Santa Maria Valley

The Berry Stop is the Berry Best

The Berry Stop

As you cruise down Highway 101 in Santa Maria, do yourself a big favor. Ripe, big, colorful berries can be bought at a great price, right off of the 101. The best way to get to these delicious berries from the 101 is to take the Stowell Road exit and turn East.  As soon as you do, you will see The Berry Stop.

Strawberries with long stema The Santa Maria Valley is the perfect growing ground for delicious strawberries.  The valley is full of seemingly endless strawberry fields. This is the sixth season that owner Kathy McPike has had the little blue and red berry stand and locals and passers-by love it. Picked fresh daily, expect for Sunday, The Berry Stop offers strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries when in season. Typically, they are open Monday to Saturday between February and October depending on Mother Nature from 10 am to 6 pm or until they sell out so be sure to get there early.

“Fresh fruit that tastes perfectly ripe and juicy is a mouth full of happiness” is what Kathy has to say about the berries she sells at The Berry Stop.

“Travelers and locals alike come back to The Berry Stop season after season for fresh berries.  People drive for miles to have Santa Maria strawberries and it’s an honor that they come to The Berry Stop” says Kathy.

California Giant growers provide The Berry Stop with daily fresh picked berries straight from the field. This allows people, to get the freshest berries possible and skip the grocery lines. Santa Maria strawberries can be seen packaged in grocery stores across the country.

Kathy attributes the success of the stand to the fruit but also to her employees, “I am blessed to have some of the best students and crews come back season after season to help me work the stand. My job is great because of these guys.” It’s not just the location or the berries that keep people coming back but their great customer service. The biggest and best berries around.

If that’s not enough, “Kathy McPike, the owner is one of my favorite people.” Said Kathy Vlahov a customer of The Berry Stop. Kathy McPike’s bubbly personality brings life and energy to the stand and makes everyone feel welcomed.

Susie Q Seasonings Being a family-owned business Kathy likes to support other local family businesses. The Berry Stop also sells Susie Q seasonings and beans. Susie Q seasoning pairs great with Tri-Trip and a side of strawberries for the perfect Santa Maria style barbecue. Strawberry hullers and dipping chocolate for the perfect chocolate covered strawberries is also sold at The Berry Stop.

The Berry Stop has won the Santa Maria Sun’s Best of Northern Santa Barbara County’s Best Produce/Farm Stand for two years in a row. It is great to live in an area where you are able to get fresh berries that are picked in your own backyard.  Strawberries are just one the great things the Santa Maria Valley has to offer. Next time you are craving big, ripe and deliciously sweet berries, stop at The Berry Stop. You’ll have a berry nice time and won’t be disappointed.

By E’Ana Bordon

 

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