Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Alberta Open Farm Days: Wooden Shoes Dairy

Roel Bangma, from Wooden Shoes Dairy in Peers, Alberta
Roel Bangma, who runs the farm along with his wife and kids, has a lot of passion for what he does.  I could easily tell that his cows were fond of him, wagging their tails when he passed by, and nuzzling for a pet when given the opportunity. 

The cows were comfortable, laying on water beds covered in hay inside of the barn.  They voluntarily walk up to the milker when they feel ready to be milked, and the milker records vital information that Roel needs to know about his cattle. 
While I was there, I had a unique opportunity that neither Roel nor I were expecting at that exact moment. 
A 2 day old calf. 
A few minutes after we visited the calf's, we walked back over to the main area where saw a calf being born.  Roel wasn't expecting it to happen at that moment, so he quickly tended to the baby calf, barely skipping a beat in our interview. When I came back to visit the farm a few weeks later, Roel led me to the baby calfs and pointed out the now 6 week old Angus calf that I had watched come into this world. 
The baby calf I witnessed being born.
In the calf's area, they are separated by age, in groups of 5.  As you walk through the barn, you see calves as young as 1-2 days old, all the way to 6+ weeks, where they are beginning to be weaned from milk.  We walked through the entire barn on a Facebook Live Tour, which you can watch HERE
Wooden Shoes Dairy will be inviting the public to their farm on Saturday, August 19th for Alberta Open Farm Days, a weekend aimed at bringing Albertians together to learn a bit about how food gets from the farm, to your table.
Over 90 farms across Alberta will be participating, and will open their farms to the public for a weekend of learning, experiencing, and tasting.  I've partnered with Yellowhead County and Community Futures West Yellowhead to share the stores of 4 local farmers in our region. 
If you'd like to participate, you can plan your route online, or stop in at:  
Yellowhead County:
2716 - 1st Avenue, Edson, Alberta
 53404 Rge Rd 92A, Wildwood, AB

Community Futures West Yellowhead:
221 Pembina Avenue, Hinton, Alberta

This post was sponsored by Alberta Open Farm Days.  I received monetary compensation in exchange for this post. As always, all thoughts and options are my 100% my own. 

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