I am trying to purchase 3 acres of land for the purpose of growing food for the temple and devotees needs. And to spark and interest in the idea of having a farm near as posible to the devotee community of the Chicago area. Although 3 acres is not enough land to do very much it is a start and practical because of the price.
One of the other reasons we started to look for land was to house a Ratha Yatra Cart that Chicago community can have built or build our selves. One of the difficulties of having a Ratha cart is storing it after it is built and used. Some sufficient land and garage or barn is needed for the cart. One of the difficulties is zoning problems. I found that it is very difficult to build a garage with out a house on the property. I don't have the money to build a house at this time and we may not be able to build a garage before the house. The house has to come first. If it is a barn we may be able to build.
I talked with the realtor about two hours ago he is saying that some of his clients are starting to realize that they are not charging enough for the land and less land is available. I am paying about $2000 per acre and all other acreage that I have looked at is going for $15,000 to $30,000 an acre. The area that I am looking at is typically under $6,000 an acre. So not to put the pressure on but if we want to buy the time is now.
Obviously this land is not prime real estate and it appears that the people that live in that area are not financially well off. This land is very sandy and may be a little more difficult to grow food but not impossible.
Claudia and I plus her mom and grandma just went to a U-Pick farm yesteray in Homer Glen. It was about 1 hour from Rogers Park in the SW burbs.
They have been farming for decades but 25 years ago they started more of an orchard and 5 years ago they started doing a U-Pick farm. They charge $5.00 per person, we didn't have to pay for the baby or dog, and you go out and pick fruits and veggies. In addition, you pay for the fruits and veggies by the pound.
I have done this for years (family tradition) in Michigan usually picking apples. Each farm has 1, maybe 2, different items they grow. The unique thing about this farm was they had tons of variety. We got 3 different kinds of apples, raspberries, 3 kinds of concord grapes, peaches, a variety of jalapeno peppers (couldn't keep Claudia's grandma, whose from Mexico, out of this patch) tomatoes, cauliflower...lots of stuff.
The farm is taking off and doing financially well. I would attribute a lot of their success to the fact this area is being developed into a popular suburb. We saw many suburban families usually only getting a few apples or a few of this or that. On the other hand, our wagon was loaded.
We brought lunch to the orchard and had a picnic. Many families, especially with children, were engaged in different activities they had to offer and made a day out of it.
Now I have a very fruitive mentality but I couldn't help but vision a U-Pick Hare Krsna farm with a veggie restuarant and some preaching facility such as books, diaramos, maybe even plays. There could be workshops for schools..so many possibilities.
If this were to be successful, which would take time, it could financially justify families, or at least a family, living their full time. It would also be an excellent preaching tool and could develop into the purchase of more acres to further facilitate sustainable living.
I know a U-pick farm is not in the category of sustainable farming but it could be a step towards that direction and also be a HUGE step in preacing sustainable living.
I don't see why we can't have a U Picket area of farm land to raise money to pay bills.
What is the status of the purchase?
It looks like I will be closing on the 14th of this month. I guess the first few things I need to do is get a sign in front of the property to make it easy to find and make a nice map for everyone. Maybe a camp out or something with the devotees. I have some camping things. I have a nice tent, screen tent and propane stove.
Check out my profile pic and be amazed at the clarity!!! JK! ys, DAS
OM PURNAM ADA PURNAM IDAM PURNAT PURNAM UDACATYE PURNASYA PURNAMADYA PURNAM EVAM VASISYATE OM SHANTI SHANTI SHANTI BHAVATU
article that Romapada swami sent me