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Farm Camp Teaches Life Lessons

The wide-open spaces of a farm provide the ultimate playground for kids, and one Vermont dairy lets non-farm kids in on the fun, while also teaching them about working hard and caring for animals.

“Life on the Farm,” a summer camp at Fairmont Farm in East Montpelier, gives kids age six through 12 the chance to help out on a dairy for a week.

“We have fun with the cows and we’re learning a lot, so it’s like school but we’re having fun,” said 10-year-old camper Ava. “I like doing chores and cleaning up after the cows. I love my calf, she’s really fun to play with, and her name is Terry.”

Campers start their morning by feeding and caring for the younger cows.

Each camper is responsible for caring for his or her own calf, which allows the kids to form a trusting and safe relationship with the animal. At the end of the week, the kids demonstrate their leadership skills and show their parents everything they learned, as well as host a tour of the farm.

The campers form a close bond with their calves while they make sure they have plenty to eat, drink and even get enough social time!

Every day at the farm, the kids wash their calves and brush their coats.

Fairmont Farm is owned by three families, and everyone from grandparents to cousins help teach the campers. The family shows the kids how to milk the cows using modern milking equipment—and how to make butter from heavy cream.

Although the camp is for kids ages six through 12, one of the youngest members of the farm family, 11-month-old Carson Ayer (left), stopped by to see the cows with his pal. Fairmont Farm always welcomes visitors!

Life on the Farm camp is in its third year and has nearly doubled in size since it was started. This year, they will have 25 kids per week, in two separate sessions, the first in July and the second in August.

This story was brought to you by our friends at Must Be The Milk, the New England Dairy Promotion Board.