Tottys Bend Soap Farm: Stop #8 on the Arts & Ag Tour of Hickman County

Friendly Goat at Tottys Bend Soap Farm

Friendly Goat at Tottys Bend Soap Farm

Tottys Bend Soap Farm will be joining the the Arts and Ag Tour on Friday and Saturday, for the fifth year in a row, as stop number 8 on the tour map. There you can see firsthand how owners Nate and Vanessa Davis raise their goats and make a variety of skin care products from their goat milk. The Davis’ moved to Hickman County from Atlanta, GA in the summer of 2006. The couple was immediately drawn to the idea of raising dairy goats for milk and cheese. Soon they had a small, productive herd of registered Nubian goats. Neither Nate nor Vanessa had any experience with goats or farming of any kind. They relied on advice from experienced goat farmers and did much of their early learning through trial and error.

Tottys Bend Soap Bar

Tottys Bend Goat Milk Soap

In 2010, with a few years of goat farming under their belts, the couple decided to experiment with making goat milk soap. At first they gave their handmade soap to friends and family but soon they began selling their goat milk soaps at the Centerville Marketplace, a shop on the square in Historic Downtown Centerville, just a few miles from their farm. This was the perfect place for the Davis’ to try out different styles and scents of soap on local shoppers. Within the year, the Davis’ created what has become their signature goat milk soap, a four ounce rectangular bar embellished with a decorative Celtic pattern. It was in the fall of 2010 that Nate and Vanessa Davis founded Tottys Bend Soap Farm.

Totty's Bend Soaps

Goat Milk Soaps hand made by Nate and Vanessa.

The following year, Tottys Bend Soaps hit the shelves in several Tennessee Whole Foods stores. While the exposure at Whole Foods has been a blessing to the small company, the Davis’ agree their favorite venue is still Centerville Marketplace for its local charm and loyal customers. They also enjoy setting up a booth and selling their products directly to their customers during the Arts & Ag Tour. “There is nothing more rewarding than to talk to our customers in person. At the Arts & Ag Tour we can share our story and talk about our handmade goat milk soaps. People love to meet our goats, and learn about the nourishing benefits of goat milk, and the natural ingredients that go into our products,” says Nate. In addition to their goat milk soap bars, Tottys Bend Soap Farm also offers handmade goat milk lotions, shaving soaps, talc-free body powder and all natural lip balm. “We make over 25 different scents from recipes that are gentle on sensitive skin,” says Vanessa.

Goat Milking Demo at Tottys Bend Soap Farm

Goat Milking Demonstration

Goat expert Pam Hethcote from Possum Hollow Farm and owner of Star Brite Goat milk Soaps and Lotions will also be there with her handmade items. She and the Davis’ longtime friendship developed from their mutual love of raising dairy goats. “We goat people stick together!” says Hethcote. Brenda Estes, another fellow goat farmer, will also be onsite doing milking demonstrations. Early visitors are invited to milk one of Brenda’s dairy goats. Goat cheese and fresh goat milk samples will also be available to visitors of Tottys Bend Soap Farm during the Arts & Ag Tour.

JoAnne’s Creations will be set up with her beautiful handcrafted jewelry and fabric creations as well as homemade jams and sweets.

See www.TottysBendSoaps.com  or go to Tottys Bend Farm on Facebook for more information about Tottys Bend Soap Farm.

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Harvest Market Vendors!!

Haverst Market Image for blog

Just a few weeks away, our Harvest Market Vendors are working hard to have plenty of their home-grown and handmade products for you to enjoy! Here is a list of some of the 32 vendors and friendly faces you will find on October 18th!!
Claudie Mae’s Farm – petting zoo with ponies and Carl the Llama as well as farm raised pork and sausage
Mama’s Naturals – jewelry and clay bookmarks

Droplette Jewelry – healing salve and herbal tea blends

Jo Neace Krause Art – Fine art

Possum Hollow Farm – goat milk products and petting goats

JP Creatives – handmade picture frames and Xmas ornaments

Adventure Jewelry – handmade jewelry

Dale’s Barn Wood Imaginations – handmade benches, bookshelves, tables, etc.

Back to the Roots Farm – fall produce 

Woodchips and Sawdust – woodworking and hand-painted saw blades

Clara’s Kitchen – fried pies, canned goods, bread, etc.

Joanne’s Creations – Jewelry, sewing, baked and canned goods

Terra Bambino – organic baby bedding and unique gifts

Pinewood Farms – farm produce

Beaverdam Creek Farm – farm meats and produce

Woodworks – hand-made wooden boxes and other items

Holt Farming Company – information about herd-sharing dairy farm

Sheri Bulla Loofah’s and WreathsBulla Farm–local grapevine wreaths and home-grown loofah

Woodworks–hand-made woodworked items

Glenda Lovell Art – prints and notecards or original artwork

LuLu’s – seasonal sweets and hot beverages

Four Directions to Health – chair massage

Sunnyside Farms–farm and herbal products

Natural Herbal Healing – herbal products

A & W Enterprises, LLC – custom handmade pens and woodcrafts

Barefoot Farmgirl – honey, hand knitted items, and skin care

Reclaimed Heritage Farm – fry bread, bakery and other farm produce

Totty’s Bend Goat Soap – goat milk soap and lotion

Hickman County Garden Club – plants

Grinders Switch Foundation

Council on Aging 

Clay Harris Theater

Hickman Health Council – kids activities and health info

Sunnyside Farm – herbal sprays, and culinary herb mixes

Bonnie’s Beads  – handmade beaded jewelry

Carl’s Calls – hand-made duck, deer, and turkey calls

Chef Sara Horowitzgourmet BBQ and good eats!

And so much more!!! 

We can’t wait to see you!!

 

Arts & Ag Harvest Market – October 18th at Grinder’s Switch Winery

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Arts & Ag Harvest Market 2014

Bringing the back roads Tour into a “one-stop” marketplace for Holiday shopping

‘Tis the season when crisp autumn air rejuvenates the spirit, multi-colored leaves light up the forests, and nature’s waning harvest reminds us to start stocking up for the winter ahead. The creators of the Arts & Ag Tour invite you to come celebrate the bounties of the season at the Arts & Ag Harvest Market, on Saturday, October 18th from 10:00 a.m.- 5:00 p.m. Featuring some of the county’s best homegrown farm goods, arts and crafts, music, and award-winning wine, this outdoor market will set up on the picturesque grounds of the Grinder’s Switch Winery just off Highway 50 West in Centerville, Tennessee and offer a great opportunity to get a head start on your holiday shopping.

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Inside the Winery’s cozy, hand built log cabin, owners Gail and Joey Chessor welcome visitors to free tastings of their Tennessee wines. With selections from sweet to dry, there is something for every palette. Their four estate grown wines are named after old trains (inspired by the local train history of Grinder’s Switch) and each feature a classic locomotive on the label. Also inside the log cabin is a gift shop with wine related gifts, cheeses, snacks, and some local crafts. Learn more about Grinder’s Switch Winery and their many offerings at gswinery.com.

In addition to shopping the Harvest Market, visitors can savor smoked barbeque and tasty fixin’s (delicious washed down with a crisp glass of Dixiana, the Winery’s newest dry white) while listening to live music by Brown’s Giftshop Revival Band and many more! . Stop by the Arts & Ag information booth for information about what they do and why they do it, or just to say, “Hello!”

Stay posted for vendor spotlights and new details about the Harvest Market by subscribing to the blog at artsandagtour.wordpress.com, and “like” Arts & Ag Tour on Facebook. You can also visit Wild Duck Soup Emporium, the Unofficial Arts & Ag Headquarters, at 105 South Public Square in Centerville, or call 931 729 0690.

Mark your calendars now for October 18th – you will not want to miss the Arts & Ag Harvest Market!

 

New Eden Farm Stop #16: Pastured Prok, Chicken and Goat Dairy-by Elise New

Over the hills, through the trees, and at the end of a bumpy dirt road, you’ll find New Eden Farm. When the road opens up into pasture, you know you’re getting close, and when the road ends, well, you’re there. 

At New Eden Farm, you’ll find a small herd of grass fed cattle, pastured pigs, diary goats, and an up-and-coming flock of meat bred chickens.

You won’t want to miss this stop on the Arts and Ag Tour! 

Pastured Pork

We will have a freezer full of the highest quality pastured pork you can imagine. I’m particularly proud of this one, having been one of the ones who lugged the daily bucket of whey-soaked non-GMO grain out to the heritage breed pigs. When we first started keeping pigs in the same pasture as the cattle, we weren’t entirely sure how we would keep the cows from eating the pig’s grain, but the aggressive nature of the pig makes it a non issue. That pig isn’t going to leave any room for a cow to stick her head in the trough!

Goat Cheese

Goats are definitely another favorite thing of mine. Whereas Gabriel, my husband and founder of New Eden Farm, is a cattle lover all the way, I like to spend my time with the goats. 

You’ll definitely want to sample our herb infused goat cheese while you’re here! There is just nothing like it.

The mild flavored, finely textured cheese is only one reason I love goats so much.

Goat  Milk Soap

Goat milk soap is unparalleled in the world of soaps for its skin softening power. From the first day we used it, we knew that there was no going back to conventional bars! Add in some amazing smelling essential oil blends, and a few beautiful botanicals, and you have something really special. 

Making soap has become one of my greatest pleasures here on the farm, and we will have eight different varieties here for you to see and smell, including an insect repellent bar.

Goat milking Demonstrations

I could go on all day about the benefits of having your own dairy goat, and why they’re a better choice for small families – especially those of us with small children – than a cow, but my space here is limited, so be sure to come for one of our 10:00 A.M., or 2:00 P.M. milking demonstrations, for an earful, and be sure to bring your questions with you!

Patured Chicken

We are so blessed to have the Lemmon family for neighbors. There couldn’t be a kinder, sweeter, more giving family on the planet. 

The Lemmons have been raising pastured poultry for their own family’s use for some time, and now, their nutritious chicken is available to the public. We’re thrilled to be able to host them for this year’s Arts and Ag Tour, and will have a freezer full of these delicious birds packaged and ready for you. (So bring your coolers!)

Homemade Bread

There is just nothing better than homemade bread, is there? I’m so happy this year to be able to offer our Amish style homemade bread, in both white, and whole wheat varieties, as well as cinnamon rolls. 

Our bread contains only five ingredients – all of them easily pronounceable. In fact, you probably have all of them in your pantry already (flour, salt, yeast, oil, and a smidgen of sugar). There are NO preservatives, and NO chemicals in homemade bread, and you won’t find anything this soft and fresh in a store! Be sure to try it while you’re here. 

Blacksmithing Demonstrations

On Saturday, Dustin Morgan will be giving blacksmiths demonstrations. I’m rather looking forward to this. There’s something about a forge and an anvil that just take me back to the Wild West. Old school blacksmithing is not something we have he opportunity to see every day, so be sure to take advantage of this opportunity!

Homemade Jams 

In addition to all these things, we will have a selection of delicious homemade jams and jellies available. I’m in love with our grape jam. Made from locally sourced Concord grapes, it packs a punch of flavor that frankly, I’ve never tasted in a jar of any commercial brand. I never thought I’d say that grape jam is my favorite, but I must admit, it’s very close to knocking apricot out of the top spot! 

Are you drooling yet? I am! 

See you this weekend!


Elise is the home and dairy manager at New Eden Farm, and author of frugalfarmwife.com where she blogs about simple living, farming, and shares gluten-free recipes.

French Market, Dairy Cows, Free-Ranged Chickens, Organic Meats, Breads, Tea Blends and More at Stop #30

Heritage Farm LogoHeritage Reclaimed Farm, established 2012 has all Middle Tennessee has to offer; rolling hills, open pastures, ponds, creeks & gravity fed springs. The Charles and Shona Shough family moved to middle Tennessee for the purpose of being part of a community of faith, establish better food systems, and to help serve their neighbors. They are raising their two sons to reclaim the land and the Heritage of their homestead.

In their commitment to better health, and good stewards of the Land, they raise their happy pigs, content chickens and blissful bovines using organic feed and chemical free pastured grass. During the 2014 Hickman County Arts and Ag Tour, they will be featuring a French Market, displaying nostalgic items from the farm, and explaining the different farm ventures they are involved in. You can purchase Organic, rustic, artisan bread, organic raw milk grass-fed cheeses, pastured organic sausage and pork chops, and homemade tea blends. When visiting the farm, you will enjoy the scenic beauties of Middle Tennessee.

pig at heritage

They will be featuring a lunch plate of smoked, shredded open face pork sandwich on fried bread, with a large serving of fresh organic homemade cole slaw. If you desire something sweet while visiting, they will be making French beignet fry-bread topped with strawberry jam and /or powdered sugar. The pork used for the lunch plate was raised in their own wooded glens and pastures, and fed all organic feed and vegetables.

On the tour, come and meet their Heritage Large Black Hog named Queen of Sheba. She is very friendly and loves to have her picture taken. New to the farm, is a 2 week old Jersey calf named Bullet. You may experience milking one of their two Jersey A2 milk cows; Isabella and Martha Dean. You may also learn how to build and setup a chicken tractor, or rotate their herd of Devon and Angus Cattle. This day is sure to be memorable, and they invite all to come and take a stroll around the farm, and garden and enjoy the beauty of special homestead.

Carl the Llama, Wilbur the Pig, Pony Rides, Crafts and More at Stop #18

Claudie MaeDon’t miss Claudie Mae’s Farm, located in the Shipp’s Bend area! With farm animals, food, and crafts for sale it is fun for the entire family. Kids love the pony rides and farm animals, especially “Wilbur” the adorable mini pot belly pig, and “Carl” the coolest llama ever!

Claudie Mae’s will be doing an educational piece for the kids at 11am and 4pm both Friday and Saturday. Learn about the animals and what their jobs are on the farm. At 2pm on Friday and Saturday Miss Minnie Pearl will make an appearance – after all – she was born and raised right across the way in Grinders Switch. Hotdogs will be on sale for lunch each day. Two artists will be featured at the farm: A and W Enterprises, selling handmade pens and other wood crafts. Amas Veritas, selling natural soaps, lotions, and shaving products.

Claudie Mae’s specializes in Birthday Parties, but when they aren’t partying they open the farm up to share with kids and adults! Sign up for drawings throughout the day on Friday and Saturday. The Grand Prize will be a FREE two hour birthday party at the farm. Come by and put your name in the hat! Claudie Mae can’t wait to see you there on May 23rd and 24th from 10 am -6pm.

Visit their website at claudiemaes.com and like them on facebook!

Preview Arts & Ag Tour Stop #1

Stop # 1, Wild Duck Soup Emporium, welcomes you to the Third Annual Arts & Ag Tour.

Grab a hard copy, printed version, of the 2014 Tour Guide here and meet Arts & Ag co-founder Antonia Meadors. Meadors opened Wild Duck Soup Emporium, the unofficial headquarters of Arts & Ag, in 2011. Since then her venue has grown to be the premiere art gallery in the county as well as a haven for those seeking natural foods, local honey, herbal supplements and other healthful items.

As the unofficial headquarters of Arts & Ag, Wild Duck Soup Emporium is THE place to get the inside scoop on everything related to the Tour and to participate in our Tour Guide activities:

  • If you take a photo of your favorite stop on the Tour and post it on our facebook page, you can get a free I Love Back Roads bumper sticker from the counter at Wild Duck Soup Emporium.
  • If you guess which number belongs in the blank star on the Tour Map, head to that stop and get them to sign your Tour Guide, you can get a free Arts & Ag gift from Wild Duck Soup Emporium!
Left: Antonia Meadors, Owner Wild Duck Soup  Right: Cindy Sarlo, Arts & Ag Photographer

Left: Antonia Meadors, Owner Wild Duck Soup
Right: Cindy Sarlo, Arts & Ag Photographer

Several artists and exhibits will be on site at Stop #1. You’ll have the opportunity to meet Cindy Sarlo, the Official Photographer for Arts & Ag, and to view her recent works, including photographs from last year’s Tour. You’ll hear live music from local fiddlist, Mark Baczynski and singer-songwriter Gloria McCord. Tour the patio garden and view works by sculptor, Daniel Sheridan and folk artist, Jo Neace Krause.

Meadors, a native of Hickman County, is a wealth of information regarding local foods and the people who grow them. She is plugged into the extensive network of artists, craftsmen and musicians who call Hickman County home and proudly offers many of their one-of-a-kind pieces for sale at Wild Duck Soup Emporium. Her enthusiasm for all things local and her positive, encouraging attitude makes Wild Duck Soup Emporium an exciting hub of local activity with a friendly, inviting atmosphere. Come see for yourself during the Arts & Ag Tour this Memorial Day Weekend!