That title’s a tad misleading, the folks at Cricket Creek Farm in Williamstown, Massachusetts, aren’t building a barn, but renovating an existing one — and in the process, seeking to make their young farmstead cheese operation financially and environmentally sustainable. Cricket Creek Farm is the latest to turn to crowd-funding to aid their cause — with just 11 days left in their Kickstarter campaign, they’re over 93% of the way to reaching their goal.
With an ambitious goal of raising $85,000, Cricket Creek has two objectives: to renovate the upstairs of an old barn (the “Stone Barn”) to be used as a community space, and to invest in solar power. The new Stone Barn will be a community event space that can be used by local residents and visitors and be rented out for larger events, which will provide an important addition to their revenue stream. In addition, they are designing a system that will offset about 77% of their electric usage and also provide solar hot water. Solar hot water helps the farm go green while also cutting down on their utility costs.
You can learn more about their plans — and see an eye-opening breakdown of the costs of running a farmstead cheese operation — on their Kickstarter page. Or, watch their video here first:
In the few short years since Topher Sabot and Suzy Konecky have been managing the farm, they have already won two blue ribbons for their Maggies Round and Maggies Reserve at the American Cheese Society competition (2011 and 2012, respectively). A third cheese, Tobasi, is one of my favorite washed-rind cheeses.
Rewards backers can choose include cheese label t-shirts ($40), a limited-edition 1-pound wheel of Maggie’s Round ($75) to monthly cheese deliveries ($350) or a private cheesemaking class for you and 6 friends ($600). (I’m off to launch my own Kickstarter campaign to raise $10,000 for their largest ticket item, a chance to collaborate on a new cheese. Let me know if you’d like to pitch in.)
In all seriousness, hop on over to make a pledge and keep Cricket Creek Farm making great cheese!
photos (c) Cricket Creek Farm