Horn Farm Center for Agricultural Education

Horn Farm Happenings – Like Family Around the Hearth

Dear Friends,

On the evening of October 25th, 2021, lightning struck the Horn Farm Center’s historic farmhouse, destroying the second and third floors. Fortunately, we were able to salvage our most important items and no one was injured during the event.

While this tragic event is unbelievably challenging and we are still grieving what was lost, we are choosing to accept that fire is a gift. We trust that this disruption will lead to extraordinary growth for the Horn Farm Center. 

Over the past two years the Horn Farm Center adopted new leadership, grew its staff, engaged over 160 volunteers, and launched its new signature Land Steward Training program. This year, we set out to plant 10,000 trees, and in October, we achieved that goal. It is from this foundation that we are reaching forward and planning our next steps.

In recent months, our board and staff have been working tirelessly on a new strategic plan, positioning the organization for growth and broader impact – both on the land and in our community. In addition to addressing our immediate needs due to this crisis, we are preparing to do whatever it takes to usher this new and evolving vision into reality.

We have our work cut out for us. The farmhouse was the heart of our operations from which we have served the York community ever since the County entrusted us with the land in 2007.
We plan to rebuild as quickly and as sustainably as possible, but that rebuild will take time. Although we are fortunate to have insurance, our expenses will exceed any insurance funds we receive.

In addition to reimagining and rebuilding the farmhouse, we remain committed to carrying out our mission.

In the days following the tragic fire, we experienced an incredible sense community. Like family around the hearth, the people of York County and beyond are gathering around us, sharing warmth, stories, and dreams with one another.

Over the next year you will receive a number of invitations to be a part of our efforts to rebuild and grow. Today, we are asking that you join us in this pivotal moment, as we birth a new iteration of the farm into being.

If you are able, please donate to the Horn Farm Center, either by check or online, where you can also find updated information about our fire recovery needs.

Some of you have responded to our calls for help and have already provided financial support. We are grateful for your commitment to our work. If you are unable to increase your donation at this time, please consider asking your friends and family to become champions of our mission.

We have a long road ahead of us, but we believe the future is bright. Together we will persevere and thrive.

Sincerely,

Alexis Campbell
Executive Director

Click here to donate now!


Horn Farm Happenings – October 25, 2021

Tonight’s turn of events is truly a test of our resilience. While we are devastated, we are incredibly thankful for the outpouring of support, prayers, and well wishes from our community. We are also endlessly grateful to the dozens of local fire companies, who worked through the night to get fire under control. A special thanks to Hellam Fire Company, who led the efforts.
In the coming days we will be taking stock and determining our next steps. What we do know now is that the third and second floor of the historic farmhouse building (our office building) have been destroyed. Fortunately, we were able to salvage our most important files, paperwork, archives, framed photos and maps, and a number of office equipment, computers, and items from the first floor. No one was on site or injured during the event.
We have had some requests about how to support the Horn Farm at this time. Most immediately, we are able to accept donations via our website: hornfarmcenter.org/donate or patreon: patreon.com/hornfarm We will likely need other support in the form of volunteering, supplies, and professional services. We will share more and keep everyone up to date as our needs and path forward become more clear.
We believe that our power and our resilience lies in our relationships. We have a long road ahead of us, but we know the future is bright. In my short time leading the farm, I have seen so many of you offer your passion, talent, and sweat, blood, and tears to this organization, because you all truly believe in the work we do. I am absolutely certain that together we will persevere. Let the ashes of this tragedy be fertile soil for our future growth and community.
– Alexis Campbell, HFC Executive Director
For direct inquiries, please contact info@hornfarmcenter.org. On behalf of the Horn Farm Center Board and staff we thank you for your support and patience.
If you plan to drive past the farm, we ask that you please do not approach the farmhouse building in the interest of public safety.

UPDATED: Horn Farm Center Health and Safety Policy

The Horn Farm Center is offering on-site educational programming with some modifications due to COVID-19. Multiple hand sanitizer stations are available. We will adjust as needed as time passes and things change.

In order to ensure the health and safety of our visitors, volunteers and staff, participant expectations are as follows:

  • Outdoors – Participants are required to bring a mask and wear it when physical distancing cannot be maintained. We have a limited supply on hand if you forget yours.
  • Indoors – Participants are required to wear masks indoors.
  • Do not attend if sick or recovering.

Horn Farm Happenings – October 15, 2021

10,000 Trees Planted & More Work to Do

It’s hard to believe that after just 2 weeks of planting we already reached our goal – but that’s exactly what we did! We set out to plant 10,000 trees this year, and today, we planted our final tree…well, for now. Over the next few months, we will begin working on designing another riparian buffer, an additional 4 acres on the other side of the creek that will be planted next year. Until then, we are celebrating our accomplishment and continuing to steward the land by removing invasive species, clearing brush, and bolstering the eroded banks of the waterway.

We couldn’t have accomplished this herculean task without our hardworking volunteers. We are absolutely humbled by their dedication to making a positive impact on our local ecosystem. A special thanks and kudos to Cindy Pizziketti, who volunteered over 140 hours on this project.

Although our tree planting is finished, we still need your help! Our Monday and Wednesday volunteer days will continue as we work to steward the riparian buffer. Some of the land stewardship activities that we will be engaged in are truly dirty work. We will be pulling vines, removing dead trees, pruning shrubs, and very likely getting wet and muddy. If you think you are up to the challenge, please join us on Mondays from 12pm-3pm or Wednesdays from 8am-11am until the end of October. Register using the link below.

A big thanks to the those who make our work possible. This project is funded by the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, PennVest, and The GIANT Company and Keep Pennsylvania Beautiful’s Healing the Planet grant program. This project is also supported by the Keystone 10 Million Tree Partnership and over 100 volunteers who came out to the farm to plant trees this year.

Click here to register to volunteer.


Celebrating the Close of the Pawpaw Season

We had so much fun at the 2021 Pawpaw Festival at the Horn Farm Center. A big thanks to Matt Schardt for capturing event and creating this video. Click the video link above to watch on Horn Farm Center’s YouTube channel!


Thank you for supporting Regenerative Agriculture!

That’s a wrap! The 2021 Horn Farm Center CSA came to close this week with a final share that included winter squashes, peppers, kale, swiss chard, lettuce heads, beets, garlic, and potatoes. We had an abundant, joy-filled year thanks to our loyal CSA members. We couldn’t do it without their support and investment in our work.

We also thank our partner farmers: Kilgore Family Farm, York Fresh Food Farms, and Green Barn Farm for partnering with us this year to provide a diverse variety of produce to our members throughout the season. We are eager to continue our partnerships with local farmers who align with our mission and values to steward the land in a way that regenerates its vitality.

Thanks for supporting regenerative agriculture and education at the Horn Farm Center. We hope to see you again next year! Keep an eye on our website for updates on the 2022 CSA program. 


ITEMS & REPAIR NEEDED

We are currently in search of a number of items and services that will help us achieve our mission to connect soil, food, and people in ways that improve the health and resilience of our community. 

  • Seeking an active or retired mechanic, who would like to offer their time to occasional volunteer projects on our farm equipment and vehicles
  • Utility vehicle and trailer (such as used golf card or gator)
  • Electric weed-trimmer
  • Electric leaf blower

Can you help out? To offer your time, talents, equipment, or tools, please contact Farm Manger, Andrew Horn at farmmanager@hornfarmcenter.org.

Can you help out? To offer your time, talents, equipment, or tools, please contact Farm Manger, Andrew Horn at farmmanager@hornfarmcenter.org.


UPDATED: Horn Farm Center Health and Safety Policy

The Horn Farm Center is offering on-site educational programming with some modifications due to COVID-19. Multiple hand sanitizer stations are available. We will adjust as needed as time passes and things change.

In order to ensure the health and safety of our visitors, volunteers and staff, participant expectations are as follows:

  • Outdoors – Participants are required to bring a mask and wear it when physical distancing cannot be maintained. We have a limited supply on hand if you forget yours.
  • Indoors – Participants are required to wear masks indoors.
  • Do not attend if sick or recovering.