Published Oct 9, 2014

More Than 100 Gift Memberships

By Teresa Opheim
Rick Hartmann

Rick Hartmann of Small Potatoes Farm, who, with his wife, Stacy, has donated gift membership to Practical Farmers this year

More than 50 members contributed money for gift memberships to Practical Farmers the fiscal year that just ended. Those contributions will allow us to give more than 100 members a chance to try us out for the next year.

What a wonderful outpouring of support for expanding our community of those working for stewardship and vibrant farms and communities. Many members contributed memberships for neighbors and friends; others asked Practical Farmers to choose recipients. Many veteran, refugee and beginning farmers will get to try out Practical Farmers as a result of their largess.

Why did all of these members respond? One of the contributors, Rick Hartmann, will respond:

“I wanted to share a gifting strategy that we implemented at our household last year. We decided, and then selected, three persons we felt that would benefit from PFI memberships. We signed them up on-line through the PFI website, then sent them a note to expect contact from PFI.

“Why did we do it? For several reasons.

“First, we felt the benefits we have received from PFI over the last decade have far exceeded the cost to us. In a sense, we felt a little beholden to the organization.

“Second, we are frugal. We spend money, sure. In fact we really don’t mind it, but there are so few good things to spend it on. There are so few goods or services that have any real value for their cost, we usually just go without. We think PFI uses money efficiently and delivers real value for our hard-earned money.

“Finally, by giving memberships to PFI, we not only benefit PFI with a lasting and likely reoccurring gift, we also benefit the recipient of the membership. In this way we can strengthen our community and local network of like-minded farmer and eaters.

“I encourage you all to thoughtfully craft a small list of beginning farmers, agitated-and-looking-for-answer farmers, people who appreciate good food, someone who has done you a good turn, the neighbor who shut up your chickens while you were on vacation, …. Then get on line and sign a couple of them up for PFI.

“It might be the best opportunity to use your money effectively that comes along for awhile.”

Thank you, Rick and Stacy, and all of those who responded with gift memberships:

Jane Anderson, Nadine Bruns, Sarah Carlson, Charlotte Cleavenger, Erik Cleveland, Ann Cromwell, Jim Dillavou, Wade Dooley, Margaret Dunn Chalmas, Kathy Eastman, Kathy and Herb Eckhouse, Kate Edwards, Tom and Irene Frantzen,Jim French, Michael Gallagher, Linda Gobberdiel, Luke and Sally Gran,Bobbie and Ty Gustafson, Chris Henning, Ryan Herman, Gail Hickenbottom, Eric Johnson,Wendy Johnon, Arlyn Kauffman, Dennis Keeney, Liz Kolbe, Laura Krouse, Brent Schlenker and Marilyn Barnes, Brian Moorhead, Doug and DeAnn Opheim, Mark and Melanie Peterson, David Roberts, Jeff and Mary Seago, Edward Shima,Charles Shirley, Margaret Smith and Doug Alert, Patricia Swenka,Angela and John Tedesco, Kurt Van Hulzen, Steve and June Weis, Ai Wen, Julie Wheelock, Angela Winburn, Ben Wise, Sally Worley, and Ben Yoder.