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Celebrate the Great Outdoors-Again!

The Farmington Land Trust held their outdoor fundraiser for the Wilcox-Bushley Homestead Capital Campaign on May 1st (also known as the ancient Celtic holiday of Beltane). A festive pole decorated with multi-colored ribbons stood at the entrance of the homestead awaiting Maypole dancers. Scattered around the verdant lawn were various booths: Face-painting, Nature collage, Nature scavenger hunt, Seed planting, a barbeque, and the Honeypot raffle. Oak Barrel Wine & Spirits and Hog River Brewery offered wine and beer tasting.

The Blue Earth composting station was manned by owner and partner Sam King who directed everyone to the proper recycling containers. Blue Earth Compost will pick up your food scraps placed in their green receptacles weekly for a reasonable fee. The scraps are then taken to a facility in Southington and converted to energy.

(Photos by Ashley Raphael)

There was a Nature Walk with Naturalist Diane Tucker, and a Nature puppet story with West District School Kindergarten teacher, Sally Chaves . Children planted sunflower, radish and milkweed seeds to take home in little pots—a nod to plans for a future pollinator garden at the homestead.

A popular family activity was the Nature scavenger hunt for which there were prizes to choose from in one of the antique chest from the Wilcox-Bushley family, as well as a Nature Mural. The Nature Mural will be hung in the Wilcox-Bushley house when the renovation is complete.

The sunny afternoon culminated in drawings from the Honeypot Raffle.

Many of the booths were staffed by students from Farmington High and Miss Porters School. It was exciting to see teens volunteering and children enthusiastically involved in the activities. After all, they are our future and what better way to address climate change and environmental issues than to have the younger generations develop an appreciation for nature?

Bravo to the Farmington Land Trust for using compostable utensils at the food station where students offered delicious desserts.

Music and song filled the air, provided by Connecticut State Troubadour Nekita Waller and her accompanist.

150 people attended. The event made over $8,000 which will be used to convert the Wilcox-Bushley homestead to Farmington Land Trust Headquarters and more.

Thank you to all who volunteered and donated an item for the Honeypot Raffle; to Girl Scout Troop 61102 and to lead sponsors Connecticut Wealth Management, Hometown Foundation, Emily’s Catering, Priority Urgent Care and ConnectiCare.

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