ELLERBE — The “World’s Largest Strawberry” is once again up for North Carolina’s best roadside attraction.
Strange Carolinas announced on March 11 that it was accepting votes for its Best of N.C. Awards.
Listed among the finalists for Best Roadside Attraction in the Strange North Carolina division is The Berry Patch, owned by Lee and Amy Berry.
The couple opened the produce and ice cream stand in 2002 a mile south from its current location. However, the state bought the land for the U.S. 220/Interstate 73/74 widening project and the Berry’s moved to Exit 25 on the corner of U.S. 220 and Cargo Road in late 2012, re-opening the following year.
The Berry Patch sells a variety of local fruits and vegetables along with jams, jellies and other N.C.-made products — and, of course, ice cream from the giant strawberry.
It gained national notoriety in 2014 when Jon Stewart, then host of Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show,” declared it as “The World’s Largest Strawberry” rather than a site in Iowa that made the same claim.
In recent years, the Berrys have hosted outdoor concerts during the summer as well as Independence Day fireworks.
This year, the competition includes many of the same attractions the stand was up against that year:
- Cryptozoology & Paranormal Museum in Littleton
- Fields of the Wood (the world’s largest 10 Commandments) in Murphy
- House Of Mugs in Collettesville
- Mystery Hill in Blowing Rock
- Shell-Shaped Service Station in Winston-Salem
- Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park in Wilson
- Wally’s Service Station in Mount Airy
- World’s Largest Chest Of Drawers in High Point
Other categories in the Strange North Carolina division are best ghost story, urban legend, paranormal team and ghost walk/tour.
The whirligig park is also up for Best Urban Legend, along with the Beast of Bladenboro and the Devil’s Tramping Ground in Siler City, among others.
There are several other divisions in the Strange Carolinas contest:
- Art – Best muralist, city for murals, book store
- Music and Entertainment – Best N.C. music festival, radio station, music venue, bar, podcast
- Shopping – Best book store, record store, thrift store, oddities store
- Food – Best barbecue, brewery, burger, coffee shop, bakery, donuts, food truck, fried chicken
Voting is open at strangecarolinas.com until 10 p.m. March 25 and individuals can vote as many times as they’d like, according to the website.