News and blog
Dear Friends of White Rose Farm:
Thank you for supporting our efforts to engage and involve people in caring for and connecting with the land and each other. With donations from you and others, we held five seasonal celebrations this year: a May Day celebration, a barn dance for summer solstice, a salsa party in high summer, a puppet show for Fall Equinox and a drum circle to honor the ancestors for All Saints Day.
City and country folk, young and seasoned, immigrant and native, black and white, joined together to create these community events. Here is a gallery of images and some comments from participants:
The fireflies were spectacular. As we left the moon was rising and the last glimmer of sun was going down in the west. Thank you for the reminder of beauty in the simplicity of nature. Rebecca
The Salsa Party created such an enchanting atmosphere that even my hubby danced—that’s magic! Holly
Thank you for opening your farm to us. We had a great time! Always enjoyable to see the Beech Tree Puppets! We especially enjoy warm company of you and your guests! Michelle
Thanks for a lovely evening. I enjoyed it very much. And I so needed it today as I really felt the need to be “cleansed”. The stars and the moon were so beautiful and all in all the time there was very grounding. Jacquie
We want to offer these events again next year and add educational programs for children and families. We know that engaging people in caring for the land, the natural world and each other serves as a foundation for the future.
This has been an especially harsh and difficult year for local farmers. We are grateful that we are still here to tell stories about it! Now more than ever we need the support of friends like you. Please show your support with a generous gift to our annual campaign. Click here to donate.
The world is changing; many are struggling. Please help us share our harvest and important information about how we can participate in caring for our most important resource: life--within ourselves and within Mother Earth!
Thank you so much!
Sally Voris, Founder and Executive Director
White Rose Farm Circle, Inc.
A copy of the current financial statement of White Rose Farm Circle, Inc. is available by writing 5009 Teeter Road, Taneytown, MD 21787 or by calling 410-756-9303. Documents and information submitted under the Maryland Solicitations Act are also available for the cost of postage and copies from the Maryland Secretary of State, State House, Annapolis, Md 21401, (410)974-5534.
I farm the present moment,
A place where inner and outer landscapes meet.
A place beyond past and just short of future
A place of mystery, possibility and shadow.
Dare I enter?
The garden beckons
And I am called to bring forth seeds
Out of my own dark spaces.
What gifts do they bring? What terror?
Some I bury; some I burn.
Some I plant in fertile ground,
scatter to the winds or lift to the rising sun.
What will blossom and fruit?
What will emerge stunted, deformed?
What will wither in sudden frost, harsh winds, blistering sun, drought?
What must I kill?
What a marvel this process of ripening,
Of meeting the moment: its delight and peril,
Of marrying inner and outer, Heaven and Earth, self and other,
This call to live!
What does this moment hold for you?
Four of us gathered today to prepare for our Drum Circle to Honor the Ancestors tomorrow night. We strung lights, set the benches, created a community altar and placed the first mementos there.
Tomorrow night, Grandmother Michelle Moreau and Paul Thomas, will lead us in honoring our deceased loved ones (family, friends and pets). We will place photos, mementos and/or a small offering of food or flowers on a community altar. We will share stories, dance, sing songs and drum in the Old Chestnut Barn. We will then send offerings into the fire at the fire circle. Snacks will be provided.
All are welcome to bring food to share and percussion instruments to play. Cost: $10/adult; $15 parent and child; $25/family. Space is limited. Register here.
This event helps me remember those I loved, reminds me to live as I want to be remembered and to spend time with those I love. What a fine way to spend an evening! We hope you will join us! Please RSVP if you can.
Sally Voris, White Rose Farm
Why come to a drum circle to honor the ancestors? What is its relevance now?
In this moment in our culture, when our institutions and social structures are fracturing, we will come together in the spirit of community, to honor our shared humanity and to honor the Earth, from whom we have emerged and to whom we will return. We will leave the world of polls and pundits and return to the roots of our culture: night sky, pregnant earth, stories, song, drum and fire. That world so fills our senses and is so rich in meaning, that it restores our humanity.
Traditional cultures honored the Earth at the change of seasons. They recognized that the cycles of the seasons mirrored the cycles of life. They recognized time halfway between the solstices and equinoxes as significant transitions. (We still recognize Groundhog's Day, May Day and Halloween. Lammas, a High Summer Feast, has been almost forgotten in our modern culture.)
At the end of October, as leaves fall off the trees; life returns to its bare bones: roots and seeds. When those we love die, their ashes or bones return to the Earth. It is the time when many cultures honor their dead: Christians celebrate All Saint's Day; pagans Halloween; Mexicans, the Day of the Dead.
But why is this important? For me, we open to a longer view—a view beyond the politics of the moment. We choose to honor those who came before us—blood ancestors, those who have inspired us; those who have created the world as we know it, pets that we have loved. As we share our stories and songs, we recognize our common ground. We act now knowing that our actions and intentions support the great circle of life. We trust that some day, we, too, will be honored.
This year, Grandmother Michelle Moreau and Paul Thomas are leading our circle. Grandmother Michelle asks you to bring photographs or mementos of your loved ones, as well as flowers or food to share with them.
Paul Thomas, of Samara Healing Center, will lead a drum circle to help us express the rhythms of naure and the cosmos through the voice of the drum. Those drumbeats will reverberate around us in our chestnut barn and down into the Earth, connecting our drumbeats and heart beats with the heartbeat of the Earth. Weather permitting, we will end with a fire circle and send our blessings skyward.
Encouraged by Grandmother Michelle, I made an altar of my own a few weeks ago. I searched the house for just the right mementos, a photograph of mentors, of my Grandmom and my grandparents, a crocheted tablecloth from my aunt, a tea cup and a cobalt blue vase for my mom, homemade bread and jam for my Granny, a bottle of wine just because—and fresh flowers and a candle. I shared my stories of those items with a friend. We both felt closer. I was surprised by how creating the altar of favorite things mellowed me.
If you are not able to join us in person, I invite you to remember your loved ones at this time of year. Light a candle, say a prayer, remember a favorite story, share with a friend, or do what Grandmother Michelle suggests and make an altar of your own for your loved ones, including flowers and food.
Let us know what the experience was like for you, if you choose. And may your journey inside be rich and meaningful as the leaves fall and the cold winds blow....
Mark your calendars and plan to come honor your ancestors!
In this family-oriented event, led by Grandmother Michelle Moreau and Paul Thomas, we will honor our deceased loved ones (family, friends and pets) by placing photos, or mementos and a small offering of food or flowers on a community altar. We will share stories, dance, sing songs and drum in the Old Chestnut Barn. Weather permitting, we will then send offerings into the fire. Snacks will be provided.
All are welcome to bring food to share and percussion instruments to play, if desired. Cost: $10/adult; $15 parent and child; $25/family. Space is limited. Register here.
Sally Voris, White Rose Farm
There is still a half a hog available for sale as the hogs go to Bullocks in Westminster for butchering tomorrow. I am selling these hogs live weight. I estimate that half of one of these hogs will be about 75 pounds. You should get about 40 pounds of premium pork.
These are Guinea hogs, a heritage-breed homestead hog that according to one friend is the fourth best tasting hog in the world. A customer who ordered a hog last year concurs!
We are charging $3.50/pound live weight for the hog. The butcher will charge his own fees, which I estimate at around $50.And the butcher will need to know by Wednesday or so how to cut the meat.
Interested? Please contact me ASAP! Thanks.
Sally Voris, White Rose Farm
They sky is clearing and it looks like we will be able to see the stars tonight!
The sun just peaked out from behind the clouds; the weather report is not calling for more rain until after 9:00 p.m. so we are open to creating an event at the farm this evening. There are potatoes to dig, dirt to turn and animals to tend and feed, We have dry wood, a fire circle and a telescope available.
Few places are as grounding as a farm, so we offer the farm as a place to get present, grounded and balanced. With the political climate as it is, it might be just what is needed! Come dig potatoes, spend time with the farm animals, share stories, songs and drumming around a fire. Join us, if you feel so moved--anytime between 4:00 and 9:00 p.m. Bring food to share. We will accept free-will offerings for this evening. .
Sally Voris, White Rose Farm
Few activities restore my soul as easily or deeply as working in the garden with others. I invite you to join me! In October, we will host our volunteer time on Saturday evenings with a fire circle following the work, weather permitting. This Saturday, we will have a star gazing program starting at 7:00 p.m. (for a nominal charge.)
As part of our volunteer work, I plan four us to spread biodynamic preparations on the garden. The volunteer time will include an introduction to biodynamic agriculture. This form of agriculture was initiated by Rudolf Steiner in 1924. It includes working with the rhythms of nature and of imagining one's farm as a living organism. The farm will provide volunteers with food for roasting over the open fire and we invite people to bring food to share. Please bring tools, gloves and wear mud-worthy footwear. It is often colder and windier here, so bring an extra layer of clothing.
Volunteer time is free and appropriate for families with school-age children, though there is a reasonable charge for the star gazing program. The sky may be exceptionally clear after a big storm. It is also just past the new moon, the best time of the month to see the stars. Bring stories, songs, drums and musical instruments to share around the fire after the meal.