our little flock's FARM OPEN HOUSE 2011
I am held our first annual our little flock Farm Open House on Saturday August 6th, 2011 from 1pm to 4pm. This event was open to the public, and the saying "if you build it, they will come" certainly rang true on this day. It is estimated that about 500 people attended the Open House. It was a hot afternoon, with some welcome cloud-cover from time to time. The sheep, donkeys, alpacas, and even the Pygmy goats, had no interest in "feeding time with Farmer Jim" (that would be my dad), as they just laid in the shade and expended as little energy as possible. A big thank you to our family for helping pull together such a fantastic afternoon. Without everyone's help, it would not have gone so smoothly!
Here is a slideshow of pictures some of our guests took of the Farm Open House. I must admit that it was all a blur to me, and unfortunately I did not get to speak with each person that toured our farm that day. It was great to give back to the community and open our doors to the general public and allow people of all ages the opportunity to see and touch these rare, miniature animals.
I was proud to be raising money for the London Health Sciences Foundation benefiting the Multi-Organ Transplant Unit. I offered an entry ballot for this barn-door prize for a minimum donation of $2. Tax receipts were given for donations greater than $20.
Another favorite attraction of the our little flock Farm Open House was the hay wagon rides through the trails of our bush - with the hay wagon pulled by a restored, antique John Deere tractor. As well, "papa" will had all of his antique John Deere tractors on display. This is an impressive collection and sure did please. My father-in-law, Ron, ran the tractor all day from about 1:30pm until 4pm. People lined up for a ride for half-an-hour. The first wagon ride of guests fed the mosquitos quite well so that the guests on the final ride did not get bit quite as badly as the first! I suppose now that we have lived here for 6 years, we have learnt to ignore the mosquitos, or the mosquitos just enjoy the fresh blood (so to speak) that was offered that day!
On August 9th, I celebrated 11 years since I had my kidney transplant in London, Ontario and hoped to raise LOTS of money for this cause, as well as increase awareness about the life-changing results of organ donation and transplant. In 1998 I started a business called Bear Naked Lady Teddy Bears, making heirloom teddy bears from vintage fur coats. I made a 22" real fur, heirloom teddy bear (similar to the one pictured above) that I was offering as our barn-door prize in order to raise money. 100% of money donated at this event was given to the LHSF Multi-Organ Transplant Unit. I truly appreciate every dollar that was donated. I am thrilled to say that during the 3-hour Open House we raised $2309 for LHSF! To all who donated - you should be proud of your generosity. I am very proud, and very lucky to have be living with a successful kidney transplant. Everyone of us, including the animals, were EXHAUSTED after the Farm Open House. I called it an "Annual" Farm Open House, though it was simply too much for me to do this again next year...or the year after.....!