If Mike’s Farm in Back Swamp (Beulaville) isn’t on your NC Bucket List, remember that it’s never too late to make an addition. Even before our first time visiting, we asked people with connections to the area about this place and the words “special place” typically came up.
Of course, a suggestion (more a command) that we must make time to go out there ended each exchange. Luckily, we’ve made the trip out to this pillar of Onslow County a couple of times, learning firsthand that a picture of this place should appear in the dictionary next to the word “agritourism.”
Beyond the inviting atmosphere, home-cooked food, and NC products showcased en masse, you’ll quickly understand that this is truly a destination worth experiencing.
Here, we’ll share all the ways you can enjoy a day or evening at Mike’s Farm with friends and family, but we first need to go back and share how it all started.
For quick info about Mike’s Farm (including hours and location), please scroll to the bottom of this post.
History of Mike’s Farm
In the mid-1980s, owners Mike and Theresa Lowe took on a section of the family’s tobacco farm (it was split among siblings) to sell Christmas trees. The two clearly knew what they were doing because the business grew quickly.
Today, Mike’s Farm has grown to offer seasonal events to visitors, an animal observation area, baked goods, various gifts, and delicious food from their always-popular restaurant. Mike and Theresa’s accomplishments and contributions to the community haven’t gone unnoticed, either.
One such acknowledgment of their hard work came in the form of 2017’s “Small Business of the Year Award,” presented by the Jacksonville-Onslow Chamber of Commerce.
Visiting Mike’s Farm Today
Depending on when you visit Mikes Farm, you’ll be able to enjoy any one of their special events. But no matter when you decide to head out there, allow yourself some time to walk around.
Mike’s lives up to its “Farm” moniker with a variety of animals who quickly befriend visitors, especially when they think food is coming. You can feed goats, chickens, ducks, and more friends you’ll meet while walking around.
If you don’t prepare for a meal at Mike’s Farm’s restaurant, hopefully, you still have time. For starters, you should arrive as early as possible unless you’re attending one of their dinner shows and have your spot booked.
Also, get ready for an epic, Southern meal of amazing proportions and epic portions. They’ll have fried chicken, some of the best macaroni and cheese (recipe here), and all the fixings and if you don’t come away full of yummy goodness, then you did something wrong.
For their dinners on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, you can expect a wait if you don’t arrive exactly when the doors open. There are no reservations and if you do have to wait, there are plenty of rocking chairs outside for you to comfortably sit and enjoy time with your family.
During busier times, a food truck will be outside serving some of the food you’ll find in the restaurant.
Check here for info on restaurant pricing and hours.
Bakery and Country Store
Many folks will start their Mike’s Farm experience at the Country Store and Bakery. Both share the same building and you’ll walk through the former first, perusing various gifts for the current season.
However, this gift shop always has an angel- and snowman-filled section prepared for Christmas, no matter when you visit. They’ve also dedicated space for teachers and a massive collection of Yankee Candles, with fragrances perfect for anyone you shop for.
In the bakery, you’ll find a delicious collection of fudge and baked goods galore. Hopefully, they haven’t sold out of danish by the time you make it, because that’s a nice snack before digging into dinner or worth saving space for more dessert.
The NC Products Barn
The NC Products Barn is Mike’s Farm’s newest addition and boy, is it impressive! For this space, the owners hope to represent all 100 counties in North Carolina and based on all the wines, coffee, jams, and cheese straws we saw, I think they’re already close.
Please make time to stroll through this barn if you love supporting North Carolina’s makers and creators.
Mike’s Farm’s special events attract people from afar and after attending one, you’ll see why.
Christmas at Mike’s Farm
Ho! Ho! Christmas Show
Starting on the day after Thanksgiving until December 22, the Ho! Ho! Christmas Show will fill you up with good food, get you singing, and take you for a lighted hayride.
Festivities kick off with that epic dinner we mentioned from the Mike’s Farm restaurant.
Local artists Gaylon Pope & Sweetwater follow things up with a variety of holiday and gospel songs, mixing comedy and family-friendly fun in, too. During the show we attended, someone from the audience got the chance to fill in for Kris Kringle during a rendition of “Santa Baby.”
Finally, you’ll hop on the back of a tractor for their Festival of Lights Hayride (more info below).
Evening shows run start at 7:00 pm from Wednesdays to Sundays and starting on Thursdays, there’s an additional matinee show at 2:30 pm. Doors open 30 minutes prior to the show and tickets for this event go fast, so grab your ticket now or set a reminder for next year in August when they go on sale again!
Festival of Lights Hayride
If you can’t get into a Ho! Ho! Christmas Show (I love writing that as much as I do saying it), you can still enjoy at Festival of Lights Hayride at Mike’s Farm.
The 30-minute ride will take through an immaculate collection of displays. Themes include a variety of traditional Christmas stories, salutes our nation and flag, and there’s even a live nativity scene that you’ll pass by.
As we hopped off our tractor bed, I asked the man helping us (who happened to be a Lowe) how long it took to put all of this together. Over 13 days starting at the beginning of November, he and four other people pulled it off.
Their hard work wasn’t the only thing that impressed me, as it was another confirmation that this is truly a family-run farm.
More Christmas Events
You can find even more Christmas fun at Mike’s Farm, including Supper with Santa on select Sunday nights, private restaurant parties, and even a hotdog roast and hayride for groups of 25 or more.
Annual Dinner Shows
Throughout the year, Mike’s Farm hosts annual dinner shows, catering to the season. Examples include their Fall Variety and Valentine’s Sweetheart dinner shows, which are typically for one night only.
Even More Events
The calendar at Mike’s Farm Pumpkin Patch seems pretty busy throughout most of the year. Just before all the Christmas fun, Fall Pumpkin Patch Hayrides run throughout much of October. In spring, Easter on the Farm and strawberry picking keep things busy.
You can find more info about all these events and more as special event dates approach here.
I can’t end this without mentioning that Mike’s Farm even hosts birthday parties and group cookouts if you’ve got a group of 25 or more ready to go. And of course, if you want to get married in a beautiful setting, check out the Barn. It can host up to 200 people.
And I can’t close this without thanking the owners of Mike’s Farm for creating this amazing destination. It’s clearly the product of many years of their hard work and we hope it continues on for generations long beyond our own.
I hope you can visit this extraordinary place in what’s becoming one of our favorite counties to visit in Eastern North Carolina. Also, if you need a body or two for your next cookout or dinner party at Mike’s Farm, you know who to call!
Mike’s Farm Quick Facts
Address: 1600 Haw Branch Rd, Beulaville, NC 28518
- Gift shop and Bakery: Thursday through Saturday from 12:00 pm to 8:00 pm.
- Restaurant: Thursday and Friday from 4:30 pm to 8:00 pm and Saturday from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm.
Note: Special hours may apply according to season. Check here for more info.
Things to Do
- Visit Animals
- Dinner Shows
- Eat Baked Goods and Down-Home Food
- Shop NC Products
- Host Cookouts and Birthday Parties
Special thanks to Onslow County Tourism for providing us with complimentary admission to Mike’s Farm’s Ho! Ho! Christmas Show. We visited before during a hosted trip and were grateful to be invited back for more. All opinions within this article are our own.