Last season coming to an end

Wednesday, May 18, 2005
Two-year-old Owen Larsen made up the fourth generation at the Kennett Strawberry harvest. Pictured with Owen are his mother, Jennifer Kennett Larsen, and his grandfather, Fred Kennett. (Town Crier photo/Revis Blaylock)

The final days of the last season are underway at Kennett Strawberry Patch in Leachville. The Kennett family has been in the strawberry business for 55 years.

The business was started by Jimmy Kennett and the late Brian Kennett coming down through generations of Kennetts.

Jimmy's son, Fred Kennett, of Martin, Tenn., has been managing the strawberries for the last several years.

"We are going out on a good year," Fred said. "We have had lots of strawberries this year. It was a great crop. We will miss our customers who have been coming year after year."

Strawberries may last through the week and the strawberry patch opens early. Kennett said people are welcome to pick their own or buy from the shed.

Kennett has been dividing his time between home and the strawberry patch and has decided to call it quits for now.

It takes at least 90 days working with the strawberries and the harvest. His wife, Billie, takes a week's vacation each year to work in the strawberry harvest.

Kennett is a boat builder and has five grandchildren he enjoys spending time with.

His daughter, Jennifer Kennett Larsen, and grandson, Owen, of Indianapolis, Ind., were home for the last strawberry harvest.

Jennifer, like her father and other family members, grew up in the strawberry patches of Leachville. Her son is almost three years old and she said she is glad he got follow in the family tradition and pick berries at Kennett's Strawberry Patch.

"We had been talking about it and he was excited about picking the strawberries," she said.

Owen made up the fourth generation during the final harvest season.

"We want to thank everyone for supporting our strawberry patch through the years," Fred said. "We have had great customers."

Kennett's Strawberry Patch is located at 1809 South Main Street in Leachville. The telephone number is 539-6597.

Peggy McCoy, who has worked for the Kennetts since 1972, said she will miss the strawberries and the people. Through the years Peggy and Fred's mother, June, have spent a lot of hours working together in the strawberry shed.

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