Leslie: Hey there veggies eaters! I am Leslie Lewis – one of the three farmers growing food for Second Wind CSA. I come from small town beginnings in a rural(we’re talking 4,000 people! ) town in central Illinois – the land of big corn. Growing up, my mother worked as an agronomist for the Natural Resource Conservation Service of the USDA, helping corn and soy farmers plan and map their systems. However, I didn’t lean into my agricultural roots until long after I left Illinois. I studied Public Relations in under grad and went on to work in fundraising and development for various environmental non-profits, including, Scenic Hudson, the job that introduced me to this very special place called the Hudson Valley. In 2016, I left office life with a mission to become a farmer. The journey started as I traveled South America, working on various organic farms as I went. I returned to NY for a season at a farm in Northern Dutchess County and then last year, spent the season learning alongside my now fellow partners (Sam and Anthony) at Glynwood Center in Cold Spring, NY. Running parallel to my love of farming is my passion for social justice. I see farming as my platform to make an impact. I hope to form new roads and relationships during our time at Second Wind to feed and and support more folks impacted by food apartheid and injustice. I will continuously be holding space for conversations and actions that work toward important reparations. I am personally so grateful for the time and patience Lydia and Meghs have shared with us this winter. We’ve been learning about our members and how special this farm and its soil are. I’m so happy to be here doing this work -farming is truly a labor of love and I personally feel you can taste that in our veggies! Cheers to our 2019 season!
Anthony (back left): Hey everyone! This will be my fourth year farming and my fifth farm that I’ve worked at. I didn’t always want to be a farmer. In college I studied physics and math. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do after college, but the most interesting possibilities seemed to require a graduate degree in physics. So I applied for graduate school, got in, and worked toward a PhD in physics at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. After my first year, I was looking for a summer job to pay my rent. My mom was working on a farm near our house on Cape Cod and she suggested I apply to work as a farm hand. After a year of being mostly indoors studying, working outside during the summer sounded really nice. That was the beginning of my interest in farming. I worked for 3 or so months until school started up in the fall and I couldn’t stop thinking about farming. I realized how much I appreciate physical labor and working outside. I went back to school for another semester before deciding that I wanted to quit graduate school. My research professor and I came to an agreement that if I worked through the next summer, I could earn my masters degree. I left graduate school in August 2016 with a MS in physics, but have been farming ever since. My goal is to eventually own a farm and grow diversified veggies. I’m hopeful for a good season and excited to meet you all!
Sam (right): Hi all-I met a few of you at this year’s final pickups, but I’m looking forward to getting to know you all next year! I was born in New Orleans, LA but my parents moved us up to NYC just a year after, so my formative years were spent taking the subway back and forth between schools in Manhattan and my parents’ home in the Bronx. I went to college in the mountains of northwest MA where I graduated with a degree in English, but with more of an interest in applying myself in whatever way I could to the problem of climate change. This led me to work at a big environmental nonprofit in DC, but while there I felt almost as disconnected from real work and change as I did in college.
Through reading the works of people like Wendell Berry and Michael Pollan I became more and more certain that I should get to the root of things – land stewardship, education about and production of healthy real food, involvement in small economies – which pointed me towards working on small farms. And so I found myself commuting against the flow of traffic an hour outside of the nation’s capital to a startup vegetable farm in Maryland where I cut my teeth on the work, trials, and rewards of organic vegetable growing. The following year I moved back up to NY to be closer to my family, and was lucky enough to land an apprenticeship at Glynwood Farm in Cold Spring, where I am now finishing up my second year, this year as a crew leader.
Some things I’ve come to believe about farming are that it begins and ends with the health of the soil, and that a surprising amount of food can be produced on not very much land when managed with economy and wisdom. So stepping into the management of Second Wind made a lot of sense to me. I’m thrilled to continue working with my friends Leslie and Anthony, and to learn from the folks at Four Winds.
Hi there! I am Lydia Nebel, Second Wind CSA owner and farmer. I lease about 1.5 acres of land at Four Winds Farm, and the CSA serves multiple families through 60 shares. Second Wind’s small-scale, no-till, certified organic methods provide great produce–contributing to the health of your family, the land, community development, and the local economy! And you are a part of this effort!
I am looking forward to getting to know all of you next year and want to give some introductory info to get us started:
I was born and raised in small-town, southwest Missouri, where I first learned a love of food production from my grandfather, a hobby farmer, and my mother, with her natural green thumb.After graduating from university, I moved to Kansas City, Missouri and began working at a certified organic, diversified vegetable, urban farm. Since then, I’ve worked on several small-scale farms and in farm/food education. I moved to New York City to be near family and after a year there, came to the Hudson Valley to gain more production training. As an added benefit I get to breathe the fresh air and work in sight of the amazing Shawangunk ridge.
I began farming as a means of avoiding labor exploitation in food production and believe, more than ever, in the need for locally-responsible, globally-aware food economies.I am so thankful to have had a year training in the Four Winds no-till methods before joining the Second Wind lineage. Thank you to all the members who stuck with me through a challenging first season!
Please be in touch as the season begins and tell me some about yourselves.
This year, Meghan will join the Second Wind CSA family after a year of working with Four Winds:
“Some wise person once said to me, ‘do what makes you happy, not what the world
needs;’ lucky for me, what makes me happy is exactly what the world needs. My name is Meghan Wikberg and I’m originally from Chicago, IL, but moved to NY in April from Colorado where I had been living for the past five years. My path to farming began roughly 7 years ago when I worked on a small farm in Elburn, IL. Although I quickly fell in love with farming, I decided to move to Colorado to obtain a degree in soil science. I was beginning a research career in soil carbon sequestration as a tool for mitigating climate change, but it didn’t take long to realize I preferred working with the land rather than in the lab. I missed the physical and mental challenge of farming; and, most importantly, I missed the connection made with my community.
So I made a decision to be the farmer that implements the best farming practices rather than a person researching the best farming practices. This is how I ended up on a small-scale, no-till farm in the Hudson Valley. As you may know, this region is known for their farming practices, and the model implemented here at Second Wind CSA is at the forefront of modern agriculture. A small, local farm, which implements sustainable management practices is the answer to many of our health, cultural and environmental issues. If you want quality food, which improves the environment and offsets climate change then you’re supporting the right farm. I couldn’t be happier or more proud to
grow quality food for you. Thank you for the opportunity.”
Allison Patrick: I am originally from a small farming community in southwestern Pennsylvania. As a kid, I got to eat fresh veggies from my parents’ garden, can tomatoes with my mom, and forage for berries and mushrooms with my dad. I loved being outdoors at all times and wanted that to a part of my future career, so I went on to study Environmental Science at Allegheny College. It was there that I decided small-scale, organic vegetable farming was my calling! I spent my time in school working, researching, and starting educational programs on CSA farms in western PA and loved every minute of it. After school, I spent years living and working in New York City, enjoying my time as an instructor in the Children’s Garden at the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens. I spent the 2013 season assistant managing at a farm in the Hudson Valley before moving to Gardiner and taking over Second Wind in 2014 through 2016.
Bryn Roshong: I’m originally from northern NJ, where there really isn’t much open space, much less farmland to speak of! My time at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY opened my eyes to the possibility of farming, since the farming community there is so robust. After Wes and I worked for a few years as union organizers, we ended up taking a break and trying out farming. We started out in Putnam County, then traveled across the country to farm in New Mexico. We loved spending our days working in the fields so much that we came home and worked a season under Jay at Four Winds Farm. I love living close to the land and serving a community of local-minded families. We’ve made a lot of farmer friends in the Hudson Valley, and I’m keenly aware of what a special place this is. Aside from farming, I’ve also enjoyed working making whiskey at our local distillery, Tuthilltown Spirits, serving visitors wine in the tasting room at Whitecliff Winery, and being the HV regional director at Winter Sun Farms, the local winter veggie share. I love hiking with friends in the Shawangunks, cooking delicious meals and preserving the wonderful veggies that we grow.
Wes Hannah: I grew up in Connecticut, spending as much time outside as possible. Like Bryn, I studied at Cornell and then spent a few years working in different parts of the Northeast. We landed in the Hudson Valley years ago and have fallen in love with the area. Aside from farming itself, my personal interest is in soil science – I love learning about the intricate chemistry and biological ecosystem of the land that we care for. Aside from farming, I work as an organizer with the National Young Farmers Coalition, a grassroots network of young and beginning farmers from across the country.