By James Kinneen
Hometown Weekly Reporter
On Friday afternoon, Powisset Farm hosted its spring equinox celebration. Originally scheduled for Saturday, the event was rescheduled because while Saturday’s forecast called for rain, everyone was looking to do something outside on Friday, when the weather was beautiful. With a large crowd on hand to enjoy pizza, drinks, live music, seed planting and the vernal pools along the farm’s trails, the date change was absolutely the right call.
In keeping with farm rhythms, Powisset Farm has both a solstice dinner and equinox celebration to acknowledge the changes in seasons. With thousands of plants being seeded in the greenhouse in anticipation of a plant and seedling sale at the end of April, one of the fun activities for those on hand involved families planting their own seeds. The kids seemed to love digging in the dirt to fill their planting pots, while the parents didn’t mind lending a helping hand in what was a decidedly springtime activity.
If you were willing to venture a little further, you could walk to the back of the farm and check out its vernal pools. Vernal pools are seasonal pools of water that serve as essential breeding grounds for animals like frogs and salamanders. While you could see a lot on your own, on April 30, there will be a guided hike, during which an interpretive naturalist will point out things you’d likely never have realized without their expertise.
If nature wasn’t your thing, there was live music from Cody Nilsen. Both a solo artist and a member of Ward Hayden and the Outliers, Wilmington’s Nilsen said he tours around 150 days of the year. He noted that he likes playing at the farm because it lets him both meet some people who wouldn’t normally come to his shows, and because he can both play some songs people know and mix in a few originals from a solo record he’s releasing soon.
Since it’s a working farm, you could also check out the wildlife, like the large boar, Santiago. Named after a beloved doctor of the farmer from whom Powisset got him, Santiago is the only male pig on the farm, and just welcomed piglets with Spot and Missy.
If farm life is something you’d be interested in, Gilbert is also running a 4H club at Powisset that she’s very excited about, which will feature interesting subjects like livestock and animal growing, tractor information, meeting a beekeeper and likely building an addition to the rabbit hutch.
Many of those in attendance at the farm on Friday were enjoying the pizza, a sneaky, outside-of-the-box contender for best pie in the area. Powisset Farm’s chef and farmers get together to plan their harvests, which determine things like the cooking classes and what they serve at farm-to-table dinners. For their outdoor events, Powisset opted for an outdoor pizza oven, because pizza is both beloved by young kids and families, as well as a great base for all their fresh herbs and vegetables.
“Pizza is so popular, and we have so many young families,” D.A. Hayden explained. “There are very few families that don’t like pizza, so it’s a great way to share the abundance of the farm on a level that everybody gets. And then we have pizza classes for children. Children who don’t like to eat vegetables, if they grow a vegetable or cook a vegetable, they’re going to eat that vegetable because they feel like it’s theirs.”
Pizza at the equinox event featured items like butternut squash that’s been curing through the winter, spinach from the greenhouse and micro-greens.
If they weren’t in the mood for food, kids could also play cornhole or use one of the giant Jenga sets to build into a tower. But with all these activities available, for many event-goers, just being outside and enjoying the end of winter was enough for them.
With its natural beauty, entertainment and good food, last Friday, Powisset Farm was the perfect spot to do just that.