Wednesday, October 14, 2015

CATS, DaCy Meadow Farm Opening New Trail

12087818_10153419335194843_300363278908098642_oIt really is mind boggling to think that not too many years ago hiking routes around the Adirondack Coast were slim to nonexistent. Now six years later Champlain Area Trails (CATS) and a host of volunteers have built over 35 miles of trails and improved dozens of existing paths. This Saturday CATS will open a newly expanded trail and join forces with a Westport family farm to celebrate trails and local food.

I had the pleasure to listen to DaCy Meadow Farm owner Cynthia Johnston speak about creating school gardens when she was still the superintendent at Keene Central School (NY). Johnston’s own experiences as an organic farmer were instrumental in helping the Keene school hire staff to create homemade, local, sustainable food for its student population.

Now retired, Cynthia and her husband David focus on the local food movement at their Westport DaCy Meadow Farm. The Johnstons purchased the 150-acre hay field in 2003 and have built an active farm of Heritage Livestock. Since each of the Johnstons grew up on a family farm and came from educational backgrounds, the farm activities are a natural blending of interests to help educate people in the local food movement.

On Oct 17th, CATS is hosting a grand opening of a newly expanded 2-mile trail loop that just happens to also be on DaCy Meadow property. The easy loop crosses through fields, over a stream and wetlands to enter the nearby woods and loop back. The $25 donation includes the 11:30 am guided walk with Bill Amadon and a wonderful 1 pm DaCy Meadow Farm lunch. (Children under 12 are free.) All proceeds will be contributed toward a matching grant for the CATS stewardship coordinator program.

The Farm Trail Hike and Harvest Lunch is a unique opportunity to not only see the trail through the expert eyes of artist and guide Bill Amadon, but to taste a meal that has been grown and cooked on the farm. Don’t worry if you can’t make the grand opening, the trail will be open year-round and the DaCy Meadow Farm Natural Meat Store is open by appointment (518-962-2350) or when the open sign is flying. Enjoy!

View of DaCy Meadow Farm used with the permission of Champlain Area Trails (CATS)


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Diane Chase is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities guidebook series, Adirondack Family Time. She writes about ways to foster imaginative play through fun-filled events and activities in the Adirondack region.

From her home in Saranac Lake, Diane also writes a weekly family-oriented newspaper column for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise and keeps her own blog Adirondack Family Time. Her writing and photography has appeared in numerous newspapers, magazines, marketing companies and advertising agencies.

She even finds time to assist her husband with Adirondack Expeditions guiding families and young adults in the High Peaks.

One Response

  1. Avon says:

    I see a link at the foot of the article to a pdf, but it’s a list of winter trail options with no information or description about any one of them.

    What I’d like to see is a link to CATS itself! Or, better yet, a collection of descriptive blurbs on each option, ideally arranged by geographical locations. (Clicking on the link that is CATS’ full name, in the first paragraph, produces a very practical map. Though it’s doesn’t actually give any information about the organization, and it’s also not what I want right now, it would be good to indicate that it gives readers a map to view or save.)

    In short, I favor a minute or two, per article, of editor input!

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