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They’re sweet, red…and Ventura County’s top crop!

California Strawberry Festival returns on May 18 and 19
Caroline Feraday
California Strawberry Festival returns on May 18 and 19

A festival celebrating all things strawberry returns to the South Coast.

It’s been a part of the community for 38 years and strawberries are the focus as the annual festival for the fruit returns.

"The strawberry crop in Ventura County represents about $500 million a year, and the weather here is ideal for strawberries," explained Dean Kato, from the California Strawberry Festival.

As well as plenty of edible - and drinkable - strawberry delights, Kato says it’s a huge fundraiser for non-profits in the region.

"We've raised just under $5 million for local organizations. A lot of the food vendors are nonprofit organizations, and that's how they get their funding for their years - to have their strawberry smoothie booth or their Bueno funnel cakes," said Kato.

The California Strawberry Festival is at Ventura County Fairgrounds on May 18 and 19.

Caroline joined KCLU in October 2020. She won LA Press Club's Audio Journalist of the Year Award in 2022 and 2023.

Since joining the station she's won 10 Golden Mike Awards, 5 Los Angeles Press Club Awards, 2 National Arts & Entertainment Awards and a Regional Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Writing.

She started her broadcasting career in the UK, in both radio and television for BBC News, 95.8 Capital FM and Sky News and was awarded the Prince Philip Medal for her services to radio and journalism in 2007.

She has lived in California for eleven years and is both an American and British citizen - and a very proud mom to her daughter, Elsie.