If you call the state of Virginia 'Home', then you're likely no stranger to the summer tradition of strawberry picking. It's something that I've enjoyed doing with friends and family every summer for the last few years.
Now that I live in Norfolk, I'm only about a 30-minute drive from one of the best areas for strawberry picking in the state -- Pungo. Home of the annual Strawberry Festival, Pungo is a charming rural area with many hidden gems. Some of these being the various popular farms and open-air stands offering freshly grown produce to the area. Dan and I have gone strawberry picking two summers in a row and have decided on a personal favorite spot -- Henley Farms.
The family that runs Henley Farms is so sweet and dedicated not only to their own farm, but to supporting other small/local businesses. Inside the first floor of the farmhouse, different foods and crafts are sold on behalf of both the Henley farm and others. Dan and I picked up blueberry jam and salsa alongside our strawberries, when we went to pick recently.
My first tip for taking advantage of strawberry season in Pungo is to follow the different farms on social media and to frequently check their websites for updates on when things open up for the summer. This is especially important while we're still adjusting to post-pandemic life, because a lot of things are still limited. Also, check the weather! Dan and I went the day after a big rain storm and thought we were the clever ones because it wasn't crowded. While the mud didn't bother us too much, the mosquitos absolutely shredded us -- so we'll definitely keep weather in mind for next time.
Picking strawberries is a great way to support the local farms and is SO much less expensive than buying imported strawberries from the grocery store. Not to mention it's also a great date activity or family outing to get some fresh air. I highly encourage visiting a few times throughout the summer!