When I was a kid, we would drive to Michigan every year to harvest cherries. Lots of cherries. I remember once we went for peaches instead, and it was a whole new world. You know how many cherries you need to pick to fill a bucket? Many. And how many peaches? Very few. Plus that spoiled me for store-bought peaches pretty much for life. Which is why we have a peach tree in the yard. Oh, and there was that time Dad fell off the cherry-picking ladder. I'm thinking the economic return was lost that year.
So, anyhow, now that the kids are a little bigger, I'm thinking it's U-Pick-Em time. Here's a guide to Chicago area farms to try out. It's a little early yet, but rhubarb and asparagus are sure to be available. If that sounds like too much work, here's a listing of farmers' markets nation-wide.
Edited to add: Here's a much better listing of Chicago-area farmers' markets.
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