Families and friends alike enjoyed every bit of fun Friday with new carnival rides and a variety of strawberry-themed activities at the Strawberry Festival in Santa Maria Fairpark.
Those activities include a strawberry tasting challenge where tasters have a chance to try four different types of strawberries.
“This is one of the things I come here for, is to taste the strawberries,” said resident Marilyn Rivera. “I like to know what’s growing in our valley.”
Tasters had to rank each of the four types of strawberries. The berries came from Driscolls, Darensberries, Manzinita Berry Farms, and Mar Vista Berry. The challenges are held throughout the weekend.
Meanwhile, at the Strawberry Pavilion, kids learned how to make moon sand and extract DNA from strawberries with help from the Santa Maria Discovery Museum.
By mashing the strawberries down and mixing them with ingredients, the young scientists were able to extract the essence of the strawberry.
“I find that with kids the gross factor in a lot of ways is always a crowd pleaser,” said museum program director Amy Blasco.
And of course, a festival is no good without fun games and rides.
Edella Westerfield says she brought her family early to give the kids more time and space to try the rides.
“The earlier the better so they get a chance to do that run around from one place to another without having to wait for lines,” said Westerfield. “I’m glad just to see my kids smiling and laughing with their friends and cousins so it’s great.”