Friends of Holcomb Farm

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Beth Reis took this beautiful picture of Holcomb Farm, with a crown of foliage, this fall. We thank Beth for giving the Friends of Holcomb Farm permission to use this photo.

Harvest Dinner and Auction

Almost 100 friends of Holcomb Farm filled the gorgeous new Gallery at Metro Bis in November to relish expertly-prepared food, bid on donated items, and enjoy the community spirit of so many who make it possible for the Friends of Holcomb Farm’s Fresh Access program to continue to provide fresh, local produce to those otherwise without access. While some may assume November isn’t the best time to eat fresh from the garden, that’s not the case when Farmer Joe O’Grady, his crew, and Metro Bis Executive Chef Chris Prosperi join forces: Moroccan carrots; lettuce, radicchio, and roasted turnips salad; Brussel sprouts with Jerusalem artichokes; Red Dragon Napa cabbage slaw; sausage with sauerkraut; the best mashed potatoes ever; and warm bread pudding for dessert. Before and throughout dinner, guests bid on more than 40 items donated by local artists, businesses and friends. New this year were some beautiful hand-knit items donated by Granby Senior Center participants—some of the many individuals who benefit from the Fresh Access bounty.

Chef Prosperi provides this dinner at cost, meaning more than 50 percent of the ticket price goes directly to providing fresh produce to those in need through the Fresh Access program. We thank Chris for his longtime, loyal and generous support of Holcomb Farm.

Patty Connolly and Eric Lukingbeal were among the many guests at the Harvest dinner. Photo by Shirley Murtha

Think Local for Holiday Feasts

Hopefully, many readers loaded up on local produce and foods at the Lost Acres Vineyard Thanksgiving Farmers’ market. Don’t miss the final farmer’s market of 2019, the Holiday Market, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 21 at Lost Acres Vineyard. The farm  will be there with winter veggies and fresh greens, thanks to the expanded greenhouse and storage capabilities developed over the past several years (thanks in part to those grants, mentioned above).

After December 21, unless you are one of the lucky individuals who signed up early for the now-sold-out Winter CSA Shares, you will have to wait until June to enjoy the fruits of the Holcomb Farm CSA. To reserve your summer share now, read on.

Save on Summer Shares

We offer special pricing on our Summer CSA Shares through Jan. 1. When you reserve your CSA Share early, you help us plan for the summer ahead. In return, your 2020 Summer Share is at the 2019 price. Sales of full and half shares are open now at

Can’t use a whole share yourself? Buy a half share. Not sure what to do for that special family on your holiday gift list? Give them a gift that will keep giving for 20 full weeks, June through October.


Demand for local, chemical-free, and high-quality produce continues to grow, and with the demand, increased production from the Granby Agricultural community. The biggest challenge is distribution: getting the local fresh food to the people who want it, when they want it. To address this challenge, the farm has recently been diversifying how it makes its food available: winter and summer CSA full and half shares, Fresh Access partnerships, the retail store, wholesale to restaurants, and, most recently, go-bags.

A brainchild of Farm Manager Joe O’Grady, go-bags are pre-packed, Farm-determined assortments of veggies designed to be grabbed on the go. This past summer, the idea was tested at the local fitness center, CrossFit Simsbury. The go-bags give CrossFit members an easy option to pick up some fresh veggies for the week right at the gym. Owner Rob Olson has high praise for both Holcomb Farm and the budding program: “The alliance between CrossFit Simsbury and Holcomb Farm is one of mutual growth and admiration. At CrossFit Simsbury the goal is to get members happy and healthy. Working out three to six times per week is an important part of that, but even more important is a member’s nutrition and what they eat at home.”

The food Holcomb Farm provides is chemical-free, non-GMO, local and fresh. As CrossFit Simsbury nutrition coach Denise says, “it’s about as healthy as it can get! Not only that, their purchase supports a local nonprofit, the Holcomb Farm, and some very hard working individuals. We’re looking forward to many years of health and happiness working together!” Go-bags have sold out each of the eight weeks during this early testing period.

The Friends of Holcomb Farm will be looking for new partners next summer. If interested, please contact

At CrossFit Simsbury, Holcomb Farm’s new “Go-Bags” give Crossfit members an easy option to pick up some fresh veggies right at the gym. Gym members showed their excitement about the new program with mouth watering Instagram posts.

Holcomb Farm Annual Appeal

The Friends’ annual appeal and membership renewal is underway. Every annual donation of at least $25 confers membership in the Friends of Holcomb Farm, supporting the stewardship of this town-owned property, and the continuation of the Fresh Access program. We hope more of you will support our Farm this year. Please go to the website and click on the “donate” button. We give thanks to all our members and donors.

A final year-end thanks to The Granby Drummer, and all its volunteers. We are grateful for the opportunity to keep our community up-to-date on Holcomb Farm developments through these monthly articles. It takes a village, and the Drummer is a big reason that Granby is the great “village” that it is.

Remembering Gordie

At this year’s dinner, guests paused to recognize and give thanks for the many contributions of board member Gordon Bischoff, who passed away in July. Gordie was particularly instrumental in energizing the Friends’ grant writing efforts, to great success. We miss him.

President Bob Bystrowski presents Flo Bischoff and her son Gregg with a commemorative plate as a tribute to Gordon’s service to the board. Photo by Shirley Murtha