including over twenty acres of sunflowers. During the Frankenmuth Flower Festival is when the fields of flowers are open for visiting and picking. Make sure to save the date because you will not want to miss how stunningly beautiful the landscape becomes. Make sure to take home a bouquet with you to enjoy at home.
Fall time is all about turning leaves, cider & donuts and pumpkin picking! Our pumpkin patch opens up sometime in September along with hay wagon rides on the weekends. Bring your camera and put the littles in their overalls for some gorgeous photo opportunities.
Winter weekends are filled with jolly cheer as Santa and his real reindeer take over the farm. This special event, deemed Santa's Reindeer Farm has become a family tradition where children and adults walk the festive farm, visiting with Santa's workings, the Jolly man himself and even get to pet reindeer.
Meet Farmer Wendy
Since 2017, Wendy Winkel has cared for the farm while running her Agri-tourism business. Her passion for Agriculture education pulled her and her two children up from Rochester, Michigan where she was a practicing Dental Hygienist to begin this journey of providing educational experiences and events on the farm. Her education on Agriculture and Agri-tourism grows as the farm grows.
She is currently serving as President of the Michigan Agri-tourism Association, and is also very involved in the Frankenmuth community.