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The Next Act

I really appreciate the bumper sticker that says”Know Your Farmer”.  That statement means a lot to me because  I love the idea that our customers have had the opportunity to get to know who we are,what we are trying to accomplish and most importantly, have a stronger sense of how your food is grown.  As many of you already know, Star Light was largely Ty’s idea.  She lived big and thought big.  Without her vision,  I doubt that Star Light would have even started.  That was 23 years ago.  23 years?!? Almost impossible to get my mind around that much time.  That is 5 years before we even had grandchildren and they seem like they have been around forever.   I am not going to spend a lot of time telling you about the hard times, the good times.  Not that they aren’t good stories,(they are)but rather want to leave you with three important thoughts.  First, as of this past Wednesday, Joel and Jenn own the farm.  A breath taking change for both of us.  And this was an arrangement carefully crafted and executed over a few years.  It wasn’t easy for them to think of buying Star Light and it also wasn’t that easy for me to give up my identity as a farmer and give up my hold on the ownership.  But it was the right decision. Second, farming was one of the best decisions I will ever make in my lifetime.  Every single step of the way was blooming with challenges and rewards.  My skills as a problem solver have been refined over these few decades.  And physically , farming has helped me in all ways.  This is good work, even exceptional work.  I faced every day with gratitude that I could make my living by growing and harvesting and selling wonderful food.  Thirdly, so happily, I can promise you that I have left the farm with the best of all possible people in the world-Joel and Jen.  Creative, hardworking, empathetic, great growers and( hey why not say i)t-a good looking couple.  I’ll probably get in trouble for that.  My hope of leaving the farm with the best people as possible has been fulfilled.  Those of you going to the market-I will still be around.  But now I will be working for J and J.  

Thank you, one and all.  What a great ride its been. 

16 thoughts on “The Next Act

  1. I’m so moved by your letter. Making Jen and Joel the owners of Starlight Gardens was a blessing for you all…a further progression into wonder and joy on the journey that you three are taking. I feel that Ty is smiling down at you!

  2. Congratulations to all three of you!

  3. Congratulations to all of you! A big step, a logical step and may Starlight Gardens continue for over 23 more years.

  4. It has been so wonderful ‘growing’ with you through the Madison Friday market, and most recently, through the wintertime Friday pickup at the farm. The news of the baton being passed to Jenn & Joel, wonderful people, puts a big smile on my face. Wishing you all the good that life can bring!

  5. Congratulations to all! This is a big moment for all of you!

  6. Congratulations to all three of you. We are so fortunate to have you in our community. Your passion for organic growing and tremendous efforts are deeply appreciated!

  7. Congratulations to Jen and Joel for this wonderful new step!! Thank you to all of you for bringing such delicious food to our farmers’ market, and for being yourselves!

  8. Great picture and message. Wishing everyone the best as David passes the baton to Jen and Joel. Karen and I are blessed to know you. Best wishes and Happy Growing.

    1. Congratulations to all! So thrilled to hear Starlight will carry on with Joel & Jen’s commitment & energy! Thank you David for many, many wonderful years of dedication & love of farming!

  9. Thank you, David, for your life and legacy, for all you have done, all you continue to do, and all you are. My own roots are embedded in the rich soil of Iowa, where my grandparents either farmed or grew mega gardens. Yes, I was nurtured on fresh veggies–more corn than anyone could possibly digest. And no, that corn was not used to fuel the insatiable appetite of cars and trucks. Carry on, Jenn and John, and David, I look forward to seeing you at this summer’s farmers’ markets. Love and gratitude–

  10. Congratulations to all of you lovely humans! So excited for this next step for all of you.

  11. Congratulations. So happy for all of you.

  12. Congratulations to all three of you.

  13. David, you have earned a bit of a break. J and J are a fabulous couple and I’m certain that they will continue your legacy and your vision.

  14. Thank you so much for the history and feelings that you expressed. I’m new and don’t know any of you…

  15. Congratulations, Jen and Joel!
    Thank you, David, for your generosity, wisdom and caring and courageous heart.

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