What's New at Weatherbury Farm Vacation
Web Version of our August 2007 Print Newsletter, Weatherbury Moos

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In this Issue:
Moo-Ving Forward to Grass Fed Beef
Barnyard Updates
Farmstays Show Grass is really Greener on the Other Side
Grass Fed Beef -- Healthy for the Environment
And the Work Goes On
Weatherbury Farm Kids Update
It's a Green Health Farm Vacation



Grass fed beef is not only tasty, but healthy also:

· Less fat

· Fewer calories

· Low cholesterol

· Balanced Omega 3’s & Omega 6’s

· Rich in conjugated lineolic acid (CLA)

· High in vitamins A & E

· Rich in beta carotene

· Organic

· No artificial steroids     or growth hormones

· Pesticide & herbicide    free

· Locally grown & processed

· Packaged for the freezer in convenient portions— always a nutritious meal at hand


Because it is lower in fat, grass-fed beef is cooked at lower temperatures for shorter periods of time than corn-fed beef.  All orders will come with cooking instructions.  A cookbook is currently under development,

Weatherbury Farm’s dream of changing from a cow-calf operation to producing grass-fed beef for sale directly to the consumer is now a reality. The farm has begun taking orders for grass-fed freezer beef.

Order forms are on-line at grassfed.weatherburyfarm.com, Forms or also available by phone and email.


Barnyard Updates 

The 2007 junior goat gang ( 5 baby billies and one nanny) have taken on the job of greeting guests to the farm.

Bottle babies this year include Horace, a Hereford calf and two lambs, Southie, a Southdown lamb and Ashford, a Suffolk lamb. 


This year’s first group of new chicks has joined the flock.  An order for 25 more chicks has just been placed.  More guinea fowl (they’re the funny birds who eat ticks among other great traits) will be joining the barnyard later this summer. Indian Runner Ducks will be returning in early spring 2008.

Farmstays show the grass really is greener on the other side
As reported by Suzy Walrath, in  Arthur Frommer Budget Travel  May 2006 

" Any advice columnist would have said my family really needed a vacation. Over the past year, we spent far too much time at The Home Depot and U-Haul storage centers (we were renovating a house), as well as hospital rooms (too many reasons to explain). My children, Arjun and Araxi, are 9 and 7 years old--beyond the sandbox but not yet concerned about the fine line between cool and not cool. While trying to imagine what they'd most enjoy, I thought back to lessons learned from previous vacations, including the fact that spectacular scenery is for grownups. My kids love fun, hands-on activities and time to hang out together, and absolutely hate waiting in lines. For their sake and to preserve my sanity, I wished for all of these things, too. A farm with cute animals and a place to swim seemed like the perfect simple solution. The idea apparently appealed to another generation, as my parents wound up joining us.

Through the Pennsylvania Farm Vacation Association I found Weatherbury Farm, a B&B and working farm where guests help with the animals (1061 Sugar Run Rd., Avella, 724/587-3763, weatherburyfarm.com, $138 for a family of four). Owners Dale and Marcy Tudor decided after staying in various European pensions with their son Nigel that they wanted to run a B&B. While many B&Bs are filled with antiques and seek rich couples rather than families for guests, the Tudors decided they'd rather open an establishment that would appeal to children. They opened Weatherbury Farm, with a pool and six guest rooms, in 1992. 


Our quarters, Mother's Sewing Room, had a black-and-gold foot-pedaled Singer machine as part of the decor, drawing Arjun and Araxi's attention for hours. They also inspected the steamer trunk, which stored extra bedding, and admired the claw-foot bathtub. I swear they never noticed the room had no TV.

After a delicious breakfast of apple pancakes and a bacon-and-egg casserole, Farmer Dale -- everyone calls him that -- guided us through the morning chores. We started by priming the hand pump. Anyone under 50 pounds had to put his or her entire body into this job. Araxi dangled from the handle a few times, and we managed to pump enough to give the animals their water. As we lugged buckets to the barn, my kids started talking about how hard farmers work. Geese, ducks, and guinea hens hung around in the background, and cats and kittens were everywhere. Farmer Dale showed us how to unroll a hay bale, and we fed the sheep and goats. The sheep ate out of our hands, which tickled. Arjun and Araxi used a baby bottle to give milk to a kid -- the goat kind, with tiny hoofs and cute little teeth. It drained the bottle in less than a minute, and my kids were beyond thrilled.

Up at the henhouse, Farmer Dale opened the bird-size door, and chickens paraded out. We walked in the people-size door to deliver feed and water, and to gather beautiful pastel blue and green eggs. We didn't hang around long. 'It smells worse than Yellowstone Park in there,' Arjun said. 


Once each morning's chores were finished, we had nothing in particular scheduled, though the children were given a packet of farm-related games and puzzles. We were free to explore the farm, which was always full of important lessons: On our way to the cow pasture, Farmer Marcy cheerily called out, 'Remember, everything that's brown isn't dirt.'

I also learned that as long as there were enough kittens to go around, everyone was happy. My kids found the side porch where more than a dozen cats and kittens gathered on drizzly days. They fell in love with Frankie, a six-week-old tabby with blue eyes who was small enough to curl up in their hands.

The hard part was getting my kids to leave the farm--and particularly, the porch with all the cats--for lunch and dinner. Pretty much every activity that took us off the farm, including a trip to an old-fashioned soda fountain, ended with the kids begging to go back.

At the end of our stay, Arjun and Araxi were given certificates that declared them Official Weatherbury Farm Kids. My parents were delighted with all the time they spent with their grandchildren. I was so relaxed I felt like I'd been to a spa.

When school started, Araxi had to do a report about what she had done over the summer. She drew a map of Pennsylvania decorated with kittens, along with an X in the southwest corner marking the farm. At the bottom of the page, she wrote: 'We got to do chores!'  "

Grass Fed Beef — healthy for the environment

Raising grass fed beef not only produces a healthy end product but it is good for the environment  since the animals are not fed corn as in feedlots:

  • · Builds soil organic content

  • · Minimizes soil erosion

  • · Saves approximately 1/2 gallon of fuel per pound of meat

  • · No pesticides or herbicides into soil & water

  • ·  Increases soil permeability

  • · Reduces flooding

  • · Nutrients recycled naturally

  • · Builds riparian buffers

  • · Increases earthworms & other beneficial organisms

 To turn Weatherbury Farm from traditional cow-calf  to grass-fed beef , Weatherbury is establishing an intensive rotational grazing program. Perimeter pasture fences will be replaced , interior and streambank fencing are being built and a system to provide water to individual paddocks will be installed.

Rotational grazing makes better use of the farm’s resources,  giving the grass the chance to “recover” and grow more lush.



At Right: Nigel & Dale work on a spring development to bring water to the cows in the new rotational grazing system.

(Notice their new toy! )

And the work goes on

Weatherbury Farm continues to be a work in progress. As always, there’s much on the “to-do” list for 2007.

The bricking of the patio at the Livery, started in 2005, is on the to-do list for this summer and fall.   The patio is a wonderful spot to relax and watch nature in action.

Weather permitting (warm sunny days), the farm painting crew will again be

working on re-painting the farmhouse and outbuildings.

Work progresses on  the new farm workshop. Farmer Dale and Nigel are ecstatic that they will be able to work on the farm equipment indoors (and maybe even restore our old tractors to their original condition).

The Locust Grove, formerly part of the farm’s pasture, has been  cleared to provide

a seating area (& soon a hammock) to enjoy the sounds and sights of the farm. On a summer’s afternoon, guests have found it a great spot to picnic and watch farm life in action.

And, of course, there is always fence to be built.




Weatherbury farm kids update

Over 960 children have completed Weatherbury Farm’s  Kids Program through the end of July 2007.

Through the years, many of our young guests have progressed from completing the worksheet and becoming a “Junior Weatherbury Farm Kid” to  the “Weatherbury Farm Kid” workbook  and certificate.  Children who have completed the “Weatherbury Farm Workbook” on a previous

visit now will be able to broaden their horizons with the “Junior Weatherbury Farmer Workbook.”

Junior farmers will add to their ag-knowledge, learn about farming in the 21st century, agriculture in their lives and more about farm operations.

All families staying two or more nights are

 invited to participate in the program. Families  receive a packet (filled with coloring & activity books and educational materials) about farming .

Families who can only stay one night may, of course, help with chores. A one night stay, however, is not long enough to complete the worksheet/workbook. 


It’s a Green health farm vacation!

Goodness grass-cious!  Purchase Weatherbury Farm Grass Fed Beef to receive beef bucks, applicable to any multi-night stay this autumn.

And did we mention, that the average American (who eats 67 pounds of beef a year) will just by switching from      corn-fed to grass-fed beef, save 16,642 calories a year — that’s a 9 ½ pounds weight loss in a two year period without changing anything else in your life (betcha didn’t know that Weatherbury Farm is now a health farm!)

Take a walk on the green side and find out more 

about eco-friendly grass fed beef when you visit Weatherbury Farm.

You don’t have to fret over you carbon footprint, either. Every pound of beef you eat saves ½ gallon of gas. So do the math and see if you can come to Weatherbury Farm and enjoy a net zero CO2  vacation without the environmental guilt.  Did we also mention that management intensive rotational grazing is one of the best ways to sequester carbon and improve soil fertility at the same time?

Weatherbury Farm Beef Bucks:

One-half beef = $88 beef bucks

One-quarter beef = $88 beef bucks

One 35# box of hamburger = $12 beef bucks

Offer subject of Availability    Non-transferable

Home       About Weatherbury Farm      Lodging       Activities       Media Accolades
Availability on line       Brochure      News       Contact us

News:      What's New at the Farm       Awards       Publications    Green Tourism @ Weatherbury