5 interesting and need-to-know facts about the Schnepf Farms Peach Festival 2017.
Pies, salsas, jellies, lemonade, cobbler, tea… even cinnamon rolls. There are endless foods that can be tweaked to include peaches.
Schnepf Farms, a family-owned agritourism farm run by Carrie Schnepf and her husband, Mark, will celebrate all things peaches during its annual Peach Festival from May 13-14 and 20-21.
During the festival, guests have the chance to pick different varieties of peaches grown on the family-owned farm, including new varieties of yellow peaches such as Super Zee, Princess and Brittany.
Although the farm grows a lot of different crops, it has become known for its peaches.
“Being the largest peach grower in the state of Arizona, people from all over the state love to come and pick peaches,” Mark said.
To keep up with growing demand, the family planted 1,000 new peach trees this year.
The festival has been an annual tradition for Valley residents and the Schnepf family since the mid-1990s.
“A lot of families, they schedule family get-togethers or they make special trips to Arizona, if they have out-of-state family, to be here during peach season, so as a family, they can come out and pick peaches,” Mark said.
Most of the Schnepf children work on the farm, just as Mark did growing up, and some employees grew up attending the event.
Part of the fun of the festival is getting to try different peach-inspired foods.
Starting at 7:30 a.m. during the weekends of the festival, the farm will host pancake breakfasts. The meals, which range in price from $7 to $12, include griddle-cooked pancakes prepared with fresh peaches from the farm.
Guests wanting to try different peach recipes can venture to the Peachy Sampling Pavilion for items such as peach syrup, salsa or preserve. Tasting tickets cost $1 for six samples.
Peachy items such as peach cinnamon rolls, pies, balsamic, marmalade and chutney, will be available for purchase at the country store and bakery.
Carrie developed the peach cinnamon rolls, one of the farm’s most popular peach items, from her grandma’s recipe.
“One year, about nine, ten years ago, I decided to add in fresh peaches. We literally hand-mix and hand-knead all of these cinnamon rolls, and we make probably 1,500 a day,” Carrie said.
This year, the farm will host Vintage Market Days during the festival’s opening weekend, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 12 to 14. Visitors can shop for one-of-a-kind vintage and repurposed items, clothing and jewelry from over 150 vendors.
An early buying ticket, good for all three days, is $10. General admission to the market for Saturday and Sunday costs $5.
Another new addition this year will be chef demos of peach-inspired recipes every day at 11 a.m. in the garden kitchen.
During the festival, the farm will have a plethora of family-friendly rides and activities, including a train, jumping pillows, a carousel, a roller coaster, swinging lady bugs, a water slide and a petting zoo.
At the main stage, people of all ages can take part in peach pie eating, peach-pit spitting and hula-hooping contests. The stage offers different contests and giveaways every 30 minutes.
Details: 7:30 a.m. -4 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, May 13-14 and May 20-21. Schnepf Farms, 24610 S. Rittenhouse Road, Queen Creek. 480-987-3100, schnepffarms.com. $5 general admission, free for children 12 and under. $15 for ride wristbands for children, $10 for adult wristbands, $3 per ride.
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