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Education

“The soil is the great connector of lives, the source, and destination of all.”

Wendell Berry

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In this busy world we live in, we can sometimes get lost as to what’s important – for ourselves and especially for our children.  Getting outside and experiencing nature is what childhood should be about.  It excites the senses and encourages the world of exploration.  Education is key to our mission at Valley Crest Farm & Preserve. Our goal is to foster a learning environment by bringing families outdoors to experience nature and life on a farm – picking a fresh apple off a tree, exploring streams and ponds for insects, or planting a seed to watch it grow into a delicious vegetable is what we do through our family programs and classes that are not only educational for FUN for the entire family!

Upcoming Programs at the Farm

DIY Maple Sugaring Workshop

Visit us on the farm to learn how to make delicious maple syrup in your own backyard! This workshop will walk you through every step of sugaring- from identifying a maple tree to boiling sap down into syrup. Sugaring supplies will be available for sale after the event so that you can go home and make your own maple syrup!

February 17: 4:00- 5:30 pm

March 5: 11:00- 12:30 pm

Pre- registration is required. Please register through our events page or by emailing Rachel at education@valleycrestfarmnj.org

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Merit Badge Days are available now for Environmental Science and Mammal Study. Each course is $30 per scout. Pre- registration is required. Register by emailing education@valleycrestfarmnj.org or by calling (908) 531 0305.

Mammal Study: February 6-7 4-6pm

Mammal Study: February 19 10am-1pm

To schedule a program at the farm, Rachel McGovern, naturalist and educator at: education@valleycrestfarmnj.org or call 908 531 0305. She will be glad to create an informative and fun-filled program for your students or scout group. Most of our public family programs begin in May and run through November.  For children-only programs, fee is $5-7 per child and chaperones are free. For a few programs there is a small additional charge for materials. All program dates are subject to change.

NATURE BIRTHDAY PARTIES

For a unique experience to celebrate your child's birthday, come to Valley Crest! For a 3 hour party the fee is $250 for up to 25 guests. One hour will be devoted to a fun-filled and educational nature program with 2 hours for the party, setup and breakdown. Valley Crest provides tables and chairs and parents are responsible for decorations, food, drink, etc. We also require a $100 security/damage deposit that is refundable after the party. We also ask parents and family to chaperone, as needed.  For details, please email: info@valleycrestfarmnj.org or call 908.455.0691.

 

 

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DIG/SOW/GROW GARDEN SERIES

Ask children where their food comes from, and they’ll probably say McDonald's or the grocery store.  With more children on the computer and fewer outside in nature, this lack of connection with our food sources has become a systemic problem in our country.  A child’s health education starts with early nutrition and the belief is that if you start them early on healthy foods, it will set a habit for them later.

With that in mind, in spring 2015 Valley Crest Farm & Preserve offered DIG/SOW/GROW, an educational and fun-filled garden series for children, ages 8-14.  Classes were held every week where kids examined the relationships among the land, plants, and people. From sowing seeds in our greenhouse, then transplanting, weeding and harvesting fresh vegetables that THEY grew and tended throughout the season, the students were involved in every facet of farming to better understand where their food comes from.  Throughout the series, students got a chance to sample the fruits of their labor and prepare tasty treats with fresh ingredients from their garden, like the pizza party they made for themselves in late August.  A proud achievement for our young farmers who created the most spectacular garden!

We are looking for other groups (children and adults) who would like to participate in our DIG/SOW/GROW garden series in 2017.  For more information, please email:  info@valleycrestfarmnj.org

 

Education Photo Gallery

Valley Crest Farm & Preserve grows and donates fresh produce to help people in need, maintains its farm and forest for education and recreation, and encourages respect for farms and nature.

Valley Crest Preserve Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

14 Allerton Road, Lebanon, NJ 08833 • 908-238-9696 • info@valleycrestfarmnj.com