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Loveland’s Cherry Industry

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Loveland’s cherry industry

Once upon a time, Loveland was the heart of Colorado’s thriving cherry industry. That began in the late 1800s, then by the 1900s, there were ten thousand acres planted in Montmorency and Morello sour cherries. Those orchards raked in millions in early 20th century dollars, and gave jobs to nearly every local family. Cherry stands and canning factories popped up around town. In 1930, Loveland had its first Cherry Blossom Festival. Mrs. A. V. Benson invented cherry cider about the same time, and soon the federal government was requisitioning Colorado cherries to feed the troops.

But after a hard freeze in 1954 damaged and killed many trees, orchards were neglected. Cheaper fruit started coming in from out of state, and Colorado's cherry industry faded. But Loveland continues to celebrate this sweet chapter of its history every summer with a cherry pie festival.

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Colorado Postcards

Colorado Postcards are snapshots of our colorful state in sound. They give brief insights into our people and places, our flora and fauna, and our past and present, from every corner of Colorado.