Warning: Harsh reality ahead

Funny story. A man crafted a pretty little flyer that he thumb-tacked to the check-out bulletin board at the neighborhood market. The ad simply stated that he liked to tinker with old lawnmowers and was looking for a new project. The posting included his address and phone number.

He came home from the grocery store and found a half-acre-full of lawnmowers in various conditions on his half-acre of land.

This is why we do not share our address prominently on this website, on Facebook or any other easy-to-locate location.

BobThis is Bob. Bob is happy. Carlton is standing behind him, as are several hens of various histories and ages. They are happy, too. When Bob came here, he was not happy. He was recovering from abandonment, starvation, frostbite and likely a whole other host of horrors. Some of those chickens came with him. They survived because they found shelter from the coldest winter of the decade under the frozen carcasses of their flock. Carlton was abandoned by someone anonymous. We’re betting that they found out piglets–even pot-bellied minis–don’t fit in the palm of your hand forever.

If our address was easy to find, we would have more Bobs, Carltons and chickens that we could care for, no matter how hard we try. By no means whatsoever do I mean to suggest that Bob, Carlton, Beatrice, Lucy, Buddy, Freckles or any of the animals here on the farm animal sanctuary on the same level as a lawnmower. Lawnmowers we can load up, take to recycling and use the recycling funds to pay for food and medical care for the animals. These animals, however, trust us to provide for them for the rest of their lives, lives that we pledge to be existences of peace and contentment. That’s the least we can do to make up for what some of our fellow human beings have put them through.

So…

If you call us and we don’t answer right away, please leave a message. We will return your call as soon as everyone is tucked in or a scheduled program is completed. If you have an animal that you cannot care for, we will refer you to someone who can if we are unable. That is part of our mission.5K logo

Better yet…
Join us on October 1 for the first ever Quarry Farm 5K (registration info is listed under Events) and be part of that mission! You’ll walk, run or bicycle right past the gate.

Sophie’s choice

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Sophie meets Jamie Napolski, Assistant Curator of Education & Special Events for Sauder Village.

Yeah, yeah, yeah…I did go there with the title of this post.

But it’s true; Sophie the pot-bellied pig had her first road trip as an educational ambassador for The Quarry Farm, and this happened as a result of a choice she made on Friday.

As testified by the previous post, “Sticky toes and hiking sticks”, an entire third grade class joined us onsite for a Friday filed trip alongside Road 7L. The students and their teachers and chaperones rotated through stations, including a visit to the farm animal sanctuary. As we always tell visitors, once inside the gate, humans will have the opportunity to meet the sanctuary residents, but only those residents who choose to walk down the path for a face-to-face encounter. While it’s almost a guarantee that the bronze turkeys will show up, as well as at least one of the donkeys and a goat, the pigs are a little more unpredictable.

For instance, if the sun is shining and the temperature moderate, Carlton may mosey on down the hill for a belly flop and scratch. Queen Beatrice may sashay through the floodplain. If she could do the royal wristwave, I have no doubt she would, stopping only long enough for a brief pat before moving on for a nap in a warm pool of light.

As for the others, their early years were so harsh at the hands of neglectful humanity that visitors only get a distant glimpse. In Sophie’s case, beatings, poor diet and exposure left scars that have left her much older than what we think are her actual years. So it was a wonderful surprise when she chose to join the second group of students to rotate through. She even stayed close, allowing the third rotation to pet her softly on the forehead.

Because of Sophie’s decision to trust in the kindness of strangers, we took her on an hour-long car ride north for a program at Sauder Village in Archbold. While 19th-century reenactors read “If You Give a Pig a Pancake”, Sophie charmed young visitors and their families outside a log cabin in the Little Pioneer Village. Marshmallow the Nigerian Dwarf goat went along for the ride, too, but he’s an old hand at programs and conducted himself in his usual sweetly-mellow manner.

By the way, don’t give a pig a pancake.