GSSB General Meeting Saturday, Sep 9 5:15 PM at Festival

As the festival is the best time for many of us to get together, I would like to have a quick general meeting after the show closes on Saturday. Please come to the show ring bleachers in Barn 2 @ 5:15 pm for a quick meeting. I know it will be a long day so we will keep it short.

Looking forward to seeing you at the meeting.

Cheers,

Kevin Melvin

Spring General Meeting April 22nd and Note From the GSSB President

For our first general meeting this year, we are targeting Saturday, April 22nd. Time and location to be determined as a host volunteer is needed for this meeting.  If you are interested in hosting a general meeting or have topics that you would like covered during a general meeting, please let Reni  know.   

Note from the President Kevin Melvin:

Hi All,

As Mother Nature reminds us once again that she is the boss and delivers us a snow storm that feels more like February than mid-March followed by spring-like highs, I wanted to take the opportunity to send out my first message since becoming President of the group.

First I want to thank Eunice Bench for her time, tremendous efforts and her tireless work as President for more years than she probably cares to remember I look forward to her support and learning her secrets on being a successful President. Additionally I want to thank her for continuing on as the Festival Committee Chair and taking on the role of Treasurer.

Together with the other officers and committee members, we are planning for another great year for the club including a fabulous festival. In addition to regular festival planning committee meetings, we will continue to have general meetings at member’s farms on a weekend date in an effort to increase our meeting attendance. For our first general meeting this year, we are targeting Saturday, April 22nd. If you are interested in hosting a general meeting or have topics that you would like covered during a general meeting, please feel free to let Reni or myself know.

I have also set up a new email address for club business where you can reach me directly which is kmelvinnjsheep@gmail.com. I look forward to hearing from you and hopefully seeing you in person at our general meeting on the 22nd Once we have firmed up the logistics for the meeting including time and location, we will send an email and update the website with the information.

Cheers,

Kevin Melvin

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Highlights of the March General Meeting

The weather was spectacular, the hosts (Christian and Marci Bench, Meadowridge Farms) were great and there was a nice turnout!

We started with a tour of the facilities, starting with a peek at the ewes and lambs the Bench’s are raising. One of their successes is selling to a restaurant in Philadelphia.  They have a standing order of 8 lambs per week, but they must be of uniform size/ weight and the lambs must not have had any issues when growing up or the quality of their meat will be impacted.  Not an easy job!  They have also been experimenting to find the best cross breed that works for them.

March 2016 GSSB General Meeting at Meadowridge Farms
Suffolk x Romney ewes and lambs

There are also cows raised for meat here too.  They are beautiful!

March 2016 GSSB General Meeting at Meadowridge Farms
Beautiful cows!

Next there was more discussion about marketing lambs in front of the pens holding older lambs.

March 2016 GSSB General Meeting at Meadowridge Farms
Attendees
March 2016 GSSB General Meeting at Meadowridge Farms
Curly (one of the free range sheep) also attended

 

 

 

 

 

The final portion of the tour included a discussion of the programs available to farmers from the USDA.  These include many areas from micro loans, Ag Management Assistance Program (AMA), no till methods, Northern NJ River Friendly Farm Program and environmental quality (EQIP) cost sharing agreements to list a few.

March 2016 GSSB General Meeting at Meadowridge Farms
Free range sheep check out the USDA handouts

We also walked through the on-site Bed and Breakfast run by Tullamore Farms.  The Cooking School was running a children’s event so we did not disturb them to tour the kitchen.  A lovely picnic lunch was held in front of the B&B followed by a general business meeting.

Meeting Minutes

The next meeting is scheduled for the 1st half of June and a volunteer is sought to hold the meeting.  If you are a Northern or southern NJ or PA member who would be willing to host the meeting, please contact Eunice Bench as soon as possible.

Spring General Meeting March 12th

The general meeting for the club will be held on March 12th at 11AM. This will be held at Christian and Marci Bench’s home at Tullamore Farm just outside Ringoes, NJ.  In addition to a general meeting, Christian will talk about  marketing lamb and programs available for farmers to address resource concerns/ financial assistance for farmers as well as a tour of the bed and breakfast and farm cooking school. Please RSVP to christian.bench@yahoo.com  or  Cell Phone: (908) 399-4220.

Time: 11AM

Address: 1998 Daniel Bray Highway, Stockton NJ 08859  (Tullamore Farms)