Volunteer Appreciation at Hilltop

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Photo by Caitlyn Fenof

Joan and Tom Heffernan pose with a framed photo of Hilltop Farms’ big dairy barn, a token ot their selection as Volunteers of the Year for 2018.

Torrential rain was not an auspicious start to Saturday, August 4, but the afternoon turned lovely for the Volunteer Appreciation Picnic hosted by The Friends of the Farm at Hilltop. Joan and Tom Heffernan of Suffield were honored as FOFAH’s 2018 “Volunteers of the Year.”

Joan is an amazing gardener! She takes care of the landscaping around the two historic farmhouses and has been a big help with the butterfly, hummingbird, and pollinator gardens. Joan and husband Tom have also taken on creation of the new “corn crib” garden on the east side of the farmstead. Last, but not least, Joan is quick to share the beautiful nature photos she takes around the farm and the open space.

Tom has been a wonderful addition to Hilltop’s facilities and grounds workgroup. Besides mowing, weed whacking and other gardening, he notices things around the property that are worn or damaged, and is quick to fix them. Tom also installed 200 feet of gutters on the chicken coop to support a Suffield Academy class project of rainwater reclamation for the new orchard.

About 40 people attended the volunteer picnic that Saturday. We tested out a big lobster cooker that had been donated by Astrid Hanzalek, a friend of the farm, and “hog father” Ron Fenoff brought over a huge BBQ smoker and cooked a couple of small pigs for the event. Savory potluck side dishes and desserts rounded out the meal, and the day ended with a beautiful rainbow!

The Friends of the Farm at Hilltop are very grateful to all our volunteers for the work they do maintaining the property and supporting programs and events at Hilltop.

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