‘Spring for Zenger Farm’ welcomes folks to live celebration

Discover why the ‘Open Farm Day’ held on their outer East Portland property safely delighted families who visited Zenger Farm …

Outside, under the shelter of the Zenger Farm Grange in the Powellhurst-Gilbert neighborhood, families arrive to participate in this live “Spring for Zenger” day.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

It’s been quite a while since we’ve been invited to a “live” Zenger Farm event, primarily due to COVID-19 coronavirus concerns.

But, during afternoon of March 20, with rain falling – ranging from a light mist to a heavier rain – we took up Zenger Farm on the invitation to come back for a visit.

Zenger Farm staffer Samantha Cave is on hand to welcome both long-time supporters, and folks new to their program, to the day’s festivities.

“Today is ‘Open Farm Day’, a featured part of our ‘Spring for Zenger’ event, where we’re also celebrating the Spring equinox here at the farm,” explained the nonprofit organization’s Development & Marketing Coordinator, Samantha Cave.

She reminded that this was to be a ticketed “timed-entry” celebration, to help keep both guests and staff safe, and making it easier to maintain social distancing during the visit.

Tea enthusiast Jen Maynard, Zenger Farm’s Community Chef Program and Community Engagement manager, selects ingredients to prepare custom-blended tea for guests.

“We have some activities going on for families; we also have a group of senior citizens here, which is fun,” Cave told East Portland News. “We have several activities out on our deck today.”

She pointed out a location on the front of the Grange where a staff member was, on-the-spot, blending herbal tea beverages – just right for the chilly, damp afternoon,

Handing out pots to be painted, here are Zenger Farm Co-Executive Directors Colleen Dixon and Rob Cato.

We found, painting a pot, young guest Elyse Cabrera, receiving encouragement from Kathy Flach.

“And, our main activity is a terracotta pot painting; we have several stations set up where visitors can decorate their pots, and take them home with a plant inside,” Cave pointed out. “And then, down at our Children’s Garden, families can participate in on-the-farm ‘chores’, such as weeding, planting, and other tasks.”

The idea of declaring the “live” farm day was to invite people out to visit the Zenger Farm, Cave explained.

Longtime Zenger Farm supporters Reynolds Arthur Academy student Imasees Parker and mom, Seahdom Edmo show off their brand-new T-shirts.

“It’s really important to us to support our local community members in a safe socially-distanced way, and to allow them to ‘get their hands dirty at the farm; so, it’s really great so far,” observed Cave. “Also, we’re seeing a lot of new faces here; it’s great to welcome people who have never been to the farm before, and to be able to introduce them to our programs.”

For those longing to get damp and a little muddy, the Children’s Farm offers activities.

Learn more about Zinger Farm by visiting their official website: CLICK HERE to do so.

© 2021 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™


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