Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Learn New Farming Techniques Every Month with Catskills CRAFT

Kristan Morley, Pure Catskills CoordinatorGuest Blogger Kristan Morley is an AmeriCorps member serving as the Pure Catskills Coordinator for the Watershed Agricultural Council.


Are you a new farmer looking for advice, help, or just want to mingle with other farmers? Join Catskills CRAFT (Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training) for some fun at our monthly events, which are now in full swing!
Cheyenne Miller addresses Catskills CRAFT members at Root 'N Roost Farm.
Cheyenne Miller (far right) addresses Catskills CRAFT members 
at Root 'N Roost Farm (August 2013).
During the most recent August 2013 Catskills CRAFT event, members visited Root ‘N Roost Farm in White Sulphur Springs, NY. The group of roughly two dozen people had the opportunity to experience and observe sustainable and permaculture-based methods, and no-till farming from owner operators Sean Zigmund and Cheyenne Miller. Sean and Cheyenne led a tour of their garden beds, chicken coops, pig pens, and duck ponds while explaining rotational grazing, permaculture, hugelkultur, and recycled materials. Members shared stories, asked questions, and discussed farming throughout the evening.
Jen McGlashen offers samples of her homemade sauces to Catskills CRAFT members
Jen McGlashen (far right) offers samples of her homemade sauces 
to Catskills CRAFT members (June 2013).

More and more Catskills CRAFT farmers attend each month because of the innovative and diverse farming topics covered at each farm.  Channery Hill Farm in Callicoon Center, NY shed light on food preservation with a canning demonstration from farm owner Jen McGlashen. In July, Catskills CRAFT members headed to Heather Ridge Farm in Preston Hollow, NY to learn about diversifying a farm business from farm owner Carol Clement. And of course our last event covered human and animal powered farming methods at Root ‘N Roost Farm.

Carol Clement shows Catskills CRAFT members her animals at Heather Ridge Farm.
Carol Clement (far left) shows off her animals at Heather Ridge Farm (July 2013)
It’s not too late to enjoy a night out at a Catskills CRAFT meeting. Join us September 9 at Dirty Girl Farm in Andes, NY to learn about goat milk and cheese. Save the date on October 14 for a visit to Rondout Valley Organics in Ellenville, NY where they will show Catskills CRAFT members a CSA model, and give a garlic planting workshop. The season ends in November with a contradance and celebration (time and place still to be determined).

People of all ages including farmers and non-farmers are welcome to attend. Please visit our website for more information on Catskills CRAFT, upcoming events, and past farm tours.

A special thank you to Channery Hill Farm, Heather Ridge Farm, and Root ‘N Roost Farm who have served as gracious hosts this year.
A young girl pets a chicken at Root 'N Roost Farm.
A young girl pets a chicken at Root 'N Roost Farm (August 2013).
Catskills CRAFT looks forward to seeing you at the next event!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Pure Catskills at the Delaware County Fair

Visit the Delaware County Fair this coming week, August 12 through 17. Along with horse showmanship and livestock on display, Pure Catskills members are sharing their products with you each day!

The Watershed Agricultural Councils is also celebrating its 20th anniversary with New York City Department of Environemtal Protection. Staff from both organizations will be on hand to answer your questions about clean water, working landscapes and recreational opportunities. Here's our activity and sampling itinerary as of today, August 9... see you at the Fair!

Monday, August 12:
11a  Tent opening ceremony with La Basse Cour baked goods and Crystal Valley Farms Cream Line milk
11:15a Aissa O’Neill, La Belle Fromage/Betty Acres Farm, Pure Catskills member and Catskills Family Creameries farmstead samples cows' milk cheeses
5p Fred Huneke presents Holstein Club award at Ag Pavilion
6p Pure Catskills member and Catskills Family Creameries farmstead Byebrook raw milk gouda cows' milk cheese with farmer Leslie Deysenroth

Tuesday, August 13:
11a  Shannon Mason, Danforth Jersey Farm, a Pure Catskills member and Catskills Family Creameries farmstead, samples with Cowbella yogurt and butters sampled on Bread Fellows specialty breads
6p Pure Catskills member Shaver Hill Farm maple candies (product available for purcahse along the Midway)

Wednesday, August 14:
All day:  Catskill Watershed Corp. answers your questions about watershed septic systems and the Catskills Fund for the Future loan program
11a  Cindy Wright, Dirty Girl Farm, a Pure Catskills member and Catskills Family Creameries farmstead, samples goat milk and goat cheeses
6p  Pure Catskills member Shaver Hill Farm maple candies
Thursday, August 15:
All day: CCE-Greene County Master Forest Owners Program with Ron Frisbee
11a  Diane Frances, La Basse Cour Farm, a Pure Catskills member and Catskills Family Creameries farmstead, samples baked goods made with local ingredients from Buck Hill farm, Cowbella and her farm
6p  Byebrook farms, a Pure Catskills member and Catskills Family Creameries farmstead, samples gouda with farmer Dan Deysenroth

Friday, August 16:
All day: CCE-Greene County Master Forest Owners Program
11a  Julianna Longo, Pure Catskills member and Catskills Family Creameries farmstead, samples Sherman Hill Farmstead cow cheese & frozen desserts
6p Pure Catskills member Slickepott fudge and caramel samples

Saturday, August 17:
All day: CCE-Greene County Master Forest Owners Program
11a  Thanya Rider of Greenane Farms, a Pure Catskills member, samples salsa and Angus beef
6p Pure Catskills Best of the Week samples

Don't Miss at the Fair....
Exotic butterfly exhibit from the Butterfly House, Oneonta
Barrel riding
4-H Swine/pig showmanship


What's Fresh from the Catskills in August? Check the webpage for recipe ideas for tomatoes, Swiss chard, watermelon and duck.

September 10, 8:30a-3p: Watershed Qualified Forester Training at the Agroforestry Resource Center. Cost is free; email Tom or call (607) 865-7790 x 11.
Workshop for professional foresters working in the NYC watershed to learn the programs offered by the Watershed Agricultural Council Forestry Program. Attendance at this workshop is required for listing as a Watershed Qualified Forester with our organization. Appropriate clothing and footwear is required for a field portion. Lunch is provided.