Christmas Gift Baskets Available

The first snow of the season today makes us feel like we are a little bit closer to Christmas. At the farm store, we have Christmas Gift baskets made up and ready to go. These make GREAT hostess gifts for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Also, think teacher gifts, co-worker gifts, anyone really!

We know many of you like to pre-order gift baskets for pick-up, and we still have that option available! We have a new, (hopefully) easy-to-use order page set up HERE! Use this page to order packages to be picked up in-store.

New this year, we have gift boxes available to be shipped (pictured below)! These can also be ordered here.

We also have other local and regional products available that make great gifts!

Soaps from Jessi Leeper make great stocking stuffers (or add them to one of our gift baskets, like we did above!).

We have some beautiful handmade charcuterie boards that would be a great gift for someone or for yourself if you are the one hosting Thanksgiving or Christmas.

To go on your charcuterie board, we are now carrying summer sausage and beef sticks from Beaver Creek Farm right here in Cowley County.

We also have artwork by Emily Werner available in the store.

Ribbon Cutting at the Werner Creek Farm Store

We were sure humbled by the number of people who came out IN THE RAIN for our ribbon cutting. We celebrated the opening of our store in the rain, with confetti, and then went and did the same thing at two other businesses within two blocks! We are so happy to have new neighbors at Main St. Skate and Walnut Valley Outpost!

Goats in Costumes

So, we did a thing the last weekend in October. We brought our goat friends, Frankie, Daisy, Peaches, and Beast to the farm store in their Halloween costumes. We had a blast, and the goats tolerated the costumes in exchange for all the pets. We also brought one golden retriever in a lion costume – just because. We think he forgot he was wearing a costume because he got all the hugs.

If you missed Goats in Costumes this year, don’t worry! We are planning to make it an annual event.

Upcoming Events and Dates

November 26 – Small Business Saturday – Shop all of Winfield’s small businesses the Saturday after Thanksgiving! We will have in-store specials and treats that day.

December 16 – last day to place online orders for pick-up and shipping

December 23 – final day the farm store will be open before Christmas, and final day to purchase gift baskets in-store.

That’s all for now! See you soon at the farm store!

From Sarah at Werner Creek Farm

Store Opening!

Our little farm store opened for business the first week in September! Our current hours of operation are:

Wednesdays – 4-6 pm

Thursdays – 4-6 pm

Fridays – 4-6 pm

Saturdays – 11 am-5 pm

We plan to expand/adjust our hours starting in November. We would love to hear from YOU, our customers, on what days and times you would be most likely to stop by and shop.

Our store is an extension of our farm and is designed to help us connect with people for more of the year, not just during farmers market season. We will also offer a carefully curated selection of products from other local growers and makers. Everything you find in the store comes from within a 100 mile radius, and most products are grown or made right here in Cowley County! If there is a local or regional product that you would purchase if we carried it in the store, let us know! We are always looking to expand our product line.

We are also looking for local makers interested in having a pop-up shop in our store for a week at a time during the month of December. If this is you, or you know a local maker, let us know!

Products currently in-stock at the store:

Produce:

Tomatoes, heirloom and hybrid (we only have a few more weeks left of tomatoes!)

Mini romaine lettuce

Microgreens (learn more about Microgreens here)

Pears

Pumpkins – Buy One Get One FREE this Saturday!

Canned Goods:

Salsa – Mild, Medium, and Hot

Jam/Jelly – Blackberry Jam, Blackberry Jalapeno Jam, Apple/Grape Jelly, Elderberry Jelly, Aronia Jam, Aronia Jelly, Mixed Fruit Jelly, Spiced Tomato Jam

Sweet Hot Sauce

Apple Butter

Other Werner Creek Farm Products:

Farm Fresh Eggs

Houseplants – Buy One Get One FREE this Saturday!

Local Beeswax Lip Balm and Hand Balm

Carved Halloween Gourds

Other Local and Regional Products:

Handmade Soaps from The Soap Box (Winfield, KS)

Local Raw Honey (Arkansas City, KS)

Mama Lupe’s Tortilla Chips (made in Moundridge, KS)

Art by Emily Werner (Winfield, KS)

Handmade Charcuterie Boards by Mike VanMeter (Winfield, KS)

We Are Hiring!

Expanding hours at our store means we need more help! We are currently hiring for a store clerk available 10-12 hours each week, primarily on weekdays, mid-day to late afternoon. Applicants interested should contact me at sarah@wernercreekfarm.com. Potential for additional hours during the holiday season.

Early Freeze

An early freeze this week messed things up a little bit on the farm. But thanks to our high tunnels and some low tunnels, we were able to keep some of the produce going.

All field tomatoes, peppers, and okra are done for, but we covered the low tunnel hoops (pictured above) over our lettuce and cabbage with plastic and they came through just swimmingly. Still waiting (and waiting, and waiting ….. ) for some rain to help germinate some spinach and carrots we hope to grow this winter.

We hope you will bear with us this year as we fine-tune the ins and outs of growing vegetables over the winter. It’s certainly not a perfect science and will take us awhile to figure out.

Upcoming Events

Oh, we’ve got some awesome and weird things planned at the farm store in the next month!

October 22 – Buy One Get One FREE Houseplants and Pumpkins at the Farm Store!

October 29 – Goats in Costumes at the Farm Store at Ladybird Brewing

(This is all in theory, of course. We have four super sweet goats, and four costumes we will attempt to put them in that day. Bring your kids out for a picture with Goats in Costumes! Or, just enjoy the ridiculousness of watching us attempt to put costumes on our goats. And drink some Ladybird Beer.)

Monday, October 31 – Downtown Trick or Treat – we will be handing out candy at the store from 4-6 pm

November 4-5 – Holiday Open House and Ribbon Cutting

  • Winfield Area Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting at 4 pm, Friday November 4
  • Christmas Gift Baskets Available for purchase starting this weekend*
  • Homemade Refreshments all weekend long

November 26 – Small Business Saturday – Shop all of Winfield’s small businesses!

*A note about our Christmas Gift Baskets – we will have them available for purchase at the store, and available online for pre-order to pick up at the store!

This year, we will also offer shipping for our farm products! Shipped products will need to be ordered online. Website coming SOON!

That’s all for now! See you soon at the farm store!

From Sarah at Werner Creek Farm

Werner Creek Farm Store Opening Next Week

I know. This picture looks only marginally different than the first one we shared way back in July. Since that time, we’ve had electrical work done, concrete poured, finished the interior, and learned way more about city codes than we ever wanted to know. The last piece is moving in fixtures and finishing up signage.

The good news is – it’s almost time to open! We should be stocked and ready to sell by Thursday, September 8, or as we call it here in Winfield, LAND RUSH DAY (Walnut Valley Festival fans will get this …)If you catch us there in the meantime, feel free to pop in and check things out!

Starting out, we will have everything we have for sale at farmers markets (seasonal produce, jams and jellies, salsa, and sweet hot sauce), plus our beeswax lip and hand balms, house plants, zinnia bouquets, NEW beeswax reusable food wrap cloths, local honey, locally made soap from The Soap Box, bundles of firewood, Werner Creek Farm t-shirts, and a small collection of pumpkins and gourds from our farm. Our hens should start laying eggs any day (come on girls!), so we will have farm fresh eggs very soon.

Now … the not so good news. Our dedicated farmers market customers (and boy, are they dedicated, and boy, do we love them!) know that all produce growers have had a seat on the struggle bus this year. When you get a summer THIS hot and THIS dry, produce just quits. Gage has done an amazing job this year of coaxing produce along so that we have had something to share. But it has not been nearly the yield we should have had, or expected.

I’m not sharing this for pity – we’re making do, and we know we are a LOT better off than most farmers simply because our crop fields are small enough we can irrigate – but I do share it so our customers will understand why our small store isn’t overflowing with produce right now.

But I’ve heard it said that there is no one more optimistic than a farmer. You know the whole, “Build it and they will come,” mantra? … we’re going with a “Build it and they (veggies) will grow.”

We have the store ready. We don’t yet have the produce we had hoped to have. But it will come.

Speaking of what’s coming next, we have these beautiful starts all ready to go in the ground this weekend: Romaine lettuce, broccoli, cabbage, and brussels sprouts. A few weeks ago, we planted spinach, radishes, more lettuce and broccoli that is just starting to pop after last week’s rain.

Value-added products

We have been working this summer to stock up on all of our value added products – jams, jellies, and sauces – to be ready to open the store. A note about our value-added products – everything we make is in small batches, which means products are not identical. When we make a batch of blackberry jalapeno one month, the peppers might not be as hot as the next time, so there is slight variation in our products. Just a fun little fact about small-batch products as opposed to commercially produced items.

For example, below is a jar with apple grape jelly from two different batches. One batch had much more vibrant grape juice resulting in a much darker color. The recipe was exactly the same!

That’s all for now! Ike says, “Come see us soon at the Farm Store!” We continue to be at the Walnut Valley Farmers Market every Saturday morning from 7:30-11:00 and the Ark City Farm and Art Market on Tuesdays from 4:00 – 6:30 pm.

From Sarah at Werner Creek Farm

BIG NEWS – Farm Store opening soon!

Those of you who follow us on Facebook or Instagram may have already seen the exciting news that a building was delivered mid-June that will soon house our in-town Farm Store! This is a huge step for us and something we have dreamed of doing for years. With Gage making the transition this fall from teaching to farming full-time, the time seems right.

We will use the store to sell all of the goodies we currently sell at farmers markets and more. (We will still be at farmers markets, too btw). We will be scaling up production of our produce, especially off-season, to be able to have fresh food to sell for as much of the year as possible. We will also be scaling up the variety of our canned goods we offer as we finalize certification on our kitchen facility at the farm. Lastly, we will be looking to add new products to our store, either ones we make or grow, or products produced by other small-scale farmers and makers.

What we love most about what we do is growing and creating great products and connecting with the people who purchase them. We could not be more excited about the prospect of connecting with more people at the store and offering more great local products for people to purchase. In our current economic climate, we also believe this tiny store can offer locals a little peace of mind that, even if the grocery store shelves are sometimes limited or partially bare, we remain committed to producing food and making it available to those in our community. Food shortages are scary, and we hope the opening of our farm store will help provide some peace of mind that we are committed to continuing to producing good, wholesome, delicious food.

Fact – we would not have made this leap so soon without the awesome partnership and support from our good friends at Ladybird Brewing. Our tiny store is located on their property at 523 Main Street in Winfield. We are excited to introduce some of our farm product-loving customers to their delicious brews and vice versa.

Time line on the opening of our store remains fluid. We are already operating at full-steam this time of year, so scratching out time to finish the interior of the building and get everything up to code is iffy at best. Stay tuned later this month for more info on an opening date.

We would love to hear your input on what hours you would be most likely to shop. We plan to be open at least a few late afternoons/evenings a week, and then on Saturdays and a few hours on Sundays. But we want to make it convenient for our customers, so please tell us when you would be most likely to stop by the store.

Also, if there are local products you would like to see us carry in our store, please let us know.

Prime vegetable season

We have had some of the best produce we have ever grown this year. We had radishes for a few weeks, spinach and lettuce for a bit longer, and we continue to have carrots, kale, swiss chard, beets, potatoes and onions. We have started harvesting the sweetest cucumbers you have ever tasted, delicious green beans, plump and juicy blackberries, summer squash, and finally … TOMATOES! Winter squash, okra and fresh cut flowers are coming soon.

Goat Update

Here comes the news that is hardest to share. After nearly ten years of raising goats, we made the decision this spring to sell our goat herd. We sold all but four goats – Daisy, Peaches, Frankie, and Beast, a few of our bottle babies from this year and last. The decision to sell our herd was a financial one, we need more time to focus in on the areas of our farm that are most profitable, since we are hoping that the farm can support one of us full-time.

As soon as the goats were gone, our 8-year-old daughter asked me why I was so sad. I explained to her that just because something is difficult doesn’t mean it wasn’t the right decision. It’s always hard to let go of something you have cared for, and these goats received a lot of our attention and care over the last ten years.

We will have a goat herd again some day. But for now, we will enjoy the easy maintenance and companionship of our little bottle babies.

We continue to be at the Walnut Valley Farmers Market every Saturday morning from 7:30-11:00 and the Ark City Farm and Art Market on Tuesdays from 4:00 – 6:30 pm. Looking forward to seeing you all soon at farmers market or the farm store!

From Sarah at Werner Creek Farm

“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.” Audrey Hepburn

Farmers Market Season

I know it’s such a cliche, but where has the time gone? Farmers Market season begins NEXT WEEK, Saturday, May 28 with the opening of the Walnut Valley Farmers Market! Tuesday, May 31 will be the opening of the Ark City Farm and Art Market. We can’t wait to see all of our customers and market friends again!

Vegetables are all coming along nicely. For the first markets, we will have some beets, radishes, carrots, spinach, kale and swiss chard. Cucumbers are a few weeks out, and tomatoes are at least a month out, but looking good.

Farmers Market Giveaway

To celebrate our 15th year in business, we are doing a series of giveaways, specials, etc. throughout the year. Our first giveaway will be these cute, reusable totes featuring our logo. Anyone spending $15 or more at a farmers market will get one of these bags!

Plants, Plants, Plants

We have a large selection of nice houseplants we will have available at early farmers markets this year! Our plants include succulents, ferns, spider plants, swedish ivy, pothos and more. We have many already potted up in terra cotta pots, ready for a place in your home.

Hope to see all of you very soon at farmers market!

From Sarah at Werner Creek Farm