Here’s Why You Need to Visit Schnepf Farms in Arizona

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Here’s Why You Need to Visit Schnepf Farms in Arizona

Sometimes breathtaking scenery is what you most remember from a trip. Other times it’s the food, or an especially nice museum. What stood out the most for me during a recent trip to Arizona? It has to be Schnepf Farms in Queen Creek.

On a recent tour through Visit Mesa, I got to see an adorable downtown, eat delicious food, create my own art, and stargaze on a mountain with a university professor. It was incredible, but one place takes center stage in my mind when I reminisce about the trip. 

Schnepf Farms has been in the Schnepf family for generations, with Mark and Carrie Schnepf currently at the helm. Mark grew up at the farm, and became the first mayor of Queen Creek in 1989. Carrie was working at a local news station when she met Mark, and the rest is history.

Given Mark’s family history, it’s no surprise that Schnepf Farms is more than a business. You can tell it’s the family’s passion project when you speak with them. Carrie definitely seems to be the innovator in this couple. It was her idea to turn their RV camping area into The Cozy Peach, a glamping area filled with airstreams she renovated herself.

Schnepf Farms

I stayed in the 1970 Silver Streak, which I later found out was the first RV that Mrs. Schnepf had renovated. My trailer was fully plumbed with a shower and regular toilet (hooray!), with air conditioning, comfy beds and obviously expensive linens. It had the kind of amenities you expect from a hotel room, with a little kitchenette, coffee maker, television, and wi-fi. I’ve always said I don’t camp, but if this is camping, I’m in. And if you want to go for a bike ride through their substantial farm, bikes are available and ready to ride.

The farm, known for its peach festival, is busy year round, with its own little amusement park area—again, an idea Carrie Schnepf implemented. Its focus is agritourism, but it’s also a working farm. One evening, Carrie invited us to a farm to table dinner, where we picked our own veggies from her garden. This is an experience that you can add to your stay, and I highly recommend it.

While we learned how to make fresh bread and make the best kale chips (the key is to twist the kale!), all of the scraps we would throw away at home, the tops of the beets and carrots, went into a bin for the animals.

Schnepf Farms

Carrie Schnepf has seemingly boundless energy, working all day on the farm with a love for her produce and animals that is palpable. You can’t help but want to start a garden and make your own bread after spending an afternoon with her. The animals include rescue deer, which guests are free to visit. They also have a drive-in movie theater, and a line of little shops that look like an old town. (The sweet shop and bakery are must visits.)

While the farm has been kept for generations, the Schnepfs have also expanded and changed with the times. A few years ago they sold part of their property to the Queen Creek Olive Mill, and it’s now an adjacent agritourism destination that deserves a visit as well. I learned how to look for the best olive oil on the shelf at home, but we were able to purchase their products and have them shipped back. Of course, farm grown products almost always taste better than mass produced. The Queen Creek Olive Mill is a completely separate entity, but it sits next door to and serves as a wonderful compliment to Schnepf Farms.

While there are many things to see in the Mesa area, it’s worth the 25 mile drive to Schnepf Farms, whether you drop in for a quick visit or plan on staying a while. I definitely hope to return with my family and friends.

Keri Lumm is a professional chatterbox who loves watching TV & movies, reading about pop culture, and gawking at any craziness on the internet. You can follow Keri on Twitter.

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