For we farmers and staff at Willamette Westwind Farm, hosting folks for the 2017 Total Eclipse this year was both a rare opportunity, and something of a gamble for us. We've this vision of hosting folks nearly year-round in a unique kind of Farm Stay — we want to host you and yours in RVs, Campers and Tents to come and explore life on a small family farm. And in Benton County that's not yet allowed on Exclusive Farm Use land.
So when our city and county allowed farmers and other land owners to set-up temporary campgrounds to accommodate the hundreds of thousands of visitors for the eclipse, we jumped all over the chance to host folks and see if our idea could fly.
And we are SO GLAD we did! We could not have hand-picked a better group of families than those who arrived on our farm from hither and yon.
We also envision being a practical, boots-on-the-ground testing site for alternative energy, as well as exploring new ways of gardening in an area like our floodplain that makes diversifying our crops a challenge due to the flooding that occurs half of the year.
We had 109 campers with us over the incredible 2017 Total Eclipse weekend – coming from as far as British Columbia, Canada and South Texas, Seattle, San Diego and all points in between.
We were tickled to be in the news during the weekend as well – here in THIS ARTICLE by Sierra Club field-reporter Wendy Becktold, and THIS STORY by Daniela Hernandez from the Wall Street Journal. Wendy was a guest with her husband and son, and Daniela had just been driving by while on assignment to cover the science of the eclipse in Oregon. Many thanks for these lovely stories!
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