History of Soergel Orchards

Our family farm’s history began in the mid 1850’s when a German immigrant by the name of John Conrad Soergel settled on this very spot and began planting apple trees.  The apples were sold wholesale for the first half of the 1900’s, but in the mid 1960’s a severe spring frost left very few apples on the trees.  At this time, Warren and I decided it was not worth the trip to town everyday to sell the few apples we had.  We started our own roadside stand at the corner of Brandt School Road and Wexford Bayne Road (now Route 910).  When the business outgrew the original building, a larger stand was built.  Then, in 1973, Interstate 79 claimed 14 acres of apples.  Nevertheless, our family felt it was time for further expansion.  In the early 1970’s, the present market was established.

Today, our immediate family includes myself, Jean Soergel, four children and their spouses, thirteen grandchildren and their spouses, and seven great-grandchildren.  The patriarch of the Soergel family, my husband Warren, passed away in September 2010 at the age of 86.  Our children include Reed and his wife Danetta, Randy and his wife Beth, Richard and his wife Mary Kay, and Linda and her husband Larry.   Our grandchildren include Katie and Eric, along with Eric’s wife Megan, who all help to manage the market.   Adam, who is married to Nicole, finds his niche in growing the vegetables that we sell in our market, with the help of Katie’s husband Greg.  Andrew and his wife Krissy live in North Carolina and are both school nurses.  Leisl is serving an Americorps term as a Site Supervisor for the St. Bernard Project in New Orleans.   Deonna is completing her degree at Penn State.  Tessa is managing our Gift Barn while her husband Bill concentrates on managing our produce department.  Annie and her husband John both have careers in Maryland.  Meredith is a nurse in Eastern PA where she lives with her husband Casey.  Warren graduated from Penn State and is now raising cattle.   Peter is an assistant wine maker at a vineyard in California.  Amy developed and opened Naturally Soergel’s in 2009.   Cameron is working on his degree in Ohio.   Our great-grandchildren include Jeana, Ethan, Mia, Abbey, Wyatt, Tennyson, and Kiptyn all under the age of five!  Because our children and grandchildren have continued the farm and marketing, the business has continued to grow and hopefully will do so for some time to come.

Our farm consists of 450 acres in several different locations.  The original house, located next to the market, burned to the ground in 1911, but was rebuilt on the same foundation.  Around the market we have planted a variety of fruit trees, mostly apple, but also cherry, plum and peach.  Richard and Mary Kay live off of Wexford Run Road and have many varieties of apple trees on their farm.  Both Reed and Danetta and Linda and Larry own farms one mile apart in Connoquenessing Township in Butler County.  The corn, pumpkins, more peaches and many of the garden vegetables are grown at these farms.   Reed and Danetta also raise our farm fresh turkeys for Thanksgiving.  Randy and Beth live around the corner from the market and their main interest is the greenhouse end of the business. Randy started with several greenhouses as a complement to the market in 1980.  Since then, the Garden Center and other greenhouses have been added.

In 1986 we began our own rack and cloth cider press, which Larry operates.  He presses at least two times a week and more often in the fall.  We also supply apple cider to Arrowhead Wine Cellars who produce our delicious apple wine that we sell in our wine shop.   A pasteurizer was added in 1997 to ensure a completely safe product for our customers.  The fall of 1987 saw the expansion to a full-scale bakery and deli department.  Delicious freshly baked pies, cookies and pastries are available seven days a week.

Naturally Soergel’s was opened in the Spring of 2009 to include a full line of wheat-free, gluten-free, allergen-free, natural products to meet the growing special dietary needs of our community.  Our newest addition, in the fall of 2010, was the opening of our furniture room, housing beautifully crafted pieces from the Pennsylvania and Ohio Amish.

As you can see, our whole family is involved in our operation.  Our extended family includes our employees, all of whom we consider one of our greatest assets.  Without their help and input, we couldn’t offer you, the customers, the products that we do.

We take great pride in the quality of our produce and we work long hours to bring it to you at its very best.  Be sure to visit us year-round for the highest quality and variety of produce available.  We would like to thank you for your continued patronage throughout the years.