Mixon Fruit Farms leaves a legacy of making memories in Bradenton


Key takeaway: As it closes after nearly 85 years, a look back at Mixon Fruit Farms, and its longtime owners, reveals a passion for making memories.

Core challenge: The agriculture industry in Florida is grappling with threats on multiple fronts, including labor, inflation and citrus greening.

What’s next: While weddings are scheduled to continue into 2024, owners Janet and Dean Mixon hope to sell the property, initially listed for $16 million, to Manatee County.

As Janet Mixon sat at a table by the ice cream section of Mixon Fruit Farms, a customer approached her.

Although she couldn’t remember the customer’s name, she knew the customer was a regular who frequently bought ice cream.

The customer hugged Janet.

“I’m sure going to miss this place,” the customer said. “I love this place.”

Since Janet and husband Dean Mixon, the owners of Mixon Fruit Farms, announced they were closing down July 29, the couple has heard countless stories and memories of Mixon Fruit Farms from customers.

“I’m going to miss people coming up and saying they love our place or thank you for doing this or that,” Janet says. “It has meant a lot to us.”

Mixon Fruit Farms lasted 84 years.