September 14, 2019
By Dan Purkey
Have you ever walked into a business and immediately sensed generations of family history, and yet knew that they were still VERY up-to-date and relevant? That is exactly how I felt sitting down with three generations of the Herrick family: Vernon, Paula, JR, Briauna and Cameron (plus Lori and Stacie...not with us)!
As reviewed by customers: “Amazing family run farm with great local products...Beautiful Food, awesome people.”
Vernon (born in Minnesota) and Paula (a three generation Oregonian) originally met at Thurston High School, but fell in love at Lane Community College and married on September 16, 1967! Soon after uniting, they moved to Sunnyvale, CA. where Vernon worked for Lockheed on the Apollo Space Program (an antenna...that he worked on...is on the Moon!).
After Lockheed, Vernon joined the Air Force as radar repairman at the base in Lewiston, MT. Upon completing 4 years for our country, they moved back to the McKenzie Valley and Vernon went to work for Weyerhaeuser.
In 1980 (always having a passion for farming) Vernon and Paula bought some acreage and started Herrick Farms (initially the Endicott Farms). Their very first crop was cauliflower (planted by hand)! Today, they rent out 120 acres and personally farm 31 acres (almost totally automated).
In addition to unbelievable fruits and vegetables (no day-old corn and not sprayed!); they have kindergarten tours, pumpkin rides and (as avid Grange members) they provide tomato and marigold transplants for the Grange booth at AG Fest (Salem) in April!
I asked Vernon when he might retire, and his response was: “When I die!”
In the meantime, Vernon and Paula enjoy family and traveling. GOALS: Expand the fruit and vegetable stand.
541-741-1046 - 88088 Millican Rd. (Between Walterville and Cedar Flat). HOURS: May - Nov. - 7 days a week, 9 - 6 pm. Nov. - Dec. - 10 - 5pm. Jan. - April - Closed.