Last weekend we did a “farm crawl.” There are several family farms in our area that are looking seriously at the way our food is produced and the impact on our earth and they are doing something about it. I am so excited to share the experiences that we have had as we discover the family farms in our region. Our first stop, Dare 2 Dream Farms.
I have had the good pleasure of working with Megan & Jeremy Raff, owners and founders of Dare 2 Dream Farms over the past month. I have fallen in love with their philosophy of caring for the earth and the community. They have taken a single acre of biodynamically farmed land and toiled, tilled, planted, and cared for it until it produced food to sustain themselves, their friends, and the community.
When we arrived, Megan was running back and forth getting the hundreds of baby chicks down to the farm stand for their new owners to pick them up. Last weekend they sold over 500 chicks to new homes. See the previous blog post about the phenomenal urban chicken movement. There was an adorable family with three small boys picking up their new chicks. The boys were ecstatic. On Friday and Saturday, the farm is teeming with families picking up their chicks. See the D2D homepage for the COVID-19 precautions taken on the farm.
It was a gorgeous day. Our granddaughter, Emma, was pretty excited to pick some flowers off the side of the road but wasn’t much interested in the chicks, goats, cow, or ducks. As you walk past the farm stand up the road you can see the chicken houses and the duck condos. The goats have their own little area. One goat mama, Luna, just had 3 little kids. Dare 2 Dream Farms, located just outside of the Lompoc, CA city limits on La Salle Canyon, grows fresh produce, raises chicks for sale, gathers cage-free eggs, and collaborates with other smaller producers of craft items. They are helping the community by providing access to fresh produce at the farm stand, delivering CSA boxes to home or office, or dropping off at points throughout the county.
The farmstand is open 7 days a week with freshly collected items for sale to the public. Since the shelter-in-place order was given to SB County, the number of CSA memberships has been overwhelming. “We wanted to help our community,” said Megan. In order to expand the number of community members served, Dare 2 Dream Farms has increased the number of CSA memberships available by 400%. Their small farm couldn’t produce enough to fill the need of the community on their own, so they partnered with other farms to offset the need to provide fresh food to the community of Lompoc, and the surrounding area of Northern Santa Barbara County. There are several small, family farms that are benefited by the collaboration with Dare to Dream Farms. “Instead of shipping eggs to retailers in other communities, all our eggs have been reserved for our CSA and Farm Stand customers,” stated Co-owner, Jeremy Raff. This type of stimulus is exactly what the community needs. By purchasing items from small local businesses and craft food vendors such as local honey, coffee, mushrooms, bread, tonics, handmade body products, and more, we help these farm families to continue to live off the land and provide the community with fresh, handcrafted items. All these items are offered for purchase at the farm stand or through the CSA membership boxes.
What started as a country boy falls in love with a city girl, they create a chicken ranch, hatch more chickens, plant a garden, have children, and feed the community, has not ended yet for Jeremy and Megan. Currently the premier supplier of baby chickens for the Urban Chicken Movement in California, Dare 2 Dream Farms will continue to grow and continue to provide organic, seasonal produce to keep the community healthy and happy. If you would like to learn more about Dare to Dream Farms and all the ways the community is benefited from family farms like theirs, visit the website at www.dare2dreamfarms.com.
Take your family on a field trip and visit in person and get your fruits, veggies, and other items at the farm stand everyday 10:00 a.m. – Dusk.
While you are on the website, register so you can post questions on the forum or comments about the farm, the chickens, or other midnight musings you might want to share with the community of Dare 2 Dream Farm members. Hope to see you on the farm soon.