Bring a picnic to Stearns Farm and learn about its rich history from local resident and author Elizabeth Fideler on Thursday, July 28 at 6:30 pm.

Fideler was an Edmands Road neighbor of Margaret Welch, who owned the Stearns Farm land. She was also acquainted with Penelope Turton, Welch’s companion and caregiver, who farmed it. Fideler is currently writing a biography of Welch, who divided her time between the historic Nixon House across the street from the farm and her home in Boston’s Louisburg Square.

Participants can learn about the origins of the farm, Welch and Turton’s shared interest in gardening, and how Turton became a pioneer of organic farming. Sign up to attend:

Welch, who also co-founded the Framingham Friends Meeting, was descended from 17th-century dissenter Anne Hutchinson. A society-page fixture, Welch hosted dances in her Beacon Hill home. But she was also a tireless writer, lecturer, lobbyist and fundraiser for environmental and social causes, says Fideler. Welch died in 1984.

Fideler, an education researcher, is the author of two recent books about older workers who stay on the job past conventional retirement age: Women Still at Work and Men Still at Work (Rowman & Littlefield Publishing). “Having enjoyed the in-depth interviewing of accomplished older women and men, I began to read books on biography written by and about interesting women, not all of whom were well known,” Fideler says. “That led me to Margaret Welch,” and her involvement with local land conservation efforts.

The talk is open to the public (suggested donation: $5). Participants are encouraged to bring a picnic dinner and their own non-disposable plates and utensils. Please note Stearns Farm is a “carry in, carry out” farm: there are no trash disposal facilities. Any leftover food or other waste must be carried off the farm at the end of the event.

Stearns Farm reserves the right to cancel any event if fewer than five people have registered to attend.