Goochland Farm Tour

From Hollywood, CA to Goochland County! Suri Downs Alpacas will be one stop on the Goochland Farm Tour on September 15th.

5th Annual Farm Tour to Showcase Goochland Farms

Are you looking for a fun, free educational outing that everyone in your family will enjoy?  If so, then come join us for the fifth annual Farm Tour.  This year’s Farm Tour will highlight local Goochland agri-businesses, including a dairy operation, a sustainably produced beef farm, specialized equestrian facilities, an alpaca farm as well as the Goochland Farmers Market.

The free, self-guided tour will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 15, when six unique agribusiness sites will be open to the public. Operators will make presentations on the hour and the half-hour.

The following farms will be featured:

Alvis Farms, 1700 Alvis Road, Manakin Sabot

Alvis Farms is a family owned and operated dairy farm in eastern Goochland County. The dairy was started in 1965, and is now home to 750 milking cows, most of which are Registered Holsteins. The milking cows are housed on waterbeds, and are milked three times a day.  The family also farms roughly 4,000 acres, which is spread throughout 8 different counties. The crops grown are corn, wheat, soybeans, barley, and alfalfa.   The farm tour will showcase both the dairy and crop operations.  Additionally, representatives from Monacan Soil and Water Conservation District will be on hand providing educational information.

Photo by Debby Thomas. http://www.AnimalArtandPhotography.com

Applegarth Farm, 1225 Shallow Well Road, Manakin:  Applegarth Farm is a horse training and boarding operation established in 2001.  The farm currently boards over 25 horses, many of whom are trained in hunter-jumping.

Brookview Farm, 854 Dover Road, Manakin-Sabot:  The Fishers have been pioneers in organic, sustainable farming in the mid-Atlantic since establishing Brookview in 1981 as a grass-fed and finished- cattle commercial farming operation.  Family-owned and operated, Brookview comprises over 300 acres of pasture on which cattle roam and graze exclusively on grass and clover. Brookview epitomizes the highest standards of environmental stewardship, producing all organic products without the use of pesticides, hormones and commercial fertilizers

The Goochland Farmers Market

Goochland Farmer’s Market, 2955 River Road West (Grace Episcopal Church),

Goochland:   Every Saturday morning from May through October, Goochland’s only all volunteer and non-profit Farmer’s Market is open from 8 a.m. until noon. Each week, this genuine country market offers some of the finest produce, meats, breads, wines, cheeses, plants and farm crafts produced in Central Virginia.

Little Hawk Farm, 1625 Cardwell Road, Crozier:  Dr. Tom Newton and his wife Jennifer live and work at Little Hawk Farm, a regionally renowned equine reproduction center.  Dr. Newton has over thirty years of equine veterinary experience and offers a full range of equine reproductive services—including all three methods of breeding horses.  Little Hawk Farm has several barns to accommodate outside mares, stallions, foaling stalls as well as a reproductive lab.  There are also a number of award winning stallions on site, along with Sam-Mule, the friendly, resident Sicilian miniature donkey.

Suri Downs Alpacas, 2280 Camelback Road, Maidens:  In 2006, a chance encounter with a newspaper article extolling the joys of alpacas prompted the Finchers to consider trading their Hollywood, CA lifestyles for a more rural way of life.  Five years later, the couple moved to Maidens, VA and established Suri Downs Alpacas.   Together they raise over 30 friendly alpacas on their farm and currently have two crias (babies).

The Center for Rural Culture will offer grilled local, organic, grass-fed beef burgers provided by Brookview Farm as well hot dogs and veggie burgers with sides and a beverage.  The luncheon will be held from 11:30 – 1:30 at beautiful Brookview Farm, 854 Dover Road, Manakin-Sabot.  The cost is $7 for adults and $5 for children 6 and under.  All proceeds will benefit the Center for Rural Culture’s Education and Outreach Programs.  Lunch reservations are required.  Please call (804) 556-5841 or e-mail sgrayson@vt.edu with your meal preferences by Sep 13th.  Additionally, the Women of Grace Episcopal Church will have delicious homemade baked goods for sale separately.

A brochure that includes a map to the tour stops will shortly be available at county offices and retail locations in both Goochland and Powhatan counties later this month.  Details will also be available online at http://offices.ext.vt.edu/goochland and at http://www.centerforruralculture.org.  A map of the farms can be found at: http://goo.gl/maps/afkqU.

Tour sponsors include the Center for Rural Culture, the Goochland Office of Virginia Cooperative Extension, the Goochland County Farm Bureau, the Goochland Chamber of Commerce and the Monacan Soil and Water Conservation District.

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Secretariat’s Birthday Celebration at The Meadow This Sunday

Secretariat stands for his Jockey Club photo

Celebrate Secretariat’s birthday at The Meadow Event Park this Sunday, March 27 (1:00- 5:00)

Highlights include a Secretariat look-a-like contest to be judged by Penny Chenery, her daughter Kate Tweedy and some of the grooms who cared for Big Red as a young colt! $500 to the winner.

Meet Penny, Kate and LeeAnne Ladin, co-authors of the new book Secretariat’s Meadow- The Land, The Family, The Legend

Tickets start at $5, children under 5 are free. Call the box office for information at 804-994-2744.

Proceeds will benefit the planned Museum of the Virginia Horse at The Meadow.

Visit www.secretatiat’smeadow.com for information on the book published by Dementi Milestone Publishing. Wayne Dementi is a founding member of the 35-Mile Drive Association. www.dementimilestonepublishing.com

Be on the lookout for an article on Secretariat by Aynsley Miller Fisher coming soon in the Virginia Sportsman.

Virginia Sportsman and Balance Vaulters

 

October/ November 2010

The Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games are underway in Lexington, Kentucky (September 25-October 10.) The games host the world championships for eight different equestrian sports including dressage, driving, endurance, eventing, jumping, paradressage, reining and vaulting.

At its highest levels, vaulting is a sport of beauty, elegance and harmony between the athletes and horses. Be sure to check out the current issue of the Virginia Sportsman online at www.vasportsman.com , “Gymnastics on Horseback with Balance Vaulters” by Aynsley Miller Fisher to learn more about vaulting.

Gymnastics requires physical strength, agility, coordination, balance and grace, now imagine a gymnastics routine performed entirely on the back of a cantering horse! After the first day of vaulting competition on Wednesday, the U.S. team emerged with the lead. Check in for updates and information about the games at www.alltechfeigames.com

Aynsley is a member of the 35 Mile Drive Association and an equine specialist at Southern States. Visit www.balancevaulters.org to learn more about Katie Flannagan and her vaulting program featured in the article.

Secretariat’s Meadow

Today marks a new chapter for the legacy of Secretariat, the famous racehorse that captured the hearts of Americans and put Virginia on the map of Thoroughbred horse racing. A lot has been written about the chesnut Thoroughbred, but for the first time, we get a glimpse into that magical world that was the Meadow racing stable directly from an inside source.

Secretariat’s Meadow- The Land, The Family, The Legend by Kate Chenery Tweedy hits bookstores today! Kate is the daughter of Penny Chenery (who also wrote the foreward) and granddaughter of Christopher Chenery who founded the famous stable. A pictorial history, co-authored by Leeanne Ladin and published by Wayne Dementi of Dementi Milestone Publishing, the beautiful book tells not only Secretariat’s story, but the story of the legendary farm and the “empire built on broodmares.”

The book currently ranks #1 Bestseller in Horses and Racing books on Amazon.com! Frank Mitchell of the Daily Racing Form writes, “it is a lovely book, full of color and character, and of course, there are many photos of His Chesnut Perfection. What more could anyone ask?…It makes a grand and moving story and is told with warmth. Beautifully illustrated and produced, Secretariat’s Meadow is a pleasure for readers and fans of racing.”

Hollywood is a-buzz with the anticipated release of the Secretariat movie starring Diane Lane, John Malkovich and Scott Glenn, which premiers in Richmond on Friday, October 8.

Kate kicks off her Virginia book tour Sunday, October 10 at Southern States West Broad (8718 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23294) from noon to 3:00 p.m. Also on hand will be Covert Action (Secretariat’s grandson) ex-racehorse and star of the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, James River Chapter. For information on that event, contact aynsley.fisher@sscoop.com

For additional information about the book signing events and appearances, visit www.secretariatsmeadow.com.

For information on Dementi Milestone Publishing, visit www.dementimilestonepublishing.com. Wayne is a founding member of the 35 Mile Drive Association.