I Can’t Imagine Not Loving Being a Neighbor of the Vineyard

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If you’ve seen the front page of this month’s Granby Drummer (let alone taken a peek inside), you know that someone is not so happy with our town vineyard.  Maybe the entire issue can be solved with a change of attitude,
so I’d like to take a minute to look on the bright side of having a vineyard in our beautiful town.  

I don’t live  next door to the vineyard, but I do live across the street from Salmon Brook Park.  I enjoy the happy sounds not just of summer concerts and weekly ball games as I work in our fields.  I love the fact that we can see and hear the fireworks for Celebrate Granby right from our front porch.  So I can’t imagine not loving being the neighbor of the vineyard.

We moved from New York City to raise our kids in the town where my husband grew up.  With all its benefits  (there are so many), culture is not as quick and easy to be found.  I love  having a place to see art, hear music, admire the beauty of nature.  So I
can’t imagine not loving being the neighbor of the vineyard.

The best part of being a farmer in this town is our community.  We are all looking to help each other, each believing that together we are stronger than we are individually.  It’s why
we started Open Farm Day, why we showcase each other at our own farms, and why we feel we can rely on each other for help and advice.  The vineyard is a big part of this community.  So I can’t imagine not loving being the neighbor of the vineyard.

Our farm had plans (literally) to become a housing development before my husband and I
decided to move back to Granby.  Because of a family commitment to farming on the part of his grandparents, his parents and us, our 50 acres in the center of town is still a farm.  We are hoping that the work we are doing now will inspire our own kids to want to take care of the land as a farm in the future.  But they need to see it as a successful, viable business (as all farms MUST be) in order to want to take on the work that it is. Diversification is key to the health of any farm.  So I can’t imagine not loving being the neighbor of the vineyard.

I’ll admit it.  I’m jealous of the vineyard.  It’s a place people just love to go (who doesn’t love wine).  Ground beef and pork chops just aren’t as sexy as Firehouse Red and Clemons Springs white.  They pull people in from near and far and their draw helps not just all of the farms in town, but all of the businesses in town.   So I can’t imagine not loving being the neighbor of the vineyard.

We’re losing farmland at an alarming rate – less so in CT, thankfully.  How great is it that we have
not only farmers who have been working their land for generations, but new farmers, reclaiming land that surely once was farmed.  What a great resource for our town.  So I can’t imagine not loving being the neighbor of the vineyard.

As farms in town, we realize that we sometimes try your patience.  But we thank you for being so helpful and understanding.  Our horse is in your back yard?  Thanks for helping us corral them back on to our property.  You can smell the cow manure we spread on our fields?  That’s the smell of spring in Granby!  You are behind us on the tractor?  You give us a wave as you pass with a wide berth.   You can hear the music from down the street?  Sit back, pour a lemonade and enjoy. We’ll repay you by keeping our town rural, pastoral, authentic.  Please do come visit us on September
6 – Granby’s Open Farm Day 2014!

–Farmer Kate, Maple View Horse Farm
   Maple View Farm Blog 5/2/14