I was delighted to discover that an official food holiday falls on my birthday--tomorrow, May 20.
No, not National Fettucine Alfredo Day, National Cream-Filled Donut Day, or National Onion Rings Day--yes, they're all real!--but Pick Strawberries Day.
It is, of course, peak season for the fruit right now (indeed, May is National Strawberry Month). Locally grown strawbs are available everywhere, with some of the plumpest, juiciest specimens being sold at the farmers' markets.
But if you really want to celebrate tomorrow by getting down 'n' dirty and picking your own, head to Tanaka Farms, an organic, family-owned farm that runs strawberry-picking tours.
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Bookings are required for weekday tours (Tuesday to Friday) as times vary, but at weekends they're held regularly (reservations only necessary for groups of ten or more), at 9.30am, 11:00am, 1:00pm and 2:30pm.
If that sounds too much like hard work, stop by anyway and pick up something from Tanaka's onsite produce stand.
And what's coming up on Thursday? National Strawberries and Cream Day, of course!
Tanaka Farms, 5380 3/4 University Dr., Irvine, (949) 653-2100/reservations (714) 968-6588. Tours cost $13 (free for children aged 2 and under).