Central coast’s tiniest town: In Harmony, the melody is sound of silence

HVCreameryNews

For years, Harmony has boasted that it has a population of 18 people.

It’s on all the T-shirts and the coffee mugs and the refrigerator magnets. Harmony, population 18.

That appears to be an exaggeration, because the 2010 census listed the population as 2. And that’s an exaggeration, too. The actual population of Harmony is 1.

“That would be me,” said Aarika Wells, who lives in a white house on the main street, which, in addition to being the main street, is the only street. “I can’t think of a better place to be stranded.”

Wells, a retired preschool teacher, is the official caretaker of Harmony. Her duties consist of making sure there are enough coffee pods in the town’s official Welcome Center, just across the street. The welcome center, a small room with some chairs and some Harmony brochures, is self-serve. With a population of 1, there is not a large workforce to call upon.

Continue reading: https://www.sfchronicle.com/travel/article/Central-coast-s-tiniest-town-In-Harmony-the-13146871.php

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National Ice Cream Sandwich Day is Today!

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There are many days worth celebrating (National Ice Cream for Breakfast Day, anyone?!) but National Ice Cream Sandwich Day definitely tops the list as one of our favorites. Think about it: when choosing a dessert, you’re generally given a few options with the caveat that you can choose only one. But with an ice cream sandwich? You’re totally beating the system! Not only do you get to enjoy two soft-baked cookies, but you get to indulge in everyone’s favorite part: the rich and creamy ice cream center! You get two desserts for the price of one!

How Did The Ice Cream Sandwich Get its Start?

While ice cream sandwiches originally called for sponge cake, using cookies was a trend that began in our own state of California. In 1928, a San Francisco ice cream vendor sandwiched ice cream between two oatmeal cookies, topping the confection with a chocolate coating. People clamored to get a taste of this sweet new frozen treat. After all, what better vehicle for enjoying the ice cream they already loved than putting it on a cookie? The rest, as they say, is history.

How To Construct The Perfect Ice Cream Sandwich

Here at Harmony Valley Creamery we know that the most important component of the ice cream sandwich is the ice cream, and the quality of that ice cream can make or break your ice cream sandwich. Fortunately, with our udderly awesome lineup of homemade ice cream flavors, you can’t go wrong! We take pride in making only the best local ice cream for your Ice Cream Sandwich Day enjoyment. While the creation possibilities are virtually endless, here are a few of our favorite DIY mash-ups.

  • The PB&C: Harmony Chapel Chocolate sandwiched between peanut butter cookies
  • The Wholesome: Blue Door Butter Pecan sandwiched between oatmeal raisin cookies (It’s got nuts, fruit and oatmeal so it must be healthy, right?)
  • The Grasshopper: Doo Dah Mint Chip sandwiched between chocolate-chocolate chip cookies
  • The Cookie Monster: Local Yodelers Cookies and Cream sandwiched between chocolate chip cookies
  • The Rugged Californian: Mayor Freddy’s Vanilla sandwiched between trail mix cookies
  • The Chocolate-Covered Strawberry: School’s Out Strawberry sandwiched between chocolate cookies

What are your favorite ice cream sandwich combinations? We’d love to hear how you celebrate National Ice Cream Day with Harmony Valley Creamery’s signature craft ice cream flavors!

 

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Come to the Harmony Wine and Beer Festival

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Harmony wine beer festival

Do love good food? Award-winning wine? Craft beer? Local Ice Cream, awesome music and helping babies?? Well, we have the event for you! Wine, beer, entertainment, food, charity and ice cream; you’ll find them all at the very first Harmony Wine and Beer Festival.

On Saturday, August 4th, visit the small town of Harmony, CA (between Cayucos and Cambria on scenic Highway 1) for pours from over fifteen local wineries and breweries in San Luis Obispo County. These include Castoro Cellars, Cayucos Cellars, Harmony Cellars, Moonstone Cellars, Cass Winery, Niner Wine Estates, Still Waters Vineyard, Eos Winery, Bodega De Edgar, Summerwood Winery, Red Soles Winery, Chamisal Vineyards, Twin Coyotes Winery, Phantom Rivers Winery, Libertine Brewing, Three Stacks and a Rock Brewery, and more! Drink vendors add up to 18, kind of like the population of the town of Harmony… see what we did there?

A number of food trucks will also be there, ready to serve you as well including The Hurricane Kitchen, Boni’s Tacos, our very own vintage Scoop Truck, serving up cones and cups of local ice cream.

Live entertainment for the festival will be provided by Bear Market Riot, a self-described “power-folk Americana” duo from right here in our own backyard. They even just won the SLO Times 2018 Best of SLO “Best Band”!

The Harmony Wine and Beer Festival is a charitable event that benefits Infant Essentials, a local nonprofit that works to provide much needed infant supplies to homeless and low-income residents of San Luis Obispo County. Each ticket purchased helps Infant Essentials provide assistance to those in need.

Tickets to this unique, local festival are $55 per person. Get your tickets, and join us on August 4, 2018, from 1-4pm for an afternoon you won’t forget.

While visiting, don’t forget to stop by Harmony Glassworks and Harmony Pottery for a handmade piece of artwork for your home. You can even try your hand at glassblowing after sampling the festival fare!

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National Ice Cream Day is July 15!

HVCreameryNews

There are so many holidays to keep track of that it’s only natural for one or two to fall through the cracks. However, if you’re a fan of sweet treats, and you’d like to celebrate them, then you should mark your calendar to be sure you don’t miss out on National Ice Cream Day!

Wait, We Have One Of Those?

We do, in fact, have a National Ice Cream Day. Not only that, but we’ve had it since 1984 when President Ronald Reagan declared that the third Saturday of July would be dedicated to the celebration of summertime’s coolest cream. Which means that, come that particular summer weekend, there will be all sorts of events involving sundaes, cones, soft serve, classic, and a dozen other varieties of ice cream.

Why Did We Dedicate An Entire Day To Ice Cream?

Well, aside from ice cream’s obvious deliciousness, there was a deeper reason for Reagan’s proclamation that the third Saturday in the middle of the summer would be National Ice Cream Day. Because at least ten percent of all the milk produced by U.S. dairy farmers goes into making ice cream. That is a lot of milk, and Reagan wanted to do his part as president to stimulate the economy by making sure as many people had a reason to go get some ice cream as possible.

So, while there is definitely an economic undertone to the day according to NBC News, that hasn’t stopped us from reveling in the sheer pleasure that comes from having a reason to eat ice cream on a particular day… as if we really need a reason in the high heat of July.

How will you celebrate? Remember, you can pick up a pint from one of our many central coast retail locations, or visit the Scoop Truck in Harmony, CA every Saturday and Sunday from 1pm – 4pm or find us at the Thursday Farmer’s Markets in Morro Bay and San Luis Obispo! For more information about National Ice Cream Day, as well as about all things ice cream related, all you have to do is contact us today!

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Summer’s Here: The Hottest Way to Stay Cool

HVCreameryChillin' in Harmony

Summer Ice Cream

Summer is sizzling, but folks in the tiny hamlet of Harmony enjoy an ideal 75F. In fact, we stay cool all year long, but it’s not only the ocean breezes, it’s the craft ice cream too!

Everyone agrees: and besides who doesn’t want to find themselves in Harmony ice cream is the hottest way to stay cool. The only question is: which craft made flavor is the coolest?

Can you detect the differences in cooling potential between Local Yodelers Cookies ‘n Cream and Blue Door Butter Pecan, or any of our other udderly awesome flavors? Sample them all if you can handle the craft ice cream side effects like contentment, extreme happiness, and cravings for more?  You might need to try them all twice.

So as the weather gets hotter and hotter and your looking to cool off, come to the coast and order yourself a scoop or two. The scoop truck is open daily during the Summer months.

No matter which flavor proves itself to be the coolest, eating locally made craft ice cream is the best way to spend your summer.

Be on the lookout for our Scoop Truck for more opportunities to cool down. It will be hanging out in Harmony all summer long and it may show up at a special event near you!

If you have questions about the truck’s whereabouts or are interested in the cooling powers of ice cream, contact us.

Please note: Ice cream does not protect you from the sun and we do not recommend slathering craft ice cream on your skin as a sunblock. It is ineffective at best, and, at worst, a tragic waste of delicious ice cream.

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Celebrate National Chocolate Ice Cream Day

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Harmony Chapel ChocolateIf you’ve ever thought to yourself, “I like my holidays to be specific, on Thursdays, and about ice cream,” then we’ve got some good news. National Chocolate Ice Cream Day is coming up on Thursday, June 7!

We love celebrating any ice cream holiday, but National Chocolate Ice Cream Day is a little extra special because, well, chocolate.

The International Dairy Foods Association says chocolate is the second most popular ice cream flavor in the United States. (And they know their dairy facts!) The most popular flavor is vanilla, but it has its own holiday. (July 23, if you’d like to mark your calendar.)

So let’s bring the attention back to where it belongs this June 7, and that’s on craft chocolate ice cream. You know where to find it: Harmony Valley Creamery!

Let’s hear it for the honored pint, Harmony Chapel Chocolate. We’ve known since we crafted that first small batch that our local chocolate ice cream would be deserving of its own holiday. Scoop by scoop, we’ll be celebrating on June 7, and we hope you’ll join us.

Here’s how you can participate in National Chocolate Ice Cream Day:

  • Visit the Scoop Truck! We’ll be at the SLO Farmer’s Market that evening (and every Thursday all glorious summer long), serving chocolate scoop after chocolate scoop. You can also find us at the Morro Bay Farmer’s Market on Thursday afternoons.
  • Pick Up a Pint! Visit a local market to take home a few pints of your own Harmony Chapel Chocolate. Remember, holidays are for sharing.
  • Tell Us What You Love About National Chocolate Ice Cream Day! How are you celebrating? Tell us on Facebook or Instagram at @hvcreamery. We’ll hit ya back if our hands aren’t busy holding chocolate ice cream cones. (Common problem around here.)

National Chocolate Ice Cream Day only comes around once a year, but scoop truck is here for you all year long. Celebrate big on June 7, and we’ll help you keep the celebration going for another 12 months. Questions about our chocolate ice cream? Contact us! It’s one of our favorite topics.

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I Scream, You Scream… for Local Ice Cream

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Local Ice Cream

Despite the well-established fact that we all scream for local ice cream, we’ve found ice-cream eaters to be an exceptionally low key bunch. Maybe because their mouths are full of ice cream. It’s awfully hard to yell when that Local Yodeler’s Cookies ‘N Cream ice cream has taken up its temporary residence in your mouth.

Still, we understand the sentiment. It’s hard not to get excited when you see the Scoop Truck shining in the distance, knowing you’re mere moments away from Harmony Valley Creamery’s udderly awesome craft ice cream.

Usually, screaming for ice cream is pure fun, but every now and then, it’s an opportunity to make real ice cream change in your community.

For example:

  • If someone takes a lick of your cone when you’re not looking, you might scream for ice cream. (Just kidding. Sharing is caring, people. Even, or maybe especially, when it comes to ice cream.)
  • If you notice your bowl is empty, you might scream for ice cream.
  • If you realize your favorite local grocer does not carry Harmony Valley craft ice cream in the freezer section, you might scream for ice cream.

That’s right, folks. You no longer have to wait for the Scoop Truck to satisfy your craft ice cream cravings. Stores, markets, and restaurants from Santa Maria to Cambria are proud to offer Harmony Valley Creamery ice cream to their customers.

Is your favorite among them? If not, the time has come! Talk (you might not want to scream if they’re standing right in front of you) to the store mangers, your favorite checker or owners about adding Harmony Valley Creamery local ice cream to their offerings. You can promise them at least one happy customer—and we’re willing to bet on many, many more happy ice cream customers.

Do you know of a store or restaurant where people are screaming for craft ice cream? Contact us and let us know! Nothing makes us happier than getting the best ice cream into people’s hands. (Except maybe getting that ice cream into their mouths. And ours.)

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Bringing Back the Dairy Farming History of Harmony

HVCreameryChillin' in Harmony

DairyThe town of Harmony may be small, but it has a big history when it comes to dairy farming.

Let’s go back to the 1700s. (Don’t worry. We won’t be there all day.) In the late part of that century, cattle first arrived in California, bringing with them the potential for some of the best craft ice cream you can imagine.

The California dairy industry was originally centered around San Francisco because of the great pasture land and high demand for delicious dairy products. Then, one of California’s prominent dairy families, the Steele family, moved to SLO County in 1866 and brought the industry to life in the area. Between 1900 and 1910, creameries and dairy co-ops started popping up all over the state. Harmony, always a trendsetter, opened the Harmony Valley Creamery Association Co-Op in 1901.

At the time, milk, cheese, and butter were their primary concerns. The operation closed in 1955 before they could discover craft ice cream flavors like Doo Dah Mint ‘n Chip.

And that brings us to the present with the Harmony Valley Creamery!

The creamery is satisfying the dire need for fresh, local ice cream, but the vision doesn’t stop with incredible flavors and a vintage Scoop Truck. (Although, really, with that kind of accomplishment, what more could someone expect from you?)

We dream of bringing dairy farming back to this tiny town.  What better way to shine light on the history of our charming hamlet while making craft ice cream with the most local milk we can find?

Don’t be surprised some day when you see beautiful, happy dairy cows grazing in the fields and hills nearby when you drive into town. You “herd” it here first.

Questions about owning a dairy farm? Actually, we do know a bit about that, so we might be able to help. But we really shine when it comes to ice cream questions. Contact us and ask!

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Happy Cows Jump for Joy on Koslapp Day

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Happy Cows - Koslapp

Winter can be long and dark for many parts of the world. Imagine how long and gloomy it would be if you were kept in a stable or barn the entire snowy season?! Well that yikes!-feeling is exactly how the dairy cows of Sweden feel every year. Winter is harsh in the Scandinavian country and milk farmers keep their cows inside to shield them from the elements. But something exceedingly wonderful happens when spring comes…

Koslapp!

The cow-release (or “Koslapp” in Swedish) is an annual event in this northern country. But it’s not just for farmers and agricultural workers anymore. The urban public has made Koslapp a regular family and tourist event! Traveling from their respective metropolitan jungles, people make their way to the peaceful countryside to witness dozens and dozens of happy cows jumping for joy as the barn doors open broadly and triumphantly and they are released from their winter confines.

As we imagined before, being cooped up in the cold dark would be no fun, even if it was good for us. But now imagine the elation of seeing emerald-colored, lush grass and open spaces for the first time in months! The reaction? Pure happiness! The freed cows kick their back legs, wiggle, run, frolic, and leap at one another playfully. This is how they show they are feeling goooood! The watching crowds laugh and point. For them, this is a celebration of the coming of a new season and they get the privilege of observing it with the fun-loving dairy cows of the country. You can watch the ecstatic reaction of the cows for yourself on this USA Today article published online; it is sure to make you smile widely!

Koslapp not only warms the hearts of people young and old, but it also brings wonderful awareness to the farming community across the world. Many dairy farmers in Sweden are using Koslapp and social media to help the urban population understand exactly where their food is sourced and how. When we get a glimpse into the dedication and passion embodied by our world’s farmers, we start to understand their importance in our life.

 

Here at Harmony Valley Creamery, we love happy cows and we love happy people! Bringing that bubbling-up sensation of laughter and cheerfulness inside a person is exactly why we make taste-bud tingling, craft ice cream. And celebrating the heritage of dairy farming is also important to us. Our little town and family creamery was founded by Swiss-Italian dairy farmers in 1869. If we had been alive back then, we would have ran and frolicked with the cows on their “Koslapp” day as well!!

Today when you pick up a spoon or reach for a sugar cone topped with rich, cold cream, think of our cousins and the happy cows all over the world and in Sweden, jumping for joy that spring has finally come! (We won’t tell if you jump and frolic a little yourself as well!)

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SLO Farmer’s Market To Debut Scoop Truck

HVCreameryNews, Truckin' Around

SLO Farmer's Market Scoop Truck

What better way to spend a summer evening than browsing the local goodies at the SLO Farmer’s Market?  From chocolate to seafood, cheese to kombucha, veggies to cookies to jerky, you can find just about anything you’d like to snack on or take home. For 34 years, the market has been a gathering place for community members and tourists who want to enjoy music and activities and meet local business owners while they shop for fresh produce, baked goods, and more.

More, you say? What is this “more” you speak of?

For one thing, it’s ice cream! (And more ice cream!)

That’s right! Starting on April 5th, Harmony Valley Creamery will be at the SLO Farmer’s Market every Thursday from 6:00-9:00 pm, scooping up cones and cups of udder deliciousness. You know, like we do.

Here are just a few of the activities you can participate in at the farmer’s market every week:

  • Eating ice cream and shopping for sandwich ingredients.
  • Buying a scoop for your date while listening to live music.
  • Getting a double scoop and checking out STEAM Alley on the last Thursday of the month for interactive learning in science, technology, engineering, art, and math. Great for all ages!
  • Mixing craft ice cream flavors (like School’s Out Strawberry with Local Yodelers Cookies ‘n Cream, or Mayor Freddy’s Vanilla Bean with Blue Door Butter Pecan) while checking out the market’s expansion onto Chorro Street, starting in July.
  • Enjoying a craft ice cream cone and getting a pint to take home.

The options are nearly endless!

We don’t want to take credit for making the SLO Farmer’s Market awesome, because it has always been pretty awesome. But we are adding some seriously delicious craft ice cream to the mix, but you be the judge.

Come see us at the SLO Farmer’s Market every Thursday! You can’t miss us: we’ll be the crew in the vintage Scoop Truck.

Ice cream questions? We’ve got answers! Contact us any time.

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