Dear shareholders: time to get mushy!
I want to thank the amazing group of volunteers and work-for-sharers that made this season such a success in my first season growing here—and one of the toughest growing seasons on record in New England. I have so much gratitude in my heart for this farm and its lovely community. I know that transitions can be very challenging for a farm community to navigate, but I “inherited” many of the people on this list, and I have been so impressed with the grace, supportiveness, and enthusiasm that they have given to Ken and me as newbies to the farm. I’m going to miss them (you) and this farm community so much.
In no particular order, my thank yous:
Sara, Isabel, Sam, and Andrew, our field crew work-for sharers: this team helped us get harvest in quickly, got crucial fieldwork done for Ken and me when we were in a pinch, and made us laugh a lot. We couldn’t have had harvest in under the tent without you fabulous four and all of your enthusiasm, attention to detail, and hustle! Thanks so much!
Carrie, our Friday field WFS and tent monitor: You helped things go smoothly under the tent in general on Fridays, and you got everything washed and displayed while we were working to get the harvest in with a very slim crew. Your enthusiasm and high spirits brought a lot to my Fridays, and to those you helped out under the tent. Thanks so much!
Christine, our greenhouse waterer (a.k.a. watering angel): You literally kept our seedlings alive through one of the hottest and sunniest summers ever! That’s no easy feat—and you did it with a great attitude and a fantastic sense of humor. Thanks so much or going above and beyond and watering during the week while we were extra busy. It made all the difference!
Chris, board member and volunteer extraordinaire: You helped out with so much! Trash runs, covering our blueberries, field work, harvest, and watering when Christine or the farm team were not able. We are so grateful for everything, including your amazing pies! Thank you so much!
Sal, volunteer extraordinaire: We love your gentle company, your harvesting help, your delicious pesto, and your exquisite mowing! You bring so much heart to this farm, Sal. Thanks so much.
Mark, our mechanical genius WFS: There is so much field work we would have fallen behind on without Mark’s knowledge, fast action, and responsiveness. You are the “tractor guy” every farmer wishes they had around! Thank you Mark for your enthusiasm, patience, and amazing repair skills. We are so lucky to have you.
Frann, our incredibly generous, thorough, dedicated, and kind bookkeeper/admin assistant WFS: This farm business runs well because of all of the behind the scenes work you do, because you go the extra mile, and because you care a lot about doing good work. Thanks so much for your support and your patience. You are seriously amazing!
Rick, fix-it volunteer extraordinaire: Thanks for your support early on in the season while I was figuring out the systems here, and for your help with repairs and improvements. Thanks also for your sense of humor and your amazing problem solving skills! We are so grateful for all of your work.
Sara, rock star volunteer coordinator and herb garden WFS: Thanks so much for sharing with me your deep knowledge of the farm’s history, for supporting me during my transition to Stearns, and for doing such an amazing job with both the herb garden and communicating with volunteer groups. I never could have handled those things without your help. I am so grateful for all of your kindness, time, and efforts! Thank you.
Elana, the most patient editor WFS: Thanks Elana for your patience, your sense of humor, your kindness, and your flexibility as my editor. I really enjoyed working with you this season. Our newsletter is as useful and thoughtful as it is because of you—and I know how much work it takes to do that because I had write and edit CSA newsletters myself for years. Also, thanks for making my writing look good!
Nina, our coffee angel: You brightened our spirits every Friday of this hot and dusty growing season with a delivery of cold beverages, and you did it with a smile and genuine appreciation for our work—thank you so much. It really lifted our spirits and cooled us down at the end of every long, hot week.
Nomi, Bela, Jill, Jessica, Peter, Chris: I have been so impressed with how supportive, encouraging, intelligent, engaged, trusting, and caring this group of people is—it is really hard to find all of those qualities in a non-profit farm board. I am sad to leave, and a big reason is that I really enjoy working with you all. Thank you for the opportunity to have managed this little gem of a farm.
To EVERYONE who completed their work hours with enthusiasm, gave us words of encouragement under the tent, brought cookies or chocolate, picked up your share with a smile and/or some helpful feedback, went above and beyond your required work hours to get some volunteering in, put out yard signs, and spread the word to help sell shares: thanks so much for supporting us this summer! This farm community is special—down to earth, appreciative, and just generally lovely. Whoever replaces me will be lucky to grow food for you! Take good care of them!
I will be here through the end of December to finish up with winter share distribution, clean up, and help transition in your new farmer. Many of you have expressed interest in staying in touch—don’t be shy! If you want to share your contact info, you can send it to firstname.lastname@example.org because that will always come straight to me, and I’ll likely keep that account open for at least a year.
Enjoy this last bountiful share week, and thanks for a fantastic season.
Oh, and one last thing–the winter share is going to be awesome, and will include some special stuff that wasn’t in the summer share, like sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, and celeriac, so don’t forget to sign up!