— Current Events —

picnic in the Fields, Sunday, September 23
10:30 am–3:00 pm

What’s new: Live music by Bobbi Carmitchell • Reserve a table for 4, 8, or 10 • Extra shade with more purple tents in the dining area.

Returning favorites: Kids’ tent (make a bug, plant kale, dive into the hay bale pool) • A new menu from Miller’s (with choices for carnivore and vegan palates and contributions from Mirror Image Farms, Village Crest Mushrooms, and North Star Fruits)A beverage tent with a signature cocktail (a Farmer’s Mule with lemongrass and local spirits), local wine, and beers • A Silent Auction (original artwork, farmer-curated local baskets, and more).

Free off-street parking includes a short hay-wagon ride to the venue. Accessible parking, rest rooms and seating options. Funds raised by this event help us to maintain the land and buildings, purchase equipment, and make repairs. Click here for more information or to order tickets.


22nd Annual Golf Tournament
Friday, September 21

Registration and driving range at 7:30 AM—Tee off at 8:30 AM.
The opportunity to shine with your friends in Homefields’ backyard, (a.k.a., Crossgates Golf Club), will come again on Friday, September 21, 2018. Save the date, and look forward to the fun of the Homefields 22nd Annual Fall Classic Golf Tournament. It is our sponsors who contribute so generously and selflessly to make this benefit possible. We welcome your support again this year, and we invite new sponsors at any level to join us. Visit this page for more information. 


 Our 41st newsletter is at the printer now. Click here to get a sneak peek.

Our 41st newsletter is at the printer now. Click here to get a sneak peek.

Here’s what’s new: Winter squash, Asian pears, and Paw Paws are aplenty! Butternut and acorn squash, roma and royal burgundy beans. Tomatillos and Ground cherries are good to go, Eggplant is on its way. Onions and garlic are curing in the greenhouse, Dill, Cilantro, Squashes, Cherry Tomatoes and their bigger brethren are slowing down, Kale, Bronze Fennel, Okra, and Rudbeckia are still available. Next in line will be potatoes, sweet potatoes, cucumbers, beans, peanuts, lemongrass...

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Pickups are Thursday, 3:00–7:00pm • Friday, 11:00am–7:00pm • Saturday, 9:00am–1:00pm. Mushroom, coffee, and egg shares are available, and the meat share will start 6/21–6/23!

Click here for answers to common questions about our CSA program. To sign up, click the button, shoot an email to farmer@homefields.org, or call the farm office at 717.871.3110. We offer a prorated share price.


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Talks in the Fields

Farm Share Journal with Carol Welsh: Sat. 10/6,  1:30pm-3:30pm

Experience the farm in a new way with nature journalist Carol Welsh as your guide. Carol is a knowledgeable naturalist and accomplished artist; she will select vegetables, herbs and flowers, and will offer recipes and fascinating information about each selection for inclusion in your journals. Click here for more info.

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Welcome, members of Meaningful Day Academy (Friendship Community)! This gang will be volunteering at the Farm every Friday until November. Here they are on their first day, when they prepared garlic for shareholders. Great to have you with us.

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If you’re at the Farm on Thursdays, say “hi” to our friends from ODC. The Occupational Development Center provides vocational training for adults with developmental disabilities. Their members help us with weekly projects such as propagating seedlings and preparing produce for pickup.

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Open Streets Lancaster took place on May 20 and Homefields was there. Many thanks to Farm Supervisor Elizabeth Swope, Office Manager Tracy Beck and her husband Steve, and volunteer Brandon, for staffing our purple pop-up tent, distributing seedlings, and answering questions


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Sunflowers in the house! Zoa Kile and Katie Landis harvested bamboo from neighbor Mary and Fritz Schroeder. Brandon Santiago and father and son Don and Brad Turner built the bamboo structure. Mike Hurrell joined Bradley in digging the beds. Now we get to watch Bradley's Sunflower House grow!

It can’t be all work and no relaxation! Elizabeth and Amy led a group of folks through beneficial gentle tai chi and yoga exercises on Saturday, June 16, by the greenhouses. 

The Lancaster County Conservancy provided free native trees to CSA shareholders during first pickup (6/7–6/9), to coincide with Lancaster Water Week. The focus is on protecting 1500 miles of streams and rivers that provide our drinking water, areas of recreation, and base for agricultural and economic growth.  How cool is that?


Homefields on YouTube

It’s been over two decades since we bought the horse farm that started this all (really?!?). Yet it wasn’t until fairly recently that Tom Strauss, one of our founding fathers, created a video that distills our 25-year history into less than 5 minutes. Check it out. Click on the “Watch YouTube.com” logo at near bottom right to see in a larger screen.


—Our History: A Synopsis

 Jim Determan, a founding Homefields member, breaks ground that had been untilled for a very long time.

Jim Determan, a founding Homefields member, breaks ground that had been untilled for a very long time.

Conception

In 1991, a group of parents and invited professionals came together to discuss the state of affairs for their children, and the plight of Lancaster County adults with mental retardation and other disabilities. Existing programs were at capacity with long waiting lists. Our group, determined to build a step where none existed, imagined a more flexible environment where adults with mental retardation and other special needs, families, and the community, would partner together to create new opportunities.
 
The Dream

We wrote a mission statement expressing a desire for a financially secure, long-term home in a safe, family-like setting where there is respect for the individual in a holistic sense, and where fun and creativity are revered as basic human needs. The home would be situated on land that supported a small farming operation with year-round projects. This environment, with many on-going activities, would stimulate residents and offer them new options. Then we took that dream and made it come true.
 

Realization

In 1994, five families who love an adult member with special needs, incorporated, pooled their finances, and purchased an eight-acre horse-boarding farm in Millersville, PA. Homefields’ philosophy is a nurturing, self-sufficient one, so the people who eventually moved to Homefields, with the help of their families, were instrumental in renovating and personalizing their own home. Everyone rolled up their sleeves to remodel a ranch house, restore a stone house, disassemble and move a fence, paint a barn, clean up the grounds, and plant even more flowers. Three years after the first meeting, three adults who require assisted living moved into the stone house. Soon after, the ranch house was completed and three other residents moved into that home.

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The Present

The residents continue to live as independently as possible at Homefields. They are supported by the professional staff of Community Services Group, are loved by their families, and are protected through the watchfulness of family members, advocates, Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (BH/DS) of Lancaster County, and Homefields' Board of Directors. New families have come our way seeking a home for their cherished son or daughter. The Homefields Farm vocational farm program has taught work skills to over 200 farmer trainees. Hundreds of families have been nourished by the farm’s organic produce, grown by adults with disabilities and other barriers to independence.


Civic Leadership Award

Homefields received the 2013 Walker Center’s Distinguished Civic Leadership Award from Millersville University, recognizing “individuals or organizations that make noteworthy civic and community contributions of local, regional, national or international impact and who have been a catalyst for encouraging civic engagement on the part of others.”