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Sunflowers in Bloom

Ruralites Bren Frisch and John Roberts take both farming and parenting more seriously than most. While they work the fields at their Longmont-area Sunflower Farm, they're also active as foster and adoptive parents who recognize the value of farm life in rearing kids who've had a rough start. A few years ago, after seeing the difference it made for their own adoptive son — "He's a special-needs guy," Roberts notes — they began to open the farm up to kids funneled through Boulder County Social Services; from there, the more general Kids' Farmfest was born.

Sunflower now opens its gates to the public every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., May through October, for an informal family romp that includes self-guided tours, pony rides, animal visits, hand-built treehouses, a hay maze and more. "Almost every Saturday, I'll talk to one or two kids who've never seen a goat before," says Roberts, who shrugs off the notion of Sunflower Farm being an "agritainment" venue and points out that the minimal entry fee barely supports the venture. "It's a lot of work for not much return, but it's worth it for the kids," he adds. "I wish there were more farms doing this." Soon, though, even little Sunflower might have to shut down, due to zoning issues with the Boulder County Land Use Department. To fund their legal fight to remain operative, Frisch and Roberts are hosting special public-fundraising Farmfest days on the first Sunday of each month through September. Bring a picnic and have fun while helping: Sunflower Farm is at 11150 Prospect Road, Longmont; admission is $3 to $7. Call 303-661-0954 or go to
Sundays, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Starts: Sept. 2. Continues through Oct. 28


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