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children of the corn

No, this story’s not about the 1970’s scary movie with the same name. It’s about something a whole lot more fun than that…

Our 2nd annual Homestead Festival begins a week from today. Instead of waking up to a backfield full of hay bales that we cut and bailed this week, Indy and I will look out the window and see an enormous music stage, dozens and dozens of tents, thousands of chairs, food trucks, vendors, and hundreds of cars beginning to pull in to the backfield, excited to be part of the big weekend.

I thought it would be fun to share a few of my favorite things about this year’s festival in a series of blog posts as we start counting down the days until the festival.

A few weeks ago I shared that country singer Collin Raye is going to be closing out the weekend and what a ‘full circle’ moment it is for me personally to have him come perform my song “Someone You Used To Know” here at the farm. Although that’s a moment that is going to be hard to beat, there are lots of other things happening this year that I’m excited about too.

The first of my favorite things about this year’s festival is in the Lil’ Homesteaders area behind the schoolhouse. Over the last couple of months, we’ve been building a big corn pit specifically for the children who come to the festival (and it’s almost complete).

Last Fall, our kiddos from the school got to play in a corn pit at a pumpkin-patch farm when they went on a field trip and they came home and told us all about it. And so, we thought it would be fun to build one here for all the Lil’ Homesteaders who’ll be at the festival who'll get to take off their shoes, jump around, and play in it.

After Dalton sketched up the building, we were blessed to have some folks come along side us to help keep the costs down to make it happen. And over the last few weeks, little by little, it’s come together.

Yesterday afternoon, while I was cutting hay in the back field and the guys were getting ready to put tin on the roof on the new corn pit, a big truck from Hillsboro Feeds in Alabama, showed up. The kids from school heard it and came running out of the schoolhouse to watch tons of corn being poured in the main room. The truck was barely pulling away and they were already inside trying it out…

If you kids have never played in a corn pit, they’re not only great fun, they’re safe, and something that your children will be talking about for a long time after. It’s going to be a great addition to the Lil Homesteader area this year, where we also have a big ‘barn bouncy house,’ hay rides, lots of animals (including 14 baby piglets), and of course our one-room schoolhouse and playground will open for people to take tours and get to experience. It’s also the spot where another big surprise is going to take place, but I’m gonna wait and share that story in a separate ‘a few of my favorite things about the festival’ post in the coming days.

I know Indiana’s excited about having the corn pit here at the farm too. She’s excited for all the kids to come and play in it next weekend, but also because she knows that when the festival’s over and it’s just sitting here waiting for Homestead Festival #3 to get here next June, she and I are gonna spend a lot of Papa/daughter time jumping and playing in it together.

If you haven’t got your tickets to the festival yet, you can still purchase passes at There you can learn about all the speakers, music, demonstrations, and more that will be going on. It’s going to be an incredible weekend of not just learning how to grow your own food, but how to grow a life filled with meaning and purpose.

Hope to see you there, …I mean here.

- rory



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