About Our Farm
The farm is located on Oleksuk Road in the municipality of Neebing. It is roughly 150 acres. There is currently a barn, hay barn and garage. The Jarvis River, which is really a creek, runs through it. Although the farm is new to us, the land itself has its own history. It was farmed from 2010-2017 by Rob & Janice Groenheide as Walkabout Farm. They purchased it from the Olesuk family who had farmed it since the 1950s. The farmhouse itself is an original "Border House" that was moved from the U.S.-Canadian border to the farm in 1961. Its history led to the name of our farm.
All four of us are anomalies in the farming world as we did not grow up on farms. Beverly and Bryan began farming in the Haliburton area in the mid-2000s on a small 56-acre mixed farm. They raised lamb, pigs, chickens and cattle, and maintained a large market garden. They became regulars at the local farmer's markets and their products were sold directly to restaurants. Brody and Gwen were introduced to farming through them and began raising chickens and growing their own garden on 42 acres outside of Fort Frances in the community of Devlin. All four of us are first generation farmers with the additional distinction of starting when we were in our 40's and 50's respectively.
In 2017, the timing was right and Thunder Bay seemed the ideal spot to start our new farm together. Although Brody is the only true Northerner, having been born and raised in Thunder Bay, we all have come to appreciate this part of the country. The farming community has been very welcoming and we are excited by the support we see for local farmers.
We all became interested in farming for more than one reason, but one that we all share: we wanted to make sure our food was raised ethically and was of the highest quality. Both Brody and Beverly are accomplished home cooks (we would probably all consider ourselves "foodies" to some degree), which means that high quality ingredients are really important to us. A component of that was guaranteeing that our food was as natural as possible as we had family members that became ill when consuming commercially- produced meat. It is equally important to us that our animals live the most natural life possible, free from stress and with their needs well-taken care of.
We also believe that all of our practices on the farm should ultimately be sustainable. To us, this means that the land is in just as good (or better) condition than when we found it.