Voting is now closed. Please keep checking the blog for the winner’s announcement!
I have been keeping a secret since May, which may be a new record for me. A very big secret. That I have kept [almost] completely to myself for four months now. And now that the day for revealing my big news has arrived, I find it difficult to begin.
I guess I should start by saying that the past three years have been a complete whirlwind for me. My flock, my farm, my CSA have been embraced by so many kind, thoughtful, wonderful people and, because of all that support, I have never been in the position of having to sell any of my animals for meat or send any of them to an uncertain (but really certain) fate at the auction. I will never be able to express what that means to me. Not if I live to be a million. Not ever.
Now that I find myself in the position of having more angora goats than I need to supply us with Mohair, I want to pass along the kindness you all have shown to me to another would-be shepherd. So, with the help of my good friend Lauria and the wonderful people at Sand Creek Post and Beam, we are giving away a small hand-spinner’s flock of our award-winning Angora goats and a custom-made Sand Creek run-in shed to house them in.
Obviously, this is going to be a bit more complicated than our regular giveaways.
Here’s how it works:
Anyone interested in entering this giveaway will need to send me an essay telling me why you’d like to have a small herd of Angora goats. Your essay can contain photos, video, whatever, but mostly I want to hear why you’d like to be a shepherd. Have you always wanted sheep or goats of your own? Do you yearn to set up your spinning wheel in the pasture amongst the goats? Tell me all about it.
All essays will be screened by me and Erin. If I think you have the acreage, dedication and heart to care for these animals, I will post your essay here on the blog. Then all of our readers will have the chance to vote of which essay they like best. Once y’all have narrowed the field to the top three, the folks at Sand Creek and I will select a winner.
The fine print: You don’t need to be a shareholder to enter. You don’t necessarily need experience with fiber animals to enter- everyone has to start somewhere- but you do need to understand the work involved in raising livestock. Do a little research into Angora goats before entering. Once we have chosen a winner, he/she and I will work together to put together a small flock that makes sense for the winner’s level of expertise. Beginning farmers should probably start with five wethered males; a shepherd with a working knowledge of Angoras might rather have five bred nanny goats. We’ll figure out what works best together and won’t let you leave with more than I know you can handle. I will also be available by email and phone while you learn the ropes.
Sand Creek Post and Beam will be shipping the custom-made run-in directly to the winner. [It comes unassembled with great instructions! Have I mentioned how much I love, love, love this company? As a matter of fact I have.] The livestock will need to be picked up at our New York farm by the winner within a month of the giveaway’s end. (I can recommend a reputable livestock shipper if necessary, but the cost of shipping will be incurred by the winner.)
All essays must be received by Wednesday, September 16th. I reserve the right not to award the flock to anyone if I don’t think there is a suitable candidate. These animals are my responsibility, and I won’t let them leave my care if I am not completely confident that they will have a have happy, healthy life in their new home.