The last month before school begins again, August was filled with summer campers, bicyclists, and teachers from many local organizations. Representing the Frederick YMCA, both the Outdoorsman and BASE Campers (all 202 of them!) made week-long homes in our Homestead Barn. The Outdoorsman occupied themselves by fishing in the pond, playing hide and go seek in the arboretum, and hiking our beautiful trails.
Kids Like Us continued to be their beautiful selves on the farm in August. Combining their music therapy drumming circles on Tuesdays with their Wednesdays spent immersed in our farm animals’ fur and feathers, their visits were always immensely restorative to everyone involved. As mentioned in a previous blog, the people in charge of this county program are unbelievably kind, compassionate and empathetic human beings.
In that same vein, the caseworkers from Potomac Case Management took two days in August to bring up their clients. The first day, a group of elementary schoolers groomed horses, played in the hay, held chickens, and of course walked the puppies! On the second day, the middle and high schoolers took a quick tour of our many animals before participating in our Equine Assisted Learning program. During this, they showed exceptional patience and kindness toward our animals.
Our animals also gave and received love from the students at Frederick Community College’s Children’s Center. These twelve kids journeyed around the property, making time to be licked by our cows, curiously eyed by our chickens, drooled upon by our horses (the clover is making them slobber this time of year), kissed by our pups and lovingly leaned against by our goats.
For the second year in a row, the Sheduru Mountain Bike Race began and ended their race at our homestead barn. A total of 175 mountain bikes raced from our property to the Frederick watershed, where they made complete use of the trails.
Finally, many of our local schools will be making use of the lodge for professional development days. These schools include our friends at Head Start, the FCPS Department of Student Services, Butterfly Ridge Elementary, Thurmont Middle School, St. John Regional Catholic School, and Brook Lane’s Laurel Hall school.
It is such a treat to have our lodge and farm so busy with enthusiastic humans, all working hard to make our community a better place for us all.