Farm Olympics at Cove Creek Farm June 10 in Monteagle
June 10 will be an exciting day to get a sneak peak at Cove Creek Farm’s new agri-tourism venue (think giant indoor and outdoor playground with an agriculture education focus) and to witness — perhaps even participate in — the area’s first ever Farm Olympics hosted by the Southeast TN Young Farmers Coalition (SeTNYF). The event will be from 2–9 p.m.
Cove Creek Farm, managed by Matt and Laureen Sparacio has been expanding from growing and offering grassfed beef and pastured poultry and pork to also providing a place where people can come to have some fun, learn about regenerative agriculture, and connect with area farmers and the land. This agri-tourism venue, located across from Clifftops, and behind Dollar General, in Monteagle, will be opening soon to host school field trips and weekend activities. Cove Creek is committed to participating in and promoting agriculture as a way to build local communities and heal the planet. Part of this mission has led Matt to serve as vice president for SeTNYF, who works to support young and aspiring farmers through community-building, resource and knowledge sharing, and advocacy.
“Young farmers represent the future of our food supply, economy, and character of our rural communities. They also largely represent regenerative agriculture which builds soil, combats climate change, and promotes food justice. Why do young farmers need support? Have you tried to buy land lately? Have you ever tried to make money selling produce? There are huge financial and social barriers that keep young people from going into farming. The number one barrier is access to affordable and secure land. Older farmers (the average age in the US is 59.7) are leaving farming and younger farmers cannot afford to come in. Without addressing this, there will be a major hole in our rural economies, landscapes, communities and food supply,” said Jess Wilson, president of SeTNYF.
SeTNYF has been working since 2019 to address these issues and is excited to host the Farm Olympics as a way to raise awareness, celebrate and build community, and raise money for the cause. Attendees of the event may participate in, or simply watch, a variety of farm-related sporting events, such as speed transplanting, a two person temporary fence moving race, a plant identification knowledge test, and a pie competition. There will also be kids events and a multi-generational egg toss. After the “Olympic games” there will be live music, a silent auction fundraiser featuring amazing products from area farms and restaurants, a pig Roast picnic featuring Cove Creek Pork, and a bonfire.
Tickets are $20 for adults and $5 for children available at https://southeasttennesseeyoungfarmers.com/events;.
Made possible with support from American Farmland Trust, Citizens Tri-County Bank, Hungry for Community (a project of the Grundy Area Arts Council), Cove Creek Farm, Patagonia Nashville, the South Cumberland Regional Land Trust and Jump Off Community Land Trust, High Garden Tea, Rooted Here, Double A Farm, Stewards Unlimited, Sequatchie Cove Farm, Sequatchie Cove Creamery, the Cumberland Folk School, Neidlov’s, Art of Wellness, Feathers and Fruit, Lodge Cast Iron, Lunch, Mary Barnett, Summer Fields, the Marugg Company, and anonymous friends.