Organic Farm Internship in Pennsylvania

Diverse, Small Scale Organic Farm Internship Opportunity in Northeast Pennsylvania for 2015

Organic Farm and GreenhouseOld School farm is located near the historic town of Honesdale in Northeast Pennsylvania and consists of a total of 50 acres. There are a variety of terrains including: river bottom, pasture, wetlands, woods, moss glades, and two small orchards. The sound of a small creek’s falls flowing behind the house and barn can be heard throughout the year. The view from the farmhouse kitchen and upstairs bedroom overlooks 15 acres of floodplain pasture ending along the meandering Dyberry Creek. The surrounding area is a mixture of wooded hillsides and rolling pastures, populated by local farms, vacation homes, local homes, and summer camps.

They are looking for two or three English speaking volunteer interns who can start work sometime in Mid may or the first week of June and stay until the end of August or September.  The interns will either be staying in a small, newly built hemlock cabin or the Amish built timber frame barn (completed in 2012), depending on the number of interns and whether the interns are a couple. They will have access to the full kitchen in the barn for cooking, the barn's outdoor shower for bathing, and a privy located near the cabin.  Behind the barn there is a large, wood fired cob oven which is used for pizza parties (usually followed by a jam session) a couple times per month and for baking breads.  It is best for the interns to have their own transportation if they are looking to get off the farm on their days off; however, for those content staying on the farm, transportation is not necessary.

For 2015 Old School Farm will be expanding their organic vegetable patch to about 1.5 acres and are looking begin baking bread to sell on farm and at market.  They have four Icelandic sheep with lambs due to arrive in late spring. They also have a bee hive, a flock of free ranging laying hens, heritage turkeys, and perhaps a couple of goats by spring.

Work days and tasks will vary, but interns are expected to work about 40 hours per week.  Daily tasks such as feeding and watering the chickens, turkeys, and sheep will be rotated between interns and the farm manager.  The interns will spend the majority of their time working the vegetable plots, harvesting, and processing food for storage (canning, freezing, etc.).  They will also help with property maintenance such as mowing fields, clearing electric fence lines of weeds, harvesting wood to heat the house in the winter, working on infrastructure and building projects.  Due to the nature of farm work, interns should be capable of physical labor and able to lift and carry a minimum of 50lbs (the weight of standard feed bags and hay bales).

Experience in any of the above tasks is good but not necessary as interns will be working closely with the farm manager as well as Roger Hill, a veteran organic farmer and soil expert of over 30 years who oversees the farm's soil fertility.  Interns will also be able to tap into Old School Farm's network of other local, sustainable and organic farms through monthly meetings, farm tours, and potlucks of the local chapter of Pennsylvania Association of Sustainable Agriculture (PASA).

Old School Farm's long term goal for the farm is self-sustainability; operating on its own with zero off farm inputs.  If you like diversity and are interested in experiencing a variety of work and learning opportunities on a small farm in a bucolic location, then this farm is a good match.

Activities available in the area include: hiking, fishing (trout stream abuts property), swimming, canoeing, biking, golf, shopping and museums. There is also a movie theater close by and the famous Wayne County Fair.  The website (loaded with fantastic stories and pictures) is:  www.OldSchoolFarmers.blogspot.com

If you are interested in applying, please send your resume, cover letter, and any other useful information to Dave at dacampeau@gmail.com.

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