Bayfield Berries Ripe for the Picking

By KBJR News 1

July 2, 2012 Updated Jul 2, 2012 at 7:01 PM CDT

Bayfield, WI (Northland's NewsCenter) - James Erickson, of Erickson's Orchard and Country Store, said, typically, his strawberries ripen around June 20th, while this year, they had ripened by June 9th.

Even with the sweet success, however, there will still be fewer berries in Bayfield this year, due to fewer orchards than ever before.

It's a bittersweet success, according to Wisconsin tourism officials, as berries, and berry picking, are a huge draw for visitors to the region.

"It has to do with sustainability, and things that are organic. And, the local restaurants serve fresh raspberries, [and] fresh strawberries. So, it's really part of the experience—going out to an orchard, picking your own berries," said Stephanie Klett, Secretary for Wisconsin's Department of Tourism.

Erickson Orchard is one of two strawberry orchards left in Bayfield.