Monday, June 23, 2014

Marini Farm Produce Availability Calendar

Marini Farm grows over 200 acres of fruits and vegetables which are available from May through October. To help you in planning your produce shopping visits to the farm, we have created a seasonal produce calendar. Please be aware that the calendar may vary slightly as growing dates may vary each season depending on the impact of Mother Nature. This season, as an example, our strawberry picking calendar was moved further into June based on the cold spring we experienced. To ensure that the produce you want will be available, don’t hesitate to call ahead to confirm availability. The vegetables are picked daily in the early morning to ensure quality and freshness. 

Marini is always prepared for dramatic changes in weather and incorporates special techniques and utilizes protective coverings to protect the crops from harsh conditions.

“I always need to be ready with a backup plan and can’t fight Mother Nature. It is these challenges that make farming so exciting as no two days and no two circumstances are ever the same”, claims Mike Marini. 

We are picking nine vegetables in June and 22 in July, so please keep our produce calendar nearby so you don’t miss out on your favorite vegetables.

Prepared by Lightning Consulting

Monday, June 9, 2014

Spookley Will Bring A World Of Smiles To The Marini Farm Corn Maze

The 2014 Marini Farm Corn Maze plans are in place and there is a lot of positive energy around this year’s theme. Spookley the Square Pumpkin has had a presence at the corn maze in the last few years. A large inflatable Spookley has greeted maze visitors as they entered the maze park, and this year Spookley will have the largest presence and will get the most attention ever as the 8 acre corn maze design. In 2013, Marini organized an anti-bullying concert event to focus attention on bullying prevention and awareness, and this focus will continue in 2014 with the daily awareness and reinforcement on the importance of accepting everyone, whether they are square or round.

The book The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin, by Joe Troiano, is the story about a very special little pumpkin who teaches children that you can't judge a book, or a pumpkin, by its cover, and how being different is okay and how we shouldn’t tease others. Spookley invites you to “Dare to Be Square” and embrace the beauty of being different! The book shows how sometimes it is better to be square. Spookley saved the day and all the other pumpkins from tumbling into the river during a mighty storm by wedging between the hole in the fence and stopping all the pumpkins from the scary fast moving river.

Marini wants everyone who visits the maze to feel Spookley’s presence and join in and smile along with him as people help each other navigate through the maze and participate in all the activities at the maze park. At the end of the book, it shows the farmer carrying Spookley to his house and placing Spookley on the porch, lit up with a candle for all to see. Spookley went from the bullied victim to the hero in a matter of seconds, and he never hesitated to come to the rescue and save all those who tormented him because he was square. Being different can make a difference and save lives!

The key messages the book presents are:

• Being different is OK

• How differences can become strengths when you least expect it

• How if everyone helps each other, lives can be saved and things will be better

• You can’t judge a book by its cover

• Treating others unfairly can hurt you in the end

• Not everyone is perfect, and not all pumpkins are round

• Friends can help you when you need them most

• It’s not right to hurt others feelings

• There are friends out there for everyone

• If you make others sad, you will experience many sad days yourself

• It is not acceptable to exclude people from the group

• Everyone is special regardless of how they look

• We can all unite against bullying and help one another when it matters most

• Being a bully is not OK!

The book is available on DVD, paperback and as an app for the iPad/iPhone, Android, and Nook platforms.

For several years Spookley has been the official spokes-pumpkin for National Bullying Prevention Month, sponsored by the Minneapolis-based family support organization PACER (Parent Advocacy Coalition for Educational Rights).

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Department of Education (ED), and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) partnered with bullying experts to develop a uniform definition of bullying for research and surveillance.

In January 2014, CDC and ED released the definition listed below:

Bullying is any unwanted aggressive behavior(s) by another youth or group of youths who are not siblings or current dating partners that involves an observed or perceived power imbalance and is repeated multiple times or is highly likely to be repeated. Bullying may inflict harm or distress on the targeted youth including physical, psychological, social, or educational harm.

The statistics as stated on continue to rise and present alarming data.

Bullying statistics:

• About 42 percent of kids have been bullied online

• About 35 percent of kids have been threatened online

• About 58 percent of kids and teens have reported that something mean has been said about them or to them online

• Other bullying statistics show that about 77 percent of students have admitted to being the victim of one type of bullying or another

• The American Justice Department bullying statistics show that one out of every 4 kids will be bullied sometime throughout their adolescence

• Well over half of young people do not tell their parents when cyber bullying occurs

The title of the 2014 corn maze is “Spookley brings a world of smiles.” “We expect Spookley to be a hit at Marini Farm and loved by all”, says Mike Marini. We want maze visitors to leave with smiles on their faces and remember one strong message, “It’s hip to be square.”  

Prepared by Lightning Consulting