By Sandy Zimmerman
(Photos by Sandy Zimmerman)
The unique Oak Glen village offers stage shows, revolutionary war re-enactments and so much more. In addition to all of the entertainment, the orchards and farms provide visitors a chance to pick their own apples, strawberries, raspberries and other fruits.
Devin Riley, owner/ operator of Los Rios Rancho took us on a tour of his apple orchards.
This journalist felt, “I’m a city gal and buy my fruit at the grocery. It is exciting that we can pick our own here.”
Devin explained. “That is the name of the game out here, seeing what rural life is like. People from the cities do not have that experience very often.
In Oak Glen, the specialty is apples on the menu. We grow a lot of Heirloom and new varieties up here. This as the largest apple growing area in southern California. There is nothing like getting a fresh apple off the tree.
We have a great tradition and added interactive activities for families and some new features as well.
The apples are small now, they grew from blossom to harvest in September and October when they are ready for picking.
Our trees range from dwarf size 7-8 feet trees, semi-dwarf 10-12 feet and seedlings can grow up to 30 feet tall.
Back in the old days, you see pictures of the pioneers with tall ladders. We do not do that any more.
Some of these trees are very old. A lot of trees date back to the 1880’s. My dad has some trees native to Oak Glen called the Glen Seedling dating back to 1887 and they are still producing apples.
Our large packing house was built in 1906 and is still in use. We process, clean, sort, grade, box and bag the apples there. This is the oldest continuously operated packing house in California. Visitors take tours through the fall.
Visitors can watch us make apple cider. We have a large hydraulic press. The Palmer press is historic dating back to the 1930’s. It still presses around a 100 gallons an hour.
There are smaller presses for people to press their own apple cider, a gallon at a time.
We also offer hayrides, wagon tours and sleds for the winter if we can catch the snow just right.”
Rileys at Los Rios Rancho in Oak Glen, California. For information, call (909)-797-1005. www.losriosrancho.com
Award winning Sandy Zimmerman is a syndicated columnist featuring Show and Dining reviews, Travel, Health, Spas, Luxury, Cars and more. Sandy is talk show host of the Las Vegas Today Show programs and Discover the Ultimate Vacation travel specials. If you want to suggest topics for articles, for information or to ask any questions about Sandy’s articles, call (702)-731-6491. firstname.lastname@example.org
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