We’ve had so many neighbors stop by the farm over the years and share their stories with us about Massaro Farm. “I used to help Tony deliver the eggs,” said one man. “I got a phone call at 4 a.m. once,” said another. “The bull’s in heat. Can you come help?”
Some of those testimonials we’ve captured, but many others are simply shared with us on the fly, in the middle of an event, by folks whose names and details we don’t get. But they all speak to one thing – that friends and neighbors have been coming to this farm for over a hundred years, and they all take some experience away with them.
We’re continuing the tradition of imparting what we know at Massaro Community Farm. Capturing our best practices, gleaning from others and sharing that knowledge with the community is a main pillar of our charitable purpose and we fulfill that at every possible turn.
Operating a Community Supported Agriculture subscription program is one of the biggest educational impacts we can make with our farm. Every week throughout the season, subscribers come by the farm and pick up a bag or two of freshly picked vegetables. Often the harvest includes at least one item that is unfamiliar to most, something they wouldn’t seek out at the supermarket. But in setting out a planting plan for the season – something Farmer Steve does each January – the farm has to grow what will tolerate growing conditions in Connecticut. That is why we are always sharing suggestions to prepare some of the lesser known items, like kohlrabi, flowering broccoli, and purslane. Research has also shown that eating produce in season ensures a much higher nutrient content. Additionally, consumers will get the benefit of those vitamins and minerals from seasonally available foods during a natural cycle of when the human body needs them most.
Farm education also extends to the many workshops we offer for adults. Our upcoming workshop on Home Grown Teas is full, but there will be many more opportunities for engagement, such as yoga on the farm (July), flower arranging (July), making your own salsa (August), natural dyes (September) and wreath making (November). A full list of offerings can be found on the farm’s website calendar and is constantly being updated.
Massaro Farm is expanding its youth-based programming in 2019 with a third week of our popular summer program, set to run July 19-August 16. This half-day program immerses 6-9-year-olds in farm life, allowing them to participate in the planting, caring for and harvesting of farm vegetables. Attendees learn the importance of biodiversity to our growing operation, exploring the fields, woods and wetlands of the farm property, spending most of their days in the farm’s learning garden. Thanks to a grant from Autism Speaks, this year the farm is adding an element of inclusion, enrolling students with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) in the program. This is a reflection of the increasing interest from parents of students with ASD who want to offer their children the experience both of being outside, but also to be included with the general population. Farm education will continue in the fall with after school sessions. And we are planning for our first school vacation day sessions, as well as a Growing Sprouts program for parents and their children ages 2-5. Scholarships are available. The farm takes full responsibility for your kids wanting to eat more veggies!
Please note: registration for many of our workshops is set up so attendees can pay a suggested donation at the door. Please only reserve a spot if you know you can come, or let us know if your plans change. We often have a waitlist of people wanting to attend farm workshops and we hate to turn folks away, only to have spaces open up by those who don’t show up at the last minute.
Massaro Community Farm, Inc. is a nonprofit, certified-organic farm on the border of Woodbridge and Ansonia, CT. It is committed to supporting the legacy of farming, feeding neighbors in need, and building community through events and hands-on education for all ages. For more information about our CSA or programming, please visit www.MassaroFarm.org, or call (203) 736-8618.
The Farm Staff