Five years ago, on a leap of faith, Kevin Hicks, owner of Ephraim Pottery, opened Ephraim Pottery West Gallery in Cambria, CA. California’s Central Coast enchanted him and the beauty – so different from our Wisconsin surrounds – continually inspires us. The locals have been so warm, inviting, and enthusiastic about our art pottery. We feel like Cambria is a hidden treasure that we would love to share with you.
Our gallery manager, Shari Little – a California native and our wonderful ambassador to the area, answers some of our questions and provides a bit of insight into visiting her neck of the woods this season.
Here in Wisconsin the weather is damp and grey in April. How is Cambria in April?
We’ve had over 35 inches of rain this season in Cambria and another storm due here on Friday. Most people like to visit when it is sunny, which it typically is, so they can do all the outside activities – biking, kayaking, walking, hiking, paddle boarding, etc. The positive side of all the rain is that it has brought our flowers early and lots of them. I had a customer in this morning who shared some pictures of the Poppy Reserve she had just visited.
Heavy rain has caused problems with roads and bridges in the area. How has that affected tourism?
I’ve spoken with other business owners here and we all agree that we’ve seen a very significant slow down because of the Big Sur – Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge collapse on HWY 1. Right now, there is nothing but parking everywhere – East Village is the same. If anyone would like to visit this time of year, they’ll have the towns to themselves with plenty of parking (unlike Summertime).
What are the must-see stops for visitors to the Central Coast?
If you have a day or a weekend to visit Cambria our sunny West Village gallery is a must stop. Here you will find an ever-changing offering of handmade art pottery, art tiles, woodwork and Arts & Crafts style furnishings. Our neighboring shops and eateries also have quality goods to offer, plenty to make for an enjoyable day of leisure!
While in Cambria there is great hiking and walking along the boardwalk next to the ocean at Fiscalini Ranch. Very nearby in San Simeon, there is a great spot to view the elephant seals. Also, a tour of the famous Hearst Castle never disappoints. Just south of us, Avila Beach is the warmest beach on the coast and is an upscale town with a golf course and a working pier. Nearby San Luis Obispo also has wonderful shopping and a fabulous night farmer’s market on Thursdays.