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The Linn's Story...

EARLY IN THEIR MARRIAGE IN 1971, John and Renee Linn, who then lived in Lawrence, Kansas, decided to pursue their dreams to live out their lives on a farm. For years they had driven through the Midwest farmlands admiring the scenery and longing for a healthy life working together as a family. With their minds made up, these recent college graduates bundled up their newborn son Justin, packed their books and student loans into a '64 VW bug and headed for Denver. They were determined to make enough money to buy into their version of the American dream.

      Unable to find a job in a bad national economy, John borrowed $750 to put a down payment on a service station where he not only sold gas at the height of the oil crisis but specialized in foreign car repair. There was plenty of work — often 110 hours a week! The couple began to plan in earnest for a farm by deciding that in five years they would leave Denver with their family and a nest egg.

The young Linn's were featured in Sunset Magazine's article about California family farms


In 1975, the Linn's visited Cambria, California for the
wedding of a high school buddy whose parents had a small farm on Santa Rosa Creek Road. While there, they fell in love with the pristine beauty, emerald green hills, and lush valley. As they were leaving for home back in Denver, their friend's mother pointed out a parcel across the road that was for sale. They drove past the property . . . just to look. But on the flight back to Denver, they couldn't get the beauty of Cambria's hills out of their heads. As soon as the plane landed, they called and bought the land over the phone. It was a crazy thing to do! They didn't have the down payment let alone the money to pay the mortgage and taxes. And things were even more complicated — the family had grown to include son Aaron, and Renee was pregnant with their third child, daughter Aimee. Undaunted, a year later the Linns sold everything and moved to California to begin the hard work of farm life. They had reached their five-year goal right on schedule!


When the Linns arrived in Cambria in 1977, they felt elated and carefree. Nothing could dampen their spirits. They moved a little (8' x 32') 1952 trailer onto the farm and all five Linns moved in. They refurbished an old well on the property, learned to run trenchers, drive tractors, plant fruit trees, and build water systems and fences.

     Both John and Renee worked on and off the farm to make ends meet. By 1979, it hit home that without doing something imaginative — and soon, they would not survive, let alone succeed. They needed a cash crop to give them desperately needed income or their farm dreams were doomed. They decided to open a Pick-Your-Own with berries, vegetables, and cut flowers.

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Many people came out to the farm, originally named Linn's Fruit Bin. The customers began
to request something to take home from the farm fruit stand. So, Renee turned her attention to creating Linn's Fruit Preserves. One flavor became a particular favorite with customers. It was based on a then unheard-of fruit -- the Olallieberry -- a cross of a blackberry and a raspberry. Soon that led to the creation of Linn's famous Olallieberry pie thanks to Renee's cooking magic. Linn's Fruit pies were widely embraced due to their quality and intense fresh fruit flavor, with low sugar content. This turned out to be the cornerstone of Linn's success.

     Over time, Renee expanded the use of the berries into many products for sale and created recipes highlighting the Olallieberry for dessert fillings, curds, jellies, sauces, fruit butters, baking mixes, teas, vinegars, and a wide array of desserts. She then began utilizing other types of fruit which added extensively to her product line.

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Linn's Restaurant opened its doors for the first time in Cambria in the summer of 1989. On Easter Sunday, 2006, a disastrous fire destroyed Linn's Restaurant. Linn's added an emergency expansion which included the shops and café located behind the restaurant on Bridge Street. The restaurant was remodeled and rebuilt in 20 months, opening in December 2007. The emergency expansion was retained and now thrives along with Linn's Gourmet Goods, Linn's À La Carte Boutique and Books, and Easy As Pie Café. Linn's has become an anchor in Downtown Cambria as an established tradition to visitors and locals alike.


After many years, the Original Farm Store was closed due to Covid in 2020. Then insurance
refused to cover the store for wildfire danger if the public were allowed onto the property.
With these restrictions, and now three generations living at the farm, Linn’s had no choice
but to close the popular Farm Store permanently.

Welcome and thank you for helping to create the iconic business that Linn’s has become!

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