This weekend, we decided to attend an event put on by our CSA farm.  It gave us an opportunity to tour the farm, play with critters, entertain the kids, and hear a favorite author speak–all in one day!  Enjoy the pictorial:

Welcome to Harvestical 2010. I loved this sign! So creative!

One of the first things to greet us on the farm were the highly publicized, member-painted, mobile hen busses. A small portion of the farm's layer flock, and most of their araucauna (easter egg) chickens calls these busses home. The busses are rotated around the farm, and the chickens are always free-roaming to eat bugs, worms, forage, leftover crops, and anything else that tickles their fancy. These are happy hens!!

At night, the hens return to their bus, and someone simply shuts the door to keep them safe.

The duckling pen. The CSA raises ducks for meat. This temporary pen and shelter housed 2000 ducklings.

The catapult. We actually succumbed, and paid $5 just for the thrill of witnessing a watermelon fly through the air from this gigantic catapult. The kids found it quite thrilling, and I admit, the resulting total destruction of the watermelon was rather impressive!

Bobbing for apples. This was the kids first experience bobbing for apples. Not only does the early bird get the worm, but the early kids get the apples that have the stem attached! Even A managed to grab a stem in his teeth, have to get nothing more than the tip of his nose wet.

Jersey milk cows. These were A's favorite. He has suddenly developed a fascination with cows.

Miniature horse. Apparently, the farm actually rescued 2 of these little guys from a circus. Due to abuse however, the other has reportedly still not become brave enough to be on public display.

Sheep. In addition to veggies and fruit, our CSA also offers a selection of meat to their members, including duck, goose, lamb, pork, and beef.

I have to admit, I found the hogs rather entertaining. I just couldn't resist their snorts and grunts as they happily dug around in the dirt looking for a cool, moist spot to lie down.

The petting zoo's donkey. She had been thoroughly fed that morning, and really wasn't interested in what the kids had to offer.

This little goat was pregnant, which fascinated M. She, too, had been thoroughly fed that morning. No amount of enticing could convince her to eat the treats offered by the kids.

A giant hay stack. The kids spent more time here than anywhere. If it hadn't been for all the kids, I might have been tempted to jump in. What fun!!

OK, I'm convinced...I think I am going to have to build one of these on our farm! The straw was piled 2-3 bales high, and the kids had so much fun burying themselves, jumping on it, falling on it, and whatever else they could think of.

M managed to get herself lost in the straw maze for a solid 20 minutes. S would peek over and catch a glimpse of her every now and then.

The craft tent allowed the kids to paint flower pots and giant zucchini. I guess that's one way to use up those massive zucchinis.

There were 2 stilt-dancers, a giant chicken and a sunflower. M was nervous about them at first--she has never been a fan of costumed characters, but after a while, she warmed up and wanted to investigate.

The art barn allowed the kids to paint walls to their heart's content. I should have known better than to dress JR in his best pants for a trip to the farm (it was the only clean pair he had!). Oh well.

We let A and N participate in most activities, but refused to let them paint the barn walls. With good reason, I feared that if they got to do that in the barn, everytime I turned my back at home for the next 2 years, there would likely be some unwelcome decor on my walls at home!

The whole reason I really came to this event.....Joel Salatin! We own all but his most recent book, and his farming practices and tips have completely changed the way we plan to farm. This guy is impressive!

What was I thinking dressing poor A in a flannel shirt?! I realized he was going to bake once he fell asleep in my lap, so I had to unbutton and try to cool him down. Guess he wasn't quite as interested in listening to Joel Salatin as I was!

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