5 star farm is located on Scanlan Road, and is easy to reach from either Road 38 or the Village of Sydenham. Curtis and Tracy, who run the farm with help from their children, bought the property in 2014. It is an older farm property with plenty of character, big barns and drive sheds, perfect for them to establish a demonstration farm where they raise a number of animals and organize fun educational events for families nearby to attend and get a taste of rural farm life.
They ran a number of events last year, and hosted parties, birthdays and other private functions as well. The most popular events last year were the Easter weekend open house, and a fall harvest event near Halloween. This year the focus will be on those two events as open public gatherings, with the possibility of some specialised workshops on specific themes.
Last Saturday, the Easter event they hosted was a smashing success.
“We had 5 volunteers in the parking area, and within 20 minutes of opening there were 300 cars there,” said Tracey Parker The crowds were very thick in the morning and lessened a bit when the weather turned rainy in the afternoon. All in all, however, over 1,500 people came to the farm.
What they saw were goats, pot bellied pigs, rabbits, ducks, a baby goat in the large barn, as well as horses and other farm animals. Plans to show off two sets of lamb twins in a small barn did not pan out because the ewe’s were not ready so it was more of a sheep maternity ward.
Outside there was a straw bale maze with balls hidden everywhere. Children made their way through the maze, and filled basket of balls to win a prize. There was also an opportunity to plant seeds, a craft table for kids, and entertainment by Kingston’s Fiddle Earth. Conboy’s Maple Syrup from Sharbot Lake and Dustica Design wood crafts and toys from Verona were also on hand.
“All in all, we seem to have developed a flow over the past year since we started doing these events, and we seem to be able to handle this kind of crowd pretty well. It helped that we had about 20 volunteers here and all the free labour from our family,” she said. “People are definitely interested in having fun and learning about how animals behave in a farm and what all farms were like in this area not that long ago.”
As for the future, as far as events for the general public the focus is going to be on the Easter and October events, and the hope is to develop the location as a venue for different kinds of events as it continues to be available for private functions.
For information about 5 Star Farms, go to Facebook or fivestarfarm.ca