Inside the main tent
The main tent at the Conference
Doris and Mandy in their pen
The sign at the entrance to Hampshire College
2006 NOFA Summer Conference
Hampshire College,
Amherst, Massachusetts

August 10-13, 2006
        The NOFA (Northeast Organic Farming Association) Summer Conference was held at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts on August 10th through 13th, 2006, and Randall cattle were there!  The Registry set up an exhibit for the 3 day event, and many Conference goers got their first look at a Randall heifer.  Over the course of the event, three Randall heifers from Howland Homestead Farm, "Mandy", Astilbe", and "Doris" took their turns two at a time acting as ambassadors for the Randall breed and Registry.  Registry officers Cynthia Creech, Phil Lang, and Dianne Lang also took turns making the trek to Amherst to man the exhibit and spread the word about Randall cattle.
        The NOFA Summer Conference is an annual affair and this year was its 32nd.  It is a multi-faceted event, a chance for like-minded people to get together and learn new things, get to know each other, have some fun, and hopefully return to their farms and lives with some new energy.  There were many workshops of all descriptions, panel discussions, exhibits and vendors, and much more than can be covered here.  A Children's Conference and a Teen Conference running concurrently provided something of interest for all age groups.  Conference attendees could opt to stay at the college for the weekend either in a dorm or at a campsite, and Organic meals were served.
        The Conference was officially kicked off on Friday night with a keynote address, this year delivered by Sr. Miriam Therese MacGillis, co-founder of Genesis Farm in New Jersey.  Genesis Farm is a biodynamic farm and learning center, where "people of good will are welcome to search for more authentic ways to live in harmony with the natural world and each other".  In addition to the Conference this year there was a "Pre-Conference", which  was held Thursday through Friday morning. On Saturday afternoon there was an "Old-Fashioned Fair and Farmers' and Crafters' Market", which brought in many additional vendors and offered contests and games, music, a trick riding horse show, and much more.
        Mandy, Astilbe, and Doris performed perfectly for a Conference crowd of well over 1000 people, many of whom came by the Registry's exhibit to see and pet them.  They took their role in Satruday's parade in stride, despite being closely followed (and sometimes engulfed!) by over 50 boisterous children.  The weather was perfect, with low humidy and temperatures in the high 70's.
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"Doris" and "Mandy"
resting in the shade
Jill Horton-Lyons of Winterberry Farm holds a duckling for petting
Inside the main tent
"Astilbe" was a hit with visitors, especially the children
The main tent at the Conference
The Registry's display
There were vendors and exhibits...
Basin Farm sold pizza and pancakes using their own farm-grown spelt
Winterberry Farm brought
sheep for a workshop
Vendors in the covered entry
of Franklin Patterson Hall
General massage and foot reflexology was available
The Randall heifers were a favorite of young and old
A pen of ducks and geese
proved to be irresistable
A crowd gathers around "Jack" and "Joe" at the children's Ox Workshop
Taking turns combing the oxen
A brave young workshop goer tries her hand at driving
The Randall Cattle Registry, Inc.
        The Official Website of Randall Cattle
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Children petting a duckling held by Jill Horton-Lyons
The Registry's display at the 2006 NOFA Summer Conference
A youngster visits with Astilbe
The tent for Basin Farm, a vendor selling spelt pancakes and pizza
Sheep from Winterberry Farm
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"Old-Fashioned Fair and Farmers' and Crafters' Market"
Vendors in the entry of Franklin Patterson Hall
A young workshop goer driving the ox team
The children's ox workshop
Combing an ox at the workshop
Getting a massage
Mandy with visitors
Ducks and geese draw attention
...And an Ox Workshop For The Children.
The Randall Cattle Registry, Inc., The Official Website of the Rare Randall (Lineback) Cattle Breed.