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by Matt Bayman

Prepare to fill your senses, and your bellies, during this 52-mile loop drive through Miami and Darke counties.

The self-guided, fall-themed tour makes stops in Arcanum, Greenville and Ludlow Falls, plus Brumbaugh Fruit Farm, Bear’s Mill, Turkeyfoot Preserve and Greenville Falls. Along with seeing some beautiful fall foliage, especially along U.S. Route 36 and State Route 55, the route passes several interesting sculptures and barn quilts, a number of tasty destinations that feature apple cider, fresh donuts, apple fritters, Maid-Rite sandwiches, gourmet salads and more, and also visits a variety of antique and specialty shops. Travelers can get out and stretch with short, but very scenic hikes at Greenville Falls, Bear’s Mill and Turkeyfoot Preserve, or take more time to explore the many shops, restaurants and historical sites in Greenville and Arcanum. An observation deck at Turkeyfoot Preserve provides a panoramic (and very colorful) view of the Tawaskote Menitsa Prairie, while the rim of Ludlow Falls also makes for beautiful fall foliage. On Saturdays and Sundays in October, Brumbaugh Fruit and Fun Farm hosts its annual Fall Fun Area. It features 25 different stations for families to enjoy, including a corn maze, animals, games, and other activities.

In short, this is a close-to-home road trip that will satisfy. Enjoy and be safe! 

 

Some of the things you can see and experience on this trip include

- See an awesome buffalo sculpture and an amazing sunflower sculpture
- Take a trip down memory lane, and antiques shop
 at The Olde Nostalgia Shoppe in Arcanum

- Check out the new Veterans Memorial Covered Bridge at Bear’s Mill
- Drink amazing apple cider and eat famous apple fritters, donuts and pies at Brumbaugh Fruit Farm
- Visit the Fort Jefferson Monument

- Discover Little Beach at Wayne Lakes, then look at the many fall, mirror-reflections throughout the village

- Enjoy a wonderful menu of sandwiches, salads, cookies and more, plus great atmosphere at Montage Café
- See a panoramic view of Ludlow Falls
- Enjoy an all-you-can-eat Sunday breakfast or lunch at the Laura's Country Diner in Laura
- See the Human Hamster Wheel at Brumbaugh Farm
- Drive two of the area’s most colorful roads in the fall, St. Rt. 55 and U.S. 36
- See the historic brick streets of downtown Arcanum
- See the panoramic view of the Tawaskote Menitsa Prairie at Turkeyfoot Preserve

- Try the onion rings at the Pitsburg Pizza Grill
- Dine a few world-famous Maid-Rite sandwiches, dine or drive-thru.
- Visit the log cabin and nature center at Shawnee Prairie Preserve

- See unusual geology at Wayne Lakes
- Explore the famous KitchenAidExperience Retail Center in Greenville

- Shop at a fun variety store at Fourman's Variety in Arcanum

- Tour the historic Garst Museum in Greenville
And so much more…

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DIRECTIONS

Directions for this tour are listed below in black and travel clockwise, starting from and finishing in Ludlow Falls. Mileage for each leg of the trip is in red. Points of Interest are blue and are places that can be visited or viewed from the road during that particular leg of the trip. They are listed in the order they appear while driving the tour.

The underlined Points of Interest are linked for more information.
You can also click on the Google Map above to send the directions to your phone for navigation, or to see the full route. Drive safely!

Starting Point: Ludlow Falls

Points of Interest
- View the falls from above or below. A short, but steep trail leads to the bottom of the falls and very nice scenery.

Ludlow Falls to Brumbaugh Fruit & Fun Farm with a stop in Arcanum (13 miles)
Leave the Ludlow Falls parking lot and head west on State Route 55 for 3 miles. Turn left on Rangeline Road and then right on State Route 571 toward Laura. In Laura, turn left on the very short Laura-Arcanum Road, followed by an immediate right on Pike Street, which turns into State Route 721. From 721, turn right on Laura-Arcanum Road. Follow this for 7 miles into Arcanum, followed by Brumbaugh Fruit Farm.
NOTE: At the Darke County line, this road becomes Pitsburg-Laura Road, then, in Arcanum, South Street, and finally Hollansburg Arcanum Road.


Points of Interest

- Colorful State Route 55 – As you travel west on State Route 55 from Ludlow Falls, the Stillwater River/Ludlow Creek will be on your left. It is very colorful in the fall.

- Laura's Country Diner – 6 W. Pike St. in Laura. Enjoy all-you-can-eat breakfast and lunch buffets from 8-11 a.m. and 11-2 p.m. every Sunday. $7.25 per person for breakfast and $8.25 for lunch.

- Pitsburg Pizza Grill – Along with great pizza, they have popular burgers and onion rings, as well as an arcade and billiards table and cold drinks. Located at 127 N. Jefferson St. in Pitsburg.

 

Points of Interest in Arcanum
- The Olde Nostalgia Shoppe, 104 W. George St.

Open Saturdays from 10-6 p.m. only
- Staley’s Antiques & Woodworking, 7 N. Sycamore St.

Open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. T-Sa and noon to 5 p.m. Sunday
- See the brick streets of downtown Arcanum
- Farmer Brown Restaurant, 6363 Hollansburg-Sampson Road
- Huston’s Restaurant, 9 Water St. – Try the barbecue ribs
- Country Lane Treasures, 4790 Grubbs Rex Road
- Fourman’s Variety, 4 W. George St
.


- Brumbaugh Fruit & Fun Farm – On Saturdays and Sundays (11-7 and noon-7), families can pay $10 per person (ages 3 and under and 65 and older are free), and enjoy 25 different fall activities, from The Human Hamster Wheel and Winnie’s Cracked Corn Box to corn mazes and playgrounds. For those coming during the week, make sure to stop in the market for fresh apple cider and apples from the orchard, and by the market and bakery for famous apple fritters, donuts and pies, including, of course, apple and dutch apple pies. Plan your visit at www.brumbaughfruitfarm.com. The market and bakery are open throughout the week.
 

Brumbaugh Fruit & Fun Farm to Wayne Lakes (4 miles)
Exit to the right at Brumbaugh Fruit Farm on Hollansburg Arcanum Road West and drive for about 3 miles. Turn right on State Route 503 for 2.8 miles and then left on State Route 121. This is the Wayne Lakes area. Use Mohawk Drive to explore the heart of this unique community.

Points of Interest
- This part of Ohio is unique for its geology. According to Wikipedia, “Although most of west central Ohio is a flat landscape intersected with shallow river valleys, Wayne Lakes is located among a series of southwest trending gravel hills over a thick base of limestone…These steep hills are known in geology as kame or esker” and are “cone-like and elongated.” They are 40-60-feet tall and were deposited here during the last Ice Age. Because of the gravel and sand knolls, this area, it was chosen as the site of Fort Jefferson in 1791.

- Visit the Fort Jefferson State Memorial at 121 Weaver-Fort Jefferson Road.

- Wayne Lakes Beach & many mirror-image scenes on the lakes  

Wayne Lakes to Turkeyfoot Preserve (4 miles)
Continue north on State Route 121. Turn left on Bishop Road and Turkeyfoot Preserve is directly on your right.

Points of Interest
Take a hike to the observation deck at Turkeyfoot to see a colorful panoramic view of the Tawaskote Menitsa Prairie
.

 

Turkeyfoot Preserve to Downtown Greenville (3 miles)
Follow State Route 121 into downtown Greenville. To visit the Maid-Rite Sandwich Shoppe, turn left at the traffic circle. To visit the Montage Café, the KitchenAid Experience Retail Center and other restaurants and shops in Greenville, turn right at the traffic circle.

Points of Interest in Greenville
There are too many to list, but some highlights include:
- Maid-Rite Sandwich Shoppe
- Shawnee Prairie & Nature Center
- Garst Museum
- Treaty of Greenville State Park
- Tecumseh Pointe Preserve
- Montage Café
- The Merchant House
- The Bistro Off Broadway
- Sweet Annie’s Cabin
- Cratiques Antiques & Collectibles
- KitchenAid Experience Retail Center
- The Cozy Nest
- The Ivy League


Greenville to Bear’s Mill (5.5 miles)
Follow State Route 571 East, out of town. Continue east on U.S. 36. After 5 miles, look for Arcanum Bears Mill Road on your right. The mill is directly on your right.

Points of Interest
- Buffalo sculpture – After passing Turtle Creek Golf Course, keep an eye out on your right for this interesting sculpture on private property. A turn-around road provides safe access to view the sculpture.
- Bear’s Mill – Explore the historic mill, buy some local pottery and take a short hike to the new Veterans Memorial Covered Bridge and monument on the property, plus some very pretty fall views of the property.

- Bear's Mill Fall Open House is Oct. 13-14

 

Bear’s Mill to Greenville Falls (11 miles)
Return back to U.S. 36 and continue east toward Covington. In about 10 miles, turn right on Rangeline Road. Greenville Falls is a little more than a mile away.

Points of Interest
- This is a very beautiful stretch of U.S. 36 that follows Greenville Creek
- Darke County Lake Wildlife Area
- Bike path access in Gettysburg
- Lazy R Campground
- Greenville Falls State Scenic Area

- Scenic Rangeline Road

A SHORT SIDE TRIP – Stillwater Prairie – Rangeline Road Access (3 miles)
Instead of turning right (south) on Rangeline Road from U.S. 36, turn left (north). Follow Rangeline Road as it jogs to Stillwater Prairie Reserve – Eastern Trailhead. It is about 3 miles to Stillwater Prairie from U.S. 36. Once here, take the beautiful hiking trails along the river and through a very colorful prairie.

Greenville Falls to Ludlow Falls (10 miles)
Continue south of Rangline Road until reaching State Route 55.

Points of Interest
- Barn quilts & red barns
- Sunflower sculpture near Canyon Run Ranch in Pleasant Hill

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