Tornado damages Hickory Ridge Farm in Chesapeake

Posted at 9:34 PM, Apr 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-06 23:17:34-04

CHESAPEAKE, Va. - An EF-0 tornado tore through a popular family farm in Chesapeake on Thursday.

High winds damaged several buildings on the Hickory Ridge Farm property off Battlefield Blvd. The farm, known for U-Pick strawberries and pumpkins, is scheduled to open back up April 22.

"This is a very rewarding way to make a living but it's also a lot of hard work and we have built a business over the past five years doing the strawberries and the pumpkins so yeah, it's devastating to see it," said owner Robin Pierce.

The storm took out Hickory Ridge's farm stand, part of the animal pen and the entire play area.

EF-0 tornadoes bring winds of about 65-84 mph.

Pierce says people began coming out to help as soon as the storm hit.

"That's a huge blessing," she said. "We felt lost when we showed up here today so it's just coming together."

Severe weather photos: April 6, 2017

A few miles to the north a home off Centerville Turnpike was struck by a tree. Bobby Hoag says he was visiting his mother when it happened.

"We heard a loud crack and then like a boom and then we felt the home shake and heard a lot of glass shattering," he said.

It wasn't until the family emerged from taking cover that they realized a tree was inside one of the bedrooms.

Now crews are working to cut away the mess.

"Nobody got injured and nobody lost their lives," said Hoag.


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