We want to take this time to thank everyone who participated in our naming campaign. We had over 100 entries in the Name Our Farm Contest. Believe it or not, it was a daunting task. The entries were witty, thoughtful, serious, cosmic, insanely funny and most of all, showed the love and compassion you all have for us. We have spent days and hours mulling over names, rhymes, synonyms, even using the farmer’s almanac to find true meanings of some of the names. And through sips of wine, food and snacks; during the final witching hour we succeeded.
Our new farming name...drum roll please!! Is… Rise & Root Farm!!!
You all must be wondering how we came up with that name and what was the inspiration. Well no one had it exactly, but the final spark that made it clear for us came from Ehle Shachter; her suggestion was Rooted Green Farm. So Ehle, because of your inspiration, we’re giving you honorable mention. Congratulations!
Now, lets give you some insight into why the name Rise & Root Farm resonated so much with us. Here are our personal reflections on our name:
It reminds me of the Maya Angelou poem "Still I Rise".
The Rise for me is that you can hold us down but “Still We Rise”, that all the heartaches and battles we have faced “Still We Rise”, We Rise to be Great, We Rise to be the best people and farmers we can be, We Rise because with pride we are standing on the shoulders of our ancestors.
Our Roots tie me to my family, and my family without a name. The long arduous journey they had to endure and the sacrifices they made reminds me to never give up, be always rooted in the land, in community and in family.
To me it's about being pulled in two different directions - not something we usually think about in a positive way, but this is nothing but positive!
Rise and reach for the stars! Throw off everything that's weighing you down - oppression, self-doubt, other people's expectations or suppositions, and on. Rise and reclaim your power! Rise, dream, grow, and inhabit the greatness that is you, I and we together.
Root. Dig deep. Find your core; know your strength, your center. Honor the people who came before us. Dig down and call on their strength. The strength of our past. The strength of challenges overcome. And our connection to the earth, all people, all struggles, everyone's potential power.
Rise & Root Farm - it's about stretching to be our best selves. To rise without rooting is to drift away. To root without rising is to never see the sun.
To farm is to struggle against all odds... to toil the weather, the winter, the rocks in your fields. To farm is to challenge stereotypes, corporate America, racism, and economies that cannot afford to pay farmers a living wage or nourish its children.
To farm is to RISE up against the challenge, to propel forwards, to laugh, to harvest and sweat with passion and dedication. To farm is to feed our community.
To farm is to dig deep. To connect with our ancestors, our history, the thousands of years before us and learn from others mistakes. To farm is to ROOT oneself and others, to stay grounded against all odds, connected to family and friends through the long days and sore muscles.
Collectively, we Rise & Root. We farm.
Rise and root are both calls to action, and both are necessary to do the work we want to do. Rise up! Be our best selves, despite our self-doubts and fears. Rise with the support of our loved ones; despite those who want us to fail. Rise to action, to change.
Rising without roots means floating up like a balloon, so high until you pop. We need our families, communities, and histories to help us by sending out a strong interconnected web of roots.
We could not be without those who came before us to pave the way, to fight for our right to be who we are.
Through our farm journey, we plan to rise AND to root. To thrive as a farm by connecting with our communities and by learning about our histories and people.
Rise & Root for me is about memory, forgiveness, rebirth and the ultimate liberation for all. For all that we are born from, that we gain nourishment from, that we garner strength from is but one tangled mass of collective histories forever woven together and witnessed by the land beneath our feet. No matter how kind our hearts or how lost our hearts, no matter the color of our skin, no matter our gender identity, no matter our beliefs in God or Science, no matter our roles as oppressed and oppressor our liberation is bound together.
To rise we must be willing to remember our collective history, to own that history as "ours" verses Irish-American, African-American, Asian-American, Latin-American, Women's History. We must be willing to forgive others as well as ourselves. Only then will we be able to see what we can learn, what we can compost from the past and apply toward healing the present. And only then will we be able to realize "liberty and freedom for all.”
What does Rise & Root mean to me? I feel you all have already said it all so perfectly...but I will say this. I am so filled with love and gratitude and I couldn't be more humbled and honored to not only have the five of you as partners but as close friends. I don't know how I can be so lucky to have you in my life...as near and dear as you all are...I shake my head in disbelief sometimes. I was lost in life for so long, and all of you feel like home. Our community and friends and work, all feel like home to me. I have Rooted because of you, and I Rise because of you. I hope to do the same for all of you and others.
We hope that you will join us in this call to action. Choosing our name is a monumental step in our farm. We will heed its message to Rise & Root as we continue on our farm journey. Please help us however you are able - spread the word and/or donate to our Indiegogo campaign to enable us to grow strong roots in our first year.