Don Zasada & Bridget Spann
Together we operate our family farm. We met as volunteers in Chile while working as community organizers in a rural village. We are living our dream. Dreams are a lot of work!
After living in Boston for 7 years working with The Food Project as the Director of Agriculture (Don) and at Massachusetts General Hospital as a domestic violence advocate (Bridget), we were ready to move out of the city and find long-term security on some agricultural land in the Northeast. A long search ensued, culminating with finding Caretaker Farm.
Our work and way of life at Caretaker Farm is our response to our life experience. We see connection to the land that grows our produce as vital to understanding our responsibility to each other and the earth.
Our two spectacular children, Gabriela and Micah, call Caretaker Farm their home.
You will often see Gabriela in the distribution area where she loves to organize the displays. Her presence can be felt all over the farm as she adds her creative touch to enhance and draw out the beauty of this space. When she isn’t involved in her loves of swimming, rowing or biking, Gabriela assists the crew when they need some added strength for a job. She loves to harvest scallions and her favorite vegetables are carrots, cherry tomatoes and brussels sprouts.
It is a rare day when Micah is not found down in the fields working with the crew barefoot! Since he was 2 years old, Micah has had an affinity for assisting with the varied tasks across the agricultural season. He especially enjoys early harvest mornings. The summer brings along some competing interests of baseball and fishing, but he always seems to find time to get his hands in the soil. His favorite vegetables to harvest include sweet potatoes, garlic and onions and he loves to eat husk cherries and carrots.
Cameron was a Caretaker Farm apprentice in 2010 and 2011. During the 2012 season she co-managed the farm with Don as he and his family lived in Chile for much of the growing season. For 5 years, Cameron managed her own CSA in New Lebanon, NY called Trusted Roots CSA. We are thrilled to have Cameron back at Caretaker Farm. She is the assistant farm manager and in charge of the Winter CSA. In addition to farming, Cameron enjoys soccer, biking and reading. Her favorite vegetables are potatoes, beets and carrots.
Matt is a first-year apprentice at Caretaker Farm. While spending a full season at a farm in Illinois, he solidified his interest in small scale sustainable agriculture and eating great food. Matt can be found playing his ukulele in the flower garden, creating masterpieces in the kitchen, sprinting around the farm or engaged in rich conversation. His hearty laugh fills the land with joy. Although it is practically impossible to get him to narrow down his answer, some of Matt’s favorite vegetables are Bok Choy and Scallions.
Wilson joined Caretaker Farm through the MESA program that places agricultural trainees from overseas to learn from farms in the United States. He grew up in Colombia and his family has a sugar cane farm and also grows a little bit of coffee. Wilson has a degree in biology and hopes to pursue a Masters in the future. His positive attitude at all times of day and in every form of weather is infectious. After work, you will see him riding around on a bike, working on his soccer skills, hanging out with the chickens and wandering around the farm with binoculars looking at birds and insects. Wilson hopes to bring back the knowledge that he is gaining at Caretaker Farm to diversify his family’s farming operation. HIs favorite vegetables are Cucumbers and Lettuce.