Ross Farm Newsletter 2018, Edition 8
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Springing Into Spring

Boudinot’s Garden had a banner year in 2017. Beds were raised and filled with fresh topsoil and compost. A new composting system was built by an aspiring Eagle Scout candidate and a drip irrigation system on timers was installed in each of the growing beds. The garden responded beautifully to the love and attention last year by providing 2,112 pounds of fresh produce.

This year the garden leadership will kick off the growing season by raising the sides of the historic bed which will provide a place to grow herbs, perennials, and historic plants as well as provide a perch for weary gardeners. In addition to that effort, the beds will be prepped for late winter/early spring planting of various frost hardy vegetables such as Snow Peas. Shortly thereafter an Eagle Scout candidate will be building new vertical supports for the beds which will allow us to maximize the horizontal growing space. These supports were designed for beauty as well as function so we are looking forward to their visual interest in such a utilitarian space.

Photo by Jan Williams
Round about April, as in previous years, seedlings will be grown for our garden by the Sunday school children of the area churches that are our growing partners: St Marks of Basking Ridge, St Bernards and St John on the Mountain of Bernardsville. We thank them for all of their efforts and look forward to seeing their shining faces when they plant their seedlings in May. 

Ross Farm
2018 Music Series Springs Forth!

Everything comes back to life in the spring at the Ross Farm, and our music season is no exception! We’re happy to share the news of our first shows, and look forward to announcing the other events we currently have up our sleeves.

Mike Mains kicks off our fourth season of live music at the Ross Farm on Sunday, April 22. Mike wowed the Ross Farm crowd last summer when he opened for JD Eicher on the Tack House patio so we are thrilled to welcome him back for a headlining set.
Opening the show for Mike is a Ross Farm newcomer, Annalise Emerick. Annalise is a Nashville singer-songwriter who has toured extensively through the United States and is sure to delight our music lovers!
His date coincides beautifully with Earth Day, so Boudinot’s Garden crew is working on some ways to honor the day that is set aside to honor the Earth. The gates will open at 2:30 p.m., and we’re hoping guests will come early to stroll the garden and grounds. Mike will begin at 3 p.m. Some light refreshments will be available, but guests are welcome to bring a picnic or snacks as well.

Weather permitting, this show will be on patio, so blankets or lawn chairs are also suggested. If it’s chilly or damp, we’ll set up inside the cozy old Barn and offer plenty of seating. Admission is a suggested donation of $20 for adults and $5 for students. Guests are encouraged to pre-register at so we can accommodate everyone.  If rain forces us inside for any shows, those who pre-register will be given preference in the case of a sellout.  Donations can be made via PayPal when registering on-line or can be made at the door before the show begins.   

Rock the Barn

As our music adventure began with our first Rock the Barn concert in 2015, it’s one of our favorite Ross Farm events! We are proud and excited to welcome back Christian Lopez, an artist who performed in the Barn in our first season of live music.
Photo by Kylie West
Lopez earned some immediate and loyal fans that day, and his Basking Ridge audiences have kept on growing through three more band and solo shows at the Ross Farm over the past three years.
The Christian Lopez Band ended a phenomenal, humid, stormy night of music in a barn with one that had the crowd clapping and cheering and left us wanting more.
He’ll take the stage outside the Barn on Saturday, May 12, and we expect our biggest music crowd yet!  Christian will be playing songs from his new album, “Red Arrow,” as well as older favorites and covers. The gates will open at 6 p.m. and the show will start at 7 p.m.  Minuteman Smokehouse and Grill will be on site selling pulled pork and other treats, so come early to enjoy dinner, friends, family and music! Pre-register and donate in advance, if you wish, at Keep an eye on our website,, or our Facebook page,, for more details on this very special event.

Band of Friends

We initiated our Band of Friends membership last year, offering a season pass where guests are automatically registered and offered early entrance to each of the shows. With a donation of just $100, Band of Friends members do not need to worry about donating for individual concerts, plus they get to show their wonderful support for live music at the Ross Farm. We’ll offer Band of Friends again this year – visit the link here to sign up or get more information.  

Business Sponsors

Another wonderful way to support the 2018 Music Series is by becoming a business sponsor. For the first time, we are offering several levels of support to choose, from $100 Roadies all the way up to $1,000 Platinum sponsors. Any businesses interested in learning more about a sponsorship can contact Nola Hansen at, by phone at 973-650-6458, or by clicking here

Information about all of our concerts can be found on our website at and is also posted on our Facebook page.

Our Volunteers Rock

Volunteering at Ross Farm has become one of our best features, and the opportunities continue to grow. In 2017 we organized our volunteer program into Garden, Music and Youth divisions with most of the local youth volunteers being made up of 10 graders who have service hour requirements to fulfill.  

Our Garden volunteer program reaches over 100 people through email alerts. With volunteer support we grew over 2112 pounds of fresh produce for the Somerset County Food Bank, and local food pantries. Volunteers worked to prepare the planting beds in the spring then went on to plant, nurture, harvest and deliver the produce throughout the summer and fall. These volunteers included the Sunday school programs of several local churches who get us started each in early spring by growing seedlings for the garden, and then bringing their seedlings to the farm with for a planting day in May.

RHS sophomore Aidan Wiehe is fulfilling his sophomore community service at the Ross Farm and was a big help chopping wood from trees that fell in our spring snowstorms! The logs will be used in Boudinot’s Garden as a perimeter around the historical bed.

The Music volunteer program engages local music lovers interested in supporting the music committee. They help with setup and other tasks related to our concert events. We hosted nine concerts in 2017 and with the help of the volunteers we are looking forward to our fourth year of outstanding music in 2018. 

The Youth volunteer program is the structure we use to coordinate with local youths who are mostly working to meet their volunteering/service hour goals for school, community organizations or their places of worship. What makes this approach unique is that Maya Becker, our Teen Volunteer Coordinator, is a high school student who works with our youth volunteers to organize their school/volunteer responsibilities. 

Photo by Ken VanBalen

This past year we had an Eagle Scout candidate create a composting system for the garden as his Eagle Scout award project. The Ross Farm was also enhanced by the efforts of a Girl Scout Bronze award project that beautified various areas of the property while also creating signage for the garden beds. Additionally we benefitted from the efforts made by numerous 10th graders from Ridge High School and students from Bernards High School whose strength and enthusiasm were utilized predominantly in the garden.  

Volunteers are hugely appreciated at the Ross Farm and new faces/friends are always welcome. We would love to hear from rising 10th graders at Ridge who will need service hours for May 2018-April 2019. Many of the hours can be completed in the summer which will minimize impact on school year schedules. Interested individuals for any of the 3 groups; Garden, Music or Youth can reach us at Volunteer@RossFarm.Org.  

Mystery Item

Ladies and Gentlemen. We have left you hanging long enough. The mystery last featured in our newsletter was a specific type of kitchen knife. Drum roll please…the knife is an oyster knife! 
Put your thinking caps back on because here is the next mystery item. Good luck!

Did you know?

The Ross Farm, which is owned by Somerset County, became an official entity noted in the National Register of Historic Places with the US Dept of the Interior on December 12, 2009. The registry status records the property as the Boudinot/Southard Farmstead with its period of historic significance ranging from 1771-1952. 
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