Roleplaying as a Farmer

Yale Farm canopy

I never thought that my first time farming would be on an acre of land on Yale’s campus. On a random afternoon, I was walking down Prospect St and saw a large white plastic tent in the distance. After walking towards the tent, I found a sign for Yale Farm and then found the work hours online showing Friday 2-4PM. The following Friday, I brought my friends the following Friday to participate in the work day. After getting to the farm, I was surprised by how many volunteers and staff members from the Yale Sustainable Food Program there were. We asked for tasks to work on at the farm and since it wasn’t harvesting or planting season, we were tasked with weeding the carrot field.

Pulling up weeds in carrot field
Hard at work rolling in dirt

The particular Friday we showed up for was also the day of a book launch event for Yale Professor Hiʻile Hobart’s new book Cooling the Tropics: Ice, Indigeneity, and Hawaiian Refreshment, so the workday ended exactly at 4:30 PM in time for a talk and a hula performance by Yale students.

Outdoor pavilion of Yale Farm
Cute outdoor pavilion with a temporary stage and a woodfired pizza oven

After the talk, there was pizza from the oven made by the program workers. Pizza is typically served after every work day at 5 PM, but because of the event, the schedule was shifted a bit more. After getting the pizza, I walked around the farm, looking at the different produce grown on the farm.

So much basil

Provoking a chicken
Chickens hehe

Overall, the farm is a great place to volunteer time as the produce is donated to local food banks to increase organic produce consumption in low income communities. Additionally, the farm community is really expansive and welcoming, so it’s also a great place to meet people with similar interests.