Sunflowers for Wishes at Buttonwood Farm in Griswold, CT

posted by yazmin

Update for 2017: Sunflowers for Wishes will run from July 22-30, 2017

473 Shetucket Turnpike, Griswold, CT  860-376-4081

Buttonwood Farm in Griswold, CT is the home to Sunflowers for Wishes. They’ve been planting sunflowers since 2003 and for one week each summer they host an event that benefits the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Connecticut. The foundation grants wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions.

Buttonwood Farm Sunflowers for Wishes

Sunflowers for Wishes runs from 10 am until dark each day during the event week. My intention was to get there at 10 am but a mixture of 3 kids and traffic caused us to get to the farm closer to noon. There was already a pretty long line for the hayride and ice cream by the time we got there.

TIP: Get to Buttonwood Farm by 10 am to avoid long lines

276 Make-A-Wish CT


There are two free parking lots and street parking available. Even though it was crowded when we went, we were still able to catch a great parking spot in front of the ice cream shop. There’s also a parking lot across the street from the end of the sunflower walking path.

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The cost to ride the hayride or cow train ride is $5 per person. Children 2 and under are free. 100% of proceeds go to Make-A-Wish of CT.

Tickets (in the form of coins) were available at the front of the hay ride line next to the hot dog tent.

Sunflowers for Wishes Griswold, CT


Hot dogs, chips, drinks and ice cream were available for purchase. You can also bring in your own food. There are picnic tables scattered around the farm.



The highlight of the Sunflowers for Wishes was the hayride. We waited in line for an hour to go on the hayride. I overheard an employee say that the wait for the hayride is that long all week long. We went on 90+ degree day so thankfully the line was in the shade.

The hayride is a 20 – 25 minute ride through the cow pasture to feed the cows and then a ride through the sunflower field.

Sunflower Festival CT

The hayride stops shortly for everyone to feed the cows hay. We dangled hay from the sides of the tractor and the cows came and ate it from our hands. We stayed with the cows for 5+ minutes. It was really a unique experience that we all enjoyed.

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The second part of the trip was to the sunflower field. Buttonwood Farms has 4 acres of sunflowers in bloom. The hayride drives right up to them but you can’t get off. You can go on the walking trail once you’re off the ride (more on that later). Everyone admired the flowers and tried to quickly snap a selfie among the blooms.

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Cow Train Ride

The cow train ride is super cute for kids. It’s a tractor that pulls little cars that are painted like cows. The train is only about 10 minutes long. It goes out into the sunflower field and returns. It does not visit the cows. Children 2 and under must ride with an adult.

TIP: There is no line (or a very short one) to ride the cow train. It’s a great option for families that want to go on a ride, but can’t wait an hour for the hayride.

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Walking Path

After we went on the hayride we decided to get a closer look at the sunflowers. There is a walking path (stroller-friendly) through the middle of the sunflower field. It ends at a large hill that overlooks all of the flowers and is the perfect place for pictures. Don’t forget the camera!

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Ice Cream

Buttonwood Farms is known for their homemade ice cream. The line for the ice cream seemed to be equally as long as it was for the hay ride. Unfortunately, after the long car ride to the farm and long wait for the hay ride my little ones were ready for a nap. We decided to skip the ice cream this year but hope to try it next year. Their menu did look delicious. They even had sunflower ice cream!

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Sunflower Bouquets

You can also purchase bouquets of sunflowers at the farm. They are on a first come first serve basis. A bouquet of 5 sunflowers costs $10. All proceeds go to the Make-A-Wish of CT. There were also t-shirts and notecards available for purchase.

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We had a great time at the Sunflowers for Wishes event. It was a great way to spend the day with the whole family and the best part of it was that all proceeds go to a good cause.

Posted in Family, Family Day Trips, Things to do in CT, Travel. Tagged , , , , , , , , .

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