From The Executive Director
It has been a wondrous year at the Farm with both highs and lows intertwined. We have an incredibly dedicated staff that put their hearts into the place and have created a great environment. We have seen increased programming to now consist of 3-track curriculum in our equestrian, animal husbandry, and horticulture programs; however, these improvements come with increased costs. Horticulture and our unique state-of-the-art greenhouse, boasting aeroponics (courtesy of Cynthia Gompers and Juice Plus+) and aquaponics systems, will be the focus of new programs in 2019.
Our broad range of farm-related activities include an extensive horsemanship program, field trips for school-aged youth, service learning, summer camps, TUF Kids Leadership program, the Denver Department of Public Safety youth program, 4-H, community gardens, and GoWild programming in Northeast Metro Denver (GOCO money being used in your own backyard!). Our summer camp programs will be coming out in January, so keep your eyes out for those.
Alongside programming, we also have the care of the animals. I have included pictures of my daughter and me feeding them on Christmas Eve. For the past few years, I have somehow consistently ended up with the Christmas Eve night feeding, and Andrea, our Equine manager, has always taken Christmas morning shift. This year, we brought treats (peppermints and pumpkins for the holiday season) for the animals and took some pictures. We hope you enjoy them.
We both enjoy feeding the animals and it is always special on the winter nights, with the festive mood and invigorating weather. My daughter has fed the animals with me every Friday night over the years, mostly because it has been a hard shift to fill. She has learned the responsibility of taking care of the animals, blanketing the horses, and looking for signs that somebody may not be doing well. It is one of the most important jobs on the Farm.
I am always surprised that we’ve come this far, remembering when she started riding horses at the Farm when she was eight years old. This position has given me a lot of quality time with her over the years. It’s hard to believe she will graduate high school this spring and, in the blink of an eye, be at college next fall. Fortunately, I still get to feed the animals with her until then!
To close out 2018 and Holiday season, please consider donating to the Urban Farm:
Please put a penny in the old man’s hat.
If you haven’t got a penny, a ha’penny will do.
If you haven’t got a ha’penny, God bless you.
~A Christmas Song, Norman Williams
Cheers to a great 2019!