Press Release

Celebrating 50 Years - Shoreline Fruit, LLC Growers Honored as Grand Marshals of National Cherry Festival’s Heritage Parade

Traverse City, Michigan – June 28, 2019 --- Fifty years ago, college boys Gene, Dean and Norman Veliquette put a down-payment on a cherry farm in Suttons Bay, Michigan. Soon after, Fraternity brother, Bob Gregory, joined them in the operation. Bob’s brother, Don, followed right behind.

From that humble beginning, the families have grown Cherry Ke and Cherry Bay Orchards into one of the largest vertically integrated tart cherry farming operations in the country. In addition to growing cherries, the families pit and process cherries at Great Lakes Packing Co in Kewadin and Triple D Orchards in Empire. They also produce dried cherries, cherry juice, cherry concentrate and nutraceutical powder at the Shoreline Fruit operation in Williamsburg MI, which is now the largest tart cherry marketer in North America.

The operations grow cherries in Leelanau, Antrim and Grand Traverse counties in Northern Michigan and VanBuren and Cass counties in Southern Michigan. At cherry harvest time, the vertically integrated businesses employ over 600 people.

The family operations continue today with many of the siblings and heirs active in the operation. Siblings Jon Veliquette and Trudy Veliquette Cullimore are at Great Lakes Packing and Neva Veliquette is at Cherry Ke. Dean’s sons Bruce and Nels along with Gene’s son Tyler operate Cherry Ke. In Leelanau County, Don’s daughter and son-in-law, Emily and Mark Miezio, lead the Cherry Bay Orchards team.

To celebrate 50 years of partnership, growth, and community impact, the families will be honored as the Grand Marshals of the National Cherry Festival’s Heritage Parade.
Product of the U.S.A.

One of the founders stated “We are humbled and honored with this recognition. Raising our families on farms and being involved in our local communities has not only fit our Christian lifestyle well, but has been very rewarding and is something we hope can be passed on to future generations.”

The Consumer’s Energy Heritage Parade Presented by Hagerty Insurance will be held on Tuesday July, 2nd, 2019 stepping off at 6:30 p.m. This parade is focused on the rich history of this region with a spotlight on the cherry industry.

About Shoreline Fruit, LLC
Shoreline Fruit, LLC is an innovative, vertically-integrated grower, processor, and marketer of premium cherry products and other dried fruits. Grower-owned and headquartered in Traverse City, Michigan, Shoreline is one of the world’s largest producers of dried tart cherries and cherry concentrate. Shoreline also offers a broad selection of other premium dried fruits and nutraceutical products to consumers under their Cherry Bay Orchards® and Cherry Bay Wellness® brand names to retail and specialty food marketers and distributors. From our orchard to the consumer, Shoreline is committed to quality, innovation, and sustainability. For more information about Shoreline’s products and services, please visit

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