‘Tis the season for holiday baking. For many people, including myself, a KitchenAid stand mixer is an essential tool for producing heaps of Christmas cookies. Did you know that every KitchenAid stand mixer ever produced was made in Greenville, Ohio?
Over the summer, my kids and I took a day trip to Greenville to learn more about where our stand mixer and blender came from. We started at the KitchenAid Experience Retail Center in charming downtown Greenville, the seat of Darke County.
Inside is a retail store with a demonstration kitchen, an outlet store and a small museum. The retail center is open six days a week with cooking demonstrations on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. We arrived early to make sure we got seats for the demonstration and had plenty of time to browse the store and museum.
The retail store carries stand mixers, oodles of mixer attachments, blenders, food processors and other small appliances in a wide range of colors. You’ll also find cookware, cutlery and more. The outlet store is located on the lower level and has a selection of refurbished appliances at a significant discount. Even though I have a KitchenAid mixer, the color doesn’t match my kitchen, and I was really tempted to get a new one, but I settled for a few accessories.
Also on the lower level is the museum, which is small, but interesting. We saw the evolution of the stand mixer from the 1920’s through today.
A couple of the exhibits showed the inner workings of a mixer. We also saw the 1,000,000th KitchenAid mixer ever made, which is gold-plated! The museum also has Julia Child’s mixer.
We were back in our seats before 10:30 when the demonstration started. The cook showed us how to make chocolate walnut zucchini cake. She was very engaging and told us funny stories as she prepared the cake.
She put the cake in the oven, and pulled another cake out of the refrigerator which she had prepared in advance. Next, she showed us how to make the frosting. She frosted the cake, and then came the best part, according to my kids: she let us eat it.
My kids enjoyed the demonstration and must have paid attention, because for my birthday the following week, they made me a chocolate zucchini cake!
Then we drove about three miles to the KitchenAid Factory which offers tours four days a week. Participants must be at least 12 years old and wear shoes with closed toes and heels. No reservations are needed unless you have a group of eight or more. The tour guide equipped everyone with headsets so that we could hear her inside the noisy factory.
Cameras are not permitted on the tour, so I couldn’t take any pictures. We saw the entire process of making the mixers—everything from the painting operation (they have SO many colors) to the assembly of the wire whisks. The tour lasted about an hour and a half, and all of us found it to be very interesting.
We really enjoyed our KitchenAid outing. There is no charge for the cooking demonstration, museum or factory tour. The only money I spent was for the accessories I bought.
Tips for visiting:
- If you want to experience both a cooking demonstration and a factory tour, visit on a Wednesday or Friday.
- Arrive no later than 10 a.m. for the cooking demonstration because seats are limited.
- Leave the KitchenAid Experience around noon so you can arrive at the factory by 12:15 p.m.
- For lunch, plan to eat in the car on your way to the factory tour, or wait until after the factory tour for a leisurely late lunch.
- The KitchenAid Experience will offer cooking demonstrations through Dec. 23, then take a break through February. Factory tours are not offered the week after Christmas.
423 South Broadway, Greenville, OH 45331
Monday – Saturday: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Cooking demonstrations at 10:30 on Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays (not available in January and February)
KitchenAid Factory Tours
1701 KitchenAid Way
Greenville, OH 45331
Tuesday – Friday: 12:30 p.m.
For more family fun inspiration, Find It Here at Ohio.org.