Our Visit to Polyface Farm
July 20, 2015 1 Comments
One of the stops we originally wanted to make on this trip was Polyface Farm in the Shenandoah valley of Virginia. Since it was on the way from Florida to D.C., we were able to stop and tour the farm.
Polyface Farm is run by Joel Salatin and his family. Joel is one of the premier "beyond organic" farmers in the world. He first gained national notoriety from his appearance in the documentary Food Inc. Polyface looks to be nothing spectacular on the surface. To get there, you have to turn onto several winding country roads. The farm is definitely off the "beaten path".
Then, when you arrive, all you see is a couple of farm houses, several hoop houses where produce is grown, some shanty buildings for various farm animals and acres of beautiful green pasture. I wish I had time to tell you why Polyface is such a special place, but you really should go to Amazon.com and type in "Joel Salatin". Watch all the videos and read all his books. Even if you aren't into farming, you are into food, aren't you? If you are in to food, you need to know who Joel Salatin is and why he is so popular.
There is nothing secretive about what Polyface Farm does. Salatin allows anyone in the world to come to his farm and give a self-guided tour. All his pasture and farm buildings are open to anyone. He has nothing to hide becuase he does farming right! We weren't able to make it for a guided tour, so we got to the farm, parked the RV and set about to see what was up.
We first found some bunnies, grapes and geese. We also toured several hoop houses with various produce (tomatoes, squash, beans, etc). We also saw lots of chickens, goats, pigs and a couple farm dogs.
The kids, especially Crist, were so excited to see what was going on at the farm. Crist was running from place to place, and in his enthusiasm, didn't see where he was stepping. He stepped/fell into a small pond/large puddle and was up over his waist in scummy water. He began yelling "I fell in, I fell in!" so we ran up to him and pulled him out. He was covered from chest to toe in water and pond scum.
We thought it was funny. He did not.
But the nice thing about having an RV is that Mom walked him back and got him a shower and fresh change of clothes so we could get back to touring the farm.
While Mom and Crist were in the RV cleaning up, Brooklyn, Grace and I went up the hill to see the many portable chicken houses Polyface has. There must have been 30 different portable chicken houses.
After a couple hours of walking around, we ended up at the farm store where we bought some souvenirs and of course some produce and meat. For some reason, we paid $15 for a pound of bacon, but we wanted to support Polyface, so it was worth it.
We really enjoyed our visit to Polyface and hope that we can one day soon begin a small hobby farm of our own.