Thanks from Colchester Farm

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Thank you to our friends and supporters.

As the 2017 harvest season draws to a close, so, too, is Colchester Farm CSA. Over the last 15 years of operation, we have grown high-quality produce for our friends and neighbors, introducing you to fresh approaches to healthful eating. It has been our pleasure to train young farmers and to educate a new generation of consumers who appreciate the value of eating real food and who understand the relationship between food and the land. Week after week, our farm manager, Theresa Mycek, has orchestrated the planning and production of seasonal harvests, the stewardship of the land, the cultivation of our shareholder membership, and the labor it requires to bring the produce to market. We are grateful to Theresa for her years of dedicated service to the community, and to our shareholders who have consistently invested in our operations.

We know that Colchester’s closing is a blow to our friends and neighbors who have come to anticipate the first of the spinach and kale, or who plan their weekly menus around the array of offerings they find at the weekly pick-up. Happily, you will continue to see Theresa at the Chestertown Farmers Market in her new role as the farmer manager of Unity Church Hill Nursery. And two other local operations—Priapi Gardens and Oksana’s Produce Farm—are now accepting CSA memberships for 2018 season. We hope you will continue your patronage of all of our local farmers.

Taining young farmers has been an instrumental part of our mission as a nonprofit corporation, and we are honoring that commitment by directing all of our remaining assets to Future Harvest: Chesapeake Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture. Our gift to Future Harvest will support the Delmarva Beginner Farmer Program and will establish a Colchester Legacy Farmer of the Foodshed Award specifically for a Delmarva farmer. Theresa also has been invited to sit on Future Harvest’s Delmarva Advisory Council; in that role, she can continue to mentor local farmers who share her passion for sustainable growing practices that respect the land and contribute to a strong sense of community.

In the spirit of farmers everywhere, we express our gratitude for successful growing seasons past, and look forward to even better harvests to come.

Stay well!

The Board of Colchester Farm CSA

Save the Date: Oktoberfest at Colchester Farm CSA, October 8

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Mark your calendars for Colchester Farm CSA’s fourth annual fall harvest celebration, featuring food, fun and music for all ages, Saturday October 8, from 5 to 8 p.m. on the farm.

Family fun begins at 5 pm, with a variety of children’s activities. The fall harvest buffet features pulled pork and seasonal dishes incorporating Colchester Farm vegetables prepared by Chef Kevin McKinney of K-B Market and Kitchen School. Beverages include cider, a beer tasting (Lagunitas) and a cash bar featuring local wines. Mickey Justice & Friends will entertain with live music.

oktoberfestOne lucky person will win a sunset cruise complete with champagne aboard Elligail Charters, along with five of his or her friends. Raffle tickets for the sail are just $10 and available at Chestertown First Fridays, and at the fall celebration. Only 150 will be sold.

Proceeds support Colchester Farm CSA’s education programs. Colchester Farm programs inspire healthful change and an awareness of the natural and edible world through community cooking classes, small-scale agriculture workshops, field trips for K-12 youth, and apprenticeship and work-exchange opportunities.

Tickets for the Oktoberfest celebration are available on line at www.colchesterfarm.org, and at Chestertown First Fridays. Prices are $25 for current CSA members, $30 for non-members, and $10 for children ages 12-17 (under 12 free). Adult ticket prices increase at the door. For more information please call Aundra Anderson at 410-699-0346 or email fitwithaundra@gmail.com. Colchester Farm is located at 31285 Georgetown Cemetery Road, Galena MD, 21930.

Sponsors of the event include Benchworks, Blue Heron Contracting, Chesapeake Bank & Trust, Chester River Wine & Cheese, Clovelly Vineyards, Dukes Moore Insurance Agency, Evergrain Bread Company, LLC, Gunther McClary Real Estate, Hogans Agency, Inc. – Insurance & Real Estate, Jane and Stan Doore, Kingstown Farm, Home & Garden, Lemon Leaf Café, Mid-Atlantic Farm Credit, Price Rentals & Events, Shore United Bank, Tessemae’s All Natural, Unity Landscape/Build, and Yerkes Construction. Sponsorship inquiries are welcome at the contact information above.

Colchester Farm Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a nonprofit, small-scale farm that grows fresh local produce for shareholders and community members, and offers apprenticeships and education programs. The CSA promotes an alternative model of farming that strengthens the relationship between farmers, community members, food, and the land.

Colchester Farm CSA to Host Honey Extraction Workshop

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Are you new to beekeeping? Get ready to reap the sweet rewards.

As part of its Second Saturday Series of educational programming, Colchester Farm CSA will host a Honey Extraction Workshop this Saturday, July 9. The free event will be held at Colchester Farm, 2– 4 p.m.

Participants will learn how to remove the wax cappings from the frames, how to use a hand-cranked extractor, and how to bottle the honey.

Also coming up in the series: a Food Preservation Workshop on August 13, and a Mushroom Cultivation Class on September 10. Participants may offer donations on a sliding scale of $30/25/20. For more information, please visit www.colchesterfarm.org.

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Two Join Board of Colchester Farm CSA

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Ben Ford

Ben Ford

Benjamin Ford, an environmental educator, and Matthew Lane, an attorney specializing in consumer advocacy, have joined the board leadership of Colchester Farm CSA, a nonprofit organization that grows and delivers organically-grown produce to community members, and provides educational opportunities and programming related to sustainable agriculture.

Ford, a project specialist at Washington College’s Center for Environment & Society, is particularly interested in sustainable living, habitat restoration, environmental stewardship, and smart growth. He says his enthusiasm for sustainable agriculture was first sparked during his time abroad. After graduating from the University of Maryland Baltimore County, Ford lived in Spain, where people typically harvested their own meat and purchased locally from farmers, vintners, and fishermen.

“Now that I live in a county where almost 80 percent of land is in crop production, I am often disappointed that more people aren’t eating locally, buying locally, and being involved in their food system,” Ford says. “Food is not only our greatest connection to place, neighbor, and culture, but also to how we view our relationship with our environment.”

Ford lives in Chestertown with his wife, Kate Livie, who is director of education at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. He serves on Colchester’s education committee.

Matt Lane

Matthew Lane

Matthew Lane, who works for a D.C.-based law firm, has studied and worked in several different fields including finance, marketing, and journalism. In 2014, he and his wife, Natalie, moved from Florida to Chestertown when the Kent County Public Library selected her as its children’s and youth services librarian. Matt is also an amateur photographer.

“Living in Chestertown has afforded me the opportunity to be much more conscious of the foods that our family consumes and it has made my experience with community supported agriculture very positive,” Lane says. “I can remember a time when my life as a consumer was centered on enormous supermarkets and just getting what was easily available. Being a Colchester Farm CSA shareholder has shown me that there can be a different way if we want it, and that a community’s relationship to the land is important.”

Lane serves on Colchester’s finance committee.

In other CSA board-related news, Marcia Landskroener has been named president-elect; her term as president will begin in January 2017, when Nevin Dawson’s term expires. Landskroener, who is senior director of communications at Washington College, serves on the marketing and membership committee of Colchester’s board.

“It has been gratifying to be part of the local food movement in Kent County and, in particular, to get to know the young farmer who works so hard to bring an amazing array of produce to market. Theresa Mycek, Colchester’s farm manager, runs a first-rate operation that not only provides healthful food choices for her friends and neighbors, but that also educates a new generation of apprentice farmers and school-aged future farmers in organic growing practices. As rural communities around the country struggle to remain viable in a big-box world, Colchester Farm CSA provides an enviable model that preserves our rural heritage and builds a stronger, healthier community that appreciates its connection to the land.”

To learn more about Colchester Farm CSA, or to become a shareholder, visit www.colchesterfarm.org.

Save the Date: Oktoberfest at Colchester Farm CSA, October 3

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Mark your calendars for Colchester Farm CSA’s third annual fall harvest celebration, featuring food, fun and music for all ages, Saturday October 3, from 4 to 9 pm on the farm.

Family fun begins at 4 pm, with a variety of children’s activities. The fall harvest buffet will open at 6 pm, featuring pulled pork by Jeff Carroll/Fish Whistle, and seasonal dishes incorporating Colchester Farm vegetables prepared by Chef Kevin McKinney of B and K Market and Kitchen School. Beverages include cider, a beer tasting and a cash bar featuring local beers and wines.

Driven Women will entertain with high energy square dance tunes, fiddle blues and rags, waltzes – traditional and old time Appalachian Mountain music. The trio consists of Sue Shumaker, fiddle; Diane Jones, banjo; and Annie Williams, guitar & fiddle.

One lucky person will win a five hour afternoon sailing trip complete with music, wine, and cheese, on the schooner Martha White, along with five or his or her friends. Raffle tickets for the sail are just $10 and available at Chestertown First Fridays, and at the fall celebration. Only 150 will be sold.

Proceeds support Colchester Farm CSA’s education programs. Colchester Farm programs inspire healthful change and an awareness of the natural and edible world through community cooking classes, small-scale agriculture workshops, field trips for K-12 youth, and internship and work-exchange opportunities.

Tickets for the Oktoberfest celebration are available on line at www.colchesterfarm.org, and at Chestertown First Fridays. Prices are $25 for current CSA members, $30 for non-members, and $10 for children ages 12-17 (under 12 free). They will be $35 and $30 at the door. For more information please call Judy Gifford at 443 480 1853 or email gifford@baybroadband.net. Colchester Farm is located at 31285 Georgetown Cemetery Road, Galena MD, 21930.

Sponsors of the event include Blue Heron Construction, Chesapeake Bank & Trust, CNB Bank, Dukes Moore Insurance Agency, Evergrain Bread Company, LLC, The Hogans Agency, Kingstown Farm. Home & Garden, Music Life, PNC Bank, Galena Branch, Unity Landscape/Build, and Yerkes Construction. Sponsorship inquiries are welcome at the contact information above.

Colchester Farm Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) is a nonprofit, small-scale farm that grows fresh local produce for shareholders and community members, and offers apprenticeships and education programs. The CSA promotes an alternative model of farming that strengthens the relationship between farmers, community members, food, and the land.

Fermentation Workshop Comes to Colchester Farm CSA, August 8

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Colchester Farm CSA will host a fermentation workshop on August 8.

To register, click here. For more information, see below!

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Colchester Farm Hosts Open House This Weekend

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Colchester Farm CSA is hosting a free open house event on the farm and the public is invited. Join farm staff and board members on the farm Saturday, April 18, for a family-friendly afternoon of free food, farm tours, live music by Nevin Dawson and Pres Harding, local wine tasting, a cooking demonstration (with a recipe card to take home!), raffle for 2 free smoothies from Tracy’s and a $25 Kingstown Farm, Home & Garden gift certificate, and children’s activities.

Date: Saturday, April 18
Time: 2:00-4:00 p.m.
Location: Colchester Farm – 31285 Georgetown Cemetery Road, Galena, MD

Colchester Farm CSA Expands Membership Options for 2015

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Whether you were a member last year or two years ago, now is the time to consider joining our CSA for the 2015 season. We have the same great choose-your-own-share pick-ups with over 50 different crops to choose from throughout the season. While we still offer our regular 26-week-long season, we’ve added some new flexible membership options based on feedback we’ve received over the years. So, please take a look and we hope you will consider joining our CSA again in 2015.

To sign up, purchase online or complete and mail in our sign-up form.

Prices remain the same as 2014 for our regular 26-week season, but we have made some changes and added some new options for 2015.

– Farm pick-up will be Saturday mornings 8-10 am

– We’ve added a CSA share box drop-off at Crow Farm on Wednesdays 4-7 pm

– The Middletown share box drop-off will now be on Wednesdays at Real Food Period (5246 Summit Bridge Rd, Middletown, DE 19709). Boxes should be there by 10 am and can be picked up then until the store closes at 7pm.

And, in addition to our regular, 26-week season, we are now offering the following options:

Full Season Flex Share
Pick up vegetables your choice of 13 out of 26 weeks during our regular season starting mid- to late May. If a regular season small share offers too many vegetables for you or your schedule makes it difficult to pick up your share every week, this may be the option for you.

Half Season Share – Summer or Fall
Pick up once a week for 13 weeks and choose: Summer Season (starting mid- to late May) or Fall Season (starting late August).

Price of flex or half season shares:
small share (5 units/week) = $225
medium share (8 units/week) = $280

Installment Option:
You can pay for your share in one lump sum or in three installments.

The first payment is due by the end of February. However, once you make the first payment, you are committing to purchasing a share. Your second and third payments will be due by March 31 and April 30.

Pay with Credit Card through PayPal: This year we are again offering the ability to pay for your CSA share using your credit card through PayPal at our website.

Pay by check, print out the CSA Sign-up Form (pdf) and mail it to us with your payment or give it to us at the Chestertown Farmers’ Market on Saturday mornings (8am until noon).

For more information, visit the Colchester Farm CSA website.

Colchester Farm Creates New Opportunity for Local Teens

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Colchester Farm has been a long standing resource for college students and recent graduates to learn the skills and techniques of sustainable agriculture. Now they are offering this hands-on training and experience to area high school students.

Area teens come to this non-profit community supported agriculture farm and work side-by-side with an expert in sustainable vegetable production. Seasoned apprentices are, also, in the fields to guide and mentor these budding farmers. During the summer, teens have the chance to meet new people, develop valuable skills and earn service learning hours towards high school graduation.

“[VolunTeen] is a great opportunityand it’s a way for people to get their foot in the door and learn a lot about agriculture” -Kate Leier, 2014 Apprentice

“It’s nice to have the extra hands and to have such young people come out to work is good motivation for me. [the VolunTeens] are years ahead of me…and that’s something to be proud of!” -Keifer Russell, 2014 Apprentice

“The work keeps me focused and the people are amazing they inspire and motivate me.” -Tim Lindsey, 10th grader at Kent County High

“VolunTeen is flippin’ stellar…I feel like I’m really accomplishing something”. -Bryan Betley 11th grade homeschooler

Colchester Farm’s VolunTeen Summer is still welcoming new students who are entering 9th through 12th grade. VolunTeens come to the farm every Thursday from now through August from 7:00am to 12:00pm. VolunTeens are welcome to bring their lunch and stay the afternoon for additional farm experience and occasional on-farm recreation. For more information about this or any of the other volunteer opportunities at Colchester Farm email: education@colchesterfarm.org