Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Holiday Fun At Christmas On The Hill

Yuletide splendor is glittered throughout the farm this Christmas season. We invite you to make Marini Farm part of your special holiday memories this year.

Stroll through the gallery of beautifully decorated donated trees and wreaths at the Tree Jubilee.  More than 60 uniquely decorated trees and wreaths will be raffled off for the benefit of the Humane Society. This is one of the Humane Society's biggest fundraisers to help defer the increasing costs of their shelter services. Ipswich Humane Group is a non-profit group that assists Ipswich Animal Control to enable a no-kill animal shelter for the Town of Ipswich.  The group is 100% donation funded and 100% unpaid volunteer run.

For 32 years, the organization has been providing veterinary care, housing in their animal shelter, and has operated a successful adoption program which has placed over 1800 dogs and cats in homes throughout the north shore community. The event has free admission and if you want to participate in the raffle, 100% of the proceeds go directly to our four legged friends.

Our tree shop features a selection of more than 2,000 well-groomed pre-cut trees from Canada to choose from, as well fresh holiday greenery. See our blog “The ABCs of Christmas Tree Shopping” for pointers on selecting the perfect tree. If you want to make certain your tree is secure and won’t topple over, check out the Stand Strait tree system. This video has Mike Marini demonstrating how it works.

Our bakery has your favorite Christmas cookies and pastries. Don’t forget to leave with some gingerbread men, holiday scones and cider donuts.

Take a tour of Christmas on the Hill in this new video. There’s way too much to do!

  •  Take a family hayride
  •  Warm up with some hot cider or chowder from the Clam Box
  •  Cruise through the Tree Jubilee and try your luck in the raffle
  •  Take some yuletide photos in front of our giant snowman or in front of one of our festive displays
  •  Enjoy fresh baked Christmas goodies and peer in and see the bakers at work
  •  Shop for ornaments, gifts and greenery to make your home full of Christmas cheer
  •  Have the kids enjoy the Pirate ship and other activities
Our holiday calendar lists all the events happening at the farm this season. The Marini family and staff wish you a merry holiday season and Happy New Year!

Written by Lightning Consulting

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

World Record American PunkinChunkin Cannon in Action at Marini Farm

Pumpkins will be hurling far and high at supersonic speed on October 3rd for the first ever show of the American Punkin Chunker at Marini Farm. The chunker will do a target shooting demonstration and show at the farm located at 259 Linebrook Road in Ipswich, MA. Marini Farm sent a pumpkin to the World Championships in 2013 in Delaware and their pumpkin broke the event world record with a 4,430 foot blast, exceeding over 120 of the best teams from around the U.S. and overseas. Over 30,000 onlookers witnessed the world record chunk and a large group of chunkers put their engineering skills to the test.

In recognition of the world record success, the farm was added to the schedule of six public shows the chunker will be doing this fall. The chunker is a massive 100 foot pneumatic cannon that shoots pumpkins for long distance. The team that runs the cannons represents many areas of technology and scientific disciplines and a team of 25 contribute their technical expertise to making the American team pumpkin chunker a powerful pumpkin shooter capable of breaking records. All of it is done solely by mechanical means without the aid of electricity or explosives. The team’s original goal was to win the world championships, and going forward they will continue to strive to break world records. 

The World Championship PunkinChunkin Association raises funds for the Basset Hound Rescue and the Wounded Warrior Project. The organization has been hosting events since 1986 and was started by Captain Brian Labrie. This fall, the World Famous Punkin Chunkin long distance shooting event, Extreme Punkin’ Chunkin’, will be held in New Hampshire on October 24/25 at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon, NH.  Teams from all across the country will participate in hopes of breaking the world record, and the American Punkin Chunkin team will be there to defend their title. Teams compete in divisions such as air cannon, centrifugal, catapult, human power, trebuchet, theatrical and torsion. The Discovery Channel’s video shows the wide range of competitors at the championship events all lined up to catapult their pumpkins into the record books. 

There is a lot going on at the farm in September and October so add a visit to your fall recreation and take on the challenge of the corn maze, Kernel of Gold…A Pirate’s Adventure, enjoy all the action at the maze park with our giant slide, jumping pillow and inflatables, and visit our new bakery for some fresh cider donuts. It’s not every day you get to watch a pumpkin chunking show, so make sure you visit the farm on October 3rd for some supersonic excitement.

Written by Lightning Consulting


Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Marini's New Farm Kitchen Is Ready To Bake Fresh Every Day

The record snowfall this past winter didn’t interfere with our plans to have our new farm bakery ready for its Grand Opening on June 20, 2015. Windhill Builders managed to stay on schedule with the bakery construction project, battling freezing temperatures and day-to-day winter challenges. All the mixers, ovens, and freezers have arrived, and according to the social media activity, our customers are excited to welcome our new fresh baked products. The cider donut making machine photo posted on Facebook received 4488 views, 330 likes and dozens of comments. As Kelley Jane Kloub posted,” I am simply giddy with anticipation of real bread…oh boy, oh boy!”

Our first major decision on the new bakery was finding a Head Baker to keep the shelves packed with fresh baked grab-and-go products for our customer’s breakfast, lunch and dinner tables. Marini’s strong networking helped get the word out that they would be hiring a full-time Head Baker, so Erin Gardner didn’t waste any time to let Mike and Kim Marini know that the job description fit her perfectly. She wanted an entrepreneurial opportunity which would enable her to be creative and artistic with her baking creations. She also wanted to be close to the customers and see them firsthand enjoying all the new products. The open kitchen structure of the bakery enables customers to peer in the windows where all the mixing and mastering is done.

A coffee bar will add some social fun and convenience to the shopping experience. “Our customers have been asking us for fresh baked products for years, so we can’t wait to let Erin loose in the kitchen, and see all the excitement she generates!”, notes Mike Marini.

Erin took the reins with gusto, and she embraces the love of food and the camaraderie that comes with it. She can’t wait to fill the shelves with fresh muffins, cider donuts, scones, breads, cookies and cupcakes. “Cider donuts are a blast to prepare, and seeing them all sugared up with a warm soft glow, will hopefully make them irresistible to everyone who visits the bakery”, states Erin. She wants the full presentation to be pretty and have strong flavors of just baked surprises. Each baked good is an artistic masterpiece, and each day Erin plans to challenge herself with new creations.

Erin obtained her training at Johnson & Wales Baking and Pastry Arts Program, and has worked in the restaurant industry for many years, most recently at the 62 Restaurant located on the wharf in Salem, MA. She quickly learned she “loved the science and art of baking” and was ready for a long-time career in culinary arts. She has her favorites and fresh cider donuts and artistically decorated/colorful donuts are always on the top of her list.

“Sharing what I love to do with other people is simply a dream job”, Erin explains. “The creation process from kneading the dough, to making it pretty and irresistible, never gets old.”

When you meet Erin you want to put on an apron and join her in the kitchen. She is ready to go, and has her favorite recipes she has collected from years of baking, flagged in a thick notebook. As Erin explains, every ingredient and its measurement impact the quality of the products. The biggest challenge of being a pastry chef is that, unlike other types of chefs, you can't throw things together. “When you're working with baking powder and a formula, you have to be exact, or you won’t get the desired results”, Erin comments.

Kim and Mike Marini can’t wait for the fresh bakery aromas to linger through the farm stand, and they are excited to see all the new bakery shelves packed with scrumptious selections. They are happy to be able to enhance the visitor experience, in a unique country atmosphere with wonderful downhome creations from their new farm kitchen.

Erin enjoys yoga and golf and spending time with her husband and family. Please join us in welcoming Erin to the new Marini Farm Bakery, and don’t hesitate to share ideas for products, as we will constantly be adding new items to the menu. Grab a coffee and a fresh baked scone, and join us for breakfast!

Written by Lightning Consulting

Friday, March 6, 2015

It's a Goat's Life at Marini Farm

We recently asked our Facebook followers what they wanted for topics on our winter blogs and some responded they wanted a story on our goats, so we are happy to share our love for goats in our first blog of 2015. First of all, we love our animals and welcome everyone who visits our farm to spend time visiting with our animals. Goats dominate the animal pen at Marini Farm. We currently have seven Nigerian Dwarf goats, two Boer goats, and two Sicilian donkeys named Macy and Arial.

Boer Goats are imported to the United States through South Africa and are raised for meat. They have distinctive coloring with a light neutral tone body and red head. The Nigerian goat is a miniature dairy goat of West African origin and they were originally called Pygmy's. They love to battle each other, but it is all friendly battles.

Last year we doubled the size of our animal pen and in the future we plan to add a better access pathway from the road as well as a new parking lot close to the pen.

Our goats love socializing with the other animals and dart to the gate when visitors arrive. We currently don’t use them for milk production, but as our farm grows this may change.

Did you know goats have rectangle pupils and have excellent night vision? We found there was a lot about goats we didn’t know about as we were gathering information for this blog. There are even goats that faint when they get excited. Did you know goats have four stomachs so they can eat just about anything? Let us know if you know any interesting goat facts not included here. We hope you are as fascinated with them as we are.

Interesting and fun goat facts:

Goats are a member of the Bovidae family

They are one of the oldest domesticated species

There are over 300 distinct breeds

Female goats are does or nannies and male goats are bucks or billies. Under one year they are bucklings and female babies are doelings.

Goats are able to breed all year long

They are ruminants, which means they have 4 stomachs and can eat almost any diet. Some even love peanut butter.

Their longer guard hairs are used in the textile industry to make cashmere.

Goats typically live for 8-12 years, but some can live up to 20 years.

Goats can have 1-6 kids per litter

There are over 500 million goats in the world

The U.S. has 3 million goats with Texas leading the production.

It is estimated that 72 % of the world’s milk consumption is from goats

Goat milk is naturally homogenized

Goat meat is called chevon or cabrito

Along with the octopus, goat pupils are rectangular and they have great night vision

They are good swimmers

They love socializing with other goats

Goats are one of the first animals to be domesticated as far as 6000 years ago

Goats have no teeth in the upper jaw

They are very athletic and some goat species can jump over 5 feet

Goats are herbivores (plant eaters)

They have no tear ducts

They are good climbers and have great balance which is why you always see them standing on rocks and steep slopes

Race horses are often given a 'goat friend' so they are not lonely in the stall

Goats have 15,000 taste buds, which is 5000-6,000 more than humans

Goat kids stand minutes after birth

Goat horns never stop growing.

Some say goats even discovered coffee in Ethiopia

Goats have natural oils that help repel ticks

Enjoy this hilarious video of funny goats. We look forward to expanding our animal pen, so let us know what additions you would like to see us add to the pen. They love visitors so please come see them when you stop by the farm.

Written by Lightning Consulting