Finding a family-friendly shopping experience is like going on a multi-generational scavenger hunt. You’d like everyone to find something on their list, and you want family members of all ages to enjoy themselves so they’ll want to hop in the car for a return trip.
Quite surprisingly, two intriguing retail destinations will appeal to everyone in your family – and these distinctive shops are located in beautiful Blue Ridge, Georgia – just a stone’s throw from Murphy, NC. Even better, both stores are open all year round. Read on for all the pertinent details, and gather your family for a trip they’ll remember for years.
8660 Blue Ridge Drive Blue Ridge, GA 706-632-3411
Open 7 days a week from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Closed on Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day
A visit to Mercier Orchards is like an extended trip to the candy store – for children and adults alike. When you swing into Mercier’s sprawling parking lot, you’re surrounded by acres upon acres of gently rolling hills that comprise this fourth-generation family farm. During the growing season, you’ll see colorful peach and apple orchards, with lush blueberry bushes and fragrant strawberry fields located nearby.
Enticing Market Store
Shopping at Mercier’s Market Store is considerably more fun than visiting your local grocery store. For starters, every tempting product is geared toward your tasting, snacking, or baking pleasure. You’ll find fruit butters, jellies, honey, salsas, sauces, dressings, crunchy snacks, muffin mixes, cider, and much more. Toward the back of the store, you’ll spot the colorful produce section that perfectly showcases Mercier Orchards’ currently available fruit. Try a delicious free sample while you decide which bag or box you’ll take home.
Sweet Treats in the Bakery
Mercier’s Bakery is a perfect place to induge your sweet tooth. Besides freshly baked breads, you’ll find cakes, cookies, muffins, and donuts. Several varieties of fruit pies also vie for your attention. If you’d like several locally baked pies for your Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, you can special order them here. And finally, save room for an award-winning fried pie. Each miniature fruit-filled treat makes a delectable snack or sweet ending to tonight’s meal.
Popular Market Cafe
Take a break from shopping, and enjoy a tasty breakfast or lunch at Mercier’s Market Cafe. This on-premises eatery serves breakfast from 7-11 a.m. before switching to lunch fare from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Seasonal U-Pick Events
There are few things more satisfying than picking your own fresh produce. Bring your family or friends, pack some sunscreen and water, and enjoy a one-of-a-kind day trip. From approximately May through September, Mercier’s offers weekend U-Pick events for fruit currently in season.
On Saturdays and Sundays from 10-4, visitors are welcome to purchase a tote and enjoy a wagon excursion to the apple orchards, strawberry fields, or blueberry bushes. Please note: Before you make the trip, call for current availability. If the fruit supply unexpectedly runs out, or Mercier’s employees are out picking fruit for the market, U-pick may be cancelled that day.
New Farm Winery
If you’re a fan of hard-pressed beverages, try Mercier Orchards’ new hard-pressed cider and wine selections. In fact, Mercier’s is the only Georgia apple orchard that grows, presses, ferments, and bottles its own products. If you’re of legal age, come and sample a variety (or two) during store tasting hours: Monday – Saturday 11-6, and Sunday 12:30-6.
Farm Events Sampler
Besides serving up a veritable feast of produce and food products, Mercier’s hosts a variety of family-friendly events every year. Tractor tours are offered during most seasons, along with a Kids’ Adventure Race and other activities for the younger set. In colder weather, bring the kids to a Children’s Bakery Class or other indoor event. In short, Mercier’s has plenty of appeal for visitors of all ages.
Furry Family Members
For your canine companions, Mercier’s provides a pet-friendly deck with a water source. However, family pets are not permitted in the market or in the orchard. Leashed service pets are welcome in both locations.
TASTE OF AMISH COUNTRY STORE
New Location: 1412 Appalachian Highway Blue Ridge, GA 706-632-8989
Monday through Saturday:10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Sunday: Closed
If you’ve always wanted to visit an Amish market, but didn’t want to travel for several hours to get there, you’re in luck. Taste of Amish Country Store in nearby Blue Ridge, Georgia offers an expansive menu of Amish-sourced products.
Established several years ago by the Rush family, Taste of Amish attracts visitors from around the mountain region. The store sprang up from the family’s conviction that many Amish products were a healthier choice than similar items with questionable ingredients. To introduce visitors to Amish tastes, store staff encourages hungry customers to sample a tempting snack (or two) while in the store.
A Colorful Feast for Your Senses
Arriving at Taste of Amish Country Store, visitors are drawn to the building’s rustic stone and wood facade. Inside, the store’s warm wood décor and easy-to-navigate layout hint of a delightfully different shopping experience.
Colorful displays of jams, jellies, spreads, and preserves quickly grab your attention. Baking mixes and spices, soups and bases, and staples such as oatmeal and noodles are also on display. The refrigerated meat and cheese case is a treat for the eyes, and fragrant soaps and lotions offer a relaxing respite from hectic schedules. In other words, Taste of Amish Country Store has something for everybody.
Satisfying Sandwiches and Wraps
After you’ve finished your shopping excursion, treat yourself to a delicious sandwich or wrap at Taste of Amish’s in-store deli. Begin with your choice of fresh-baked bread, add a meat and cheese, and adorn your creation with a dressing and toppings. While you enjoy your meal, pull out your planning calendar, and schedule another Blue Ridge shopping trip from Murphy, NC sometime soon.
The Poltrock Team – REMAX Mountain Properties – Murphy NC – www.ILoveMurphy.com – Call us Toll Free at 1-866-Murphy-NC or 1-866-687-7496 – Murphy’s #1 Real Estate Team