July 6, 2007 |
Gilbert P. Thompson, 88, of Phoenixville, a dairyman who became a successful golf-course owner, died of renal failure Sunday at home. For more than 20 years, Mr. Thompson operated Maplecroft, a dairy farm, milk-processing and home-delivery operation, and retail store in Phoenixville. In 1981, Mr. Thompson sold his cows and, with his six sons, developed Pickering Valley Golf Course, which opened in 1985 on the site of his former farm. Several years later, he told a reporter that he knew absolutely nothing about the game, but that since opening the course, he observed that golfers were "filled with good spirits" when they headed out to play.
September 15, 2006 |
The Holsteins rushed nervously out of the long, white cattle truck into their new home, a Bucks County barn that had been empty for seven years. Unlike the 24 cows that arrived Monday from Union County, Rich Wendig, 22, appeared perfectly calm in his ragged, graying John Deere cap - especially for a young man who has just signed on for a life of rising in the middle of the night to milk cows. Wendig - who did not grow up on a farm, but has wanted to be a dairy farmer since childhood - is getting an opportunity that most aspiring dairy farmers can only dream of: financial backing to help build a $70,000 herd that totals 40 cows.
June 16, 2006 |
The Yardley mother had been sitting on the steps of her favorite ice-cream parlor, eating her cone and plotting. "I plan to be there at least once a week before it closes," she said later. "I'm just buying things and putting them in the freezer and hoping" that all that accumulated ice cream lasts and lasts and lasts. When the Goodnoe Farm Dairy Bar closes forever - at 10 p.m. on Labor Day - Patti Smialkowski hopes she will have enough ice cream banked in her freezer so that the parlor will not be a memory.
February 12, 2006 |
Steve Wassell, a Chester County resident, pulled up to the sliding-glass doors of the Swiss Farm store drive-through in Broomall and ordered six gallons of diet iced tea. Wassell, a Westtown-East Goshen police officer, was in Delaware County for training and decided to stock up on a favorite beverage at the familiar store with the red-topped silo. "I grew up in Marple Township," Wassell said. "We've been coming here since I was a kid. " He's waiting for a Swiss Farms in Chester County.
October 27, 2005 |
Oh, the elegant egg: simple in form, straightforward in content, a perfect little protein-filled package. Until recently, buying eggs involved only choosing between white or brown, picking a size, then opening the carton to see if any shells were cracked. But all that has changed. The egg section of the dairy case is crowded now with newfangled varieties - eggs enriched with omega-3 fatty acids and other nutrients, organic eggs, fertile eggs, eggs pasteurized in the shell or laid by hens living "cage-free.
September 14, 2005 |
Pedro Martinez Cruz milks cows for a living. He works 60 hours a week, takes home about $8 an hour, and sends every last dime he can spare back to his wife in Chiapas, Mexico. The 43-year-old, who lives in Lancaster, is at work by 6 a.m. and doesn't get home until 12 hours later. It's a hard job, he said, but he's gotten used to it. "Esta bien," he said yesterday with a shrug of his shoulders, indicating in Spanish that all was good. Still, Cruz's daily dairy reality is a far cry from the lucrative income that House Speaker John M. Perzel is making it out to be. The Philadelphia Republican is drawing fire - and ire - for what many are calling inaccurate and insensitive comments he made about milkers at a gathering of the Republican State Committee in Harrisburg on Saturday.
July 29, 2005 |
A cold, wet spring followed by a blazing early summer has blessed cornfields and peach orchards, though some crop and dairy farmers have been hurt. "I believe this is probably one of the best growing years for us in a long time," said John Yerkes, co-owner of None Such Farm, a vegetable and berry producer in Bucks County. And in Burlington County, Pete Johnson said "we're having a great year" in the fields of Johnson's Corner Farm. The June hay, however, was too damp, and the heat-stressed dairy cows aren't eating it anyway.
March 29, 2005
Last week's congressional hearing on the use of steroids in major league baseball called public attention to an epidemic of substance abuse by more than 500,000 young American athletes. Anabolic steroids, such as testosterone, progesterone, estradiol, zeranol, and other growth hormones, promote muscle growth and strength. However, prolonged use has been implicated in breast, prostate, and testicular cancer, heart disease, sexual and reproductive disorders, immunodeficiencies, and liver damage, as well as abnormal growth and premature sexual development in young girls.
March 17, 2005 |
When Randy Mitchell was sentenced to prison two years ago, he figured he'd be serving time with a bunch of animals. He was right, but not in the way he imagined. "They have personalities. You really bond with them," he said as he groomed Petey, a playful, pregnant Holstein. "I'm showing compassion again. I lost a lot of that because of what I was involved with on the street. " Mitchell, serving a five-year term for burglary and drug possession, is one of 40 inmates who help run the Jones Farm dairy and milk plant, a minimum-security prison in Ewing, Mercer County.
November 10, 2004 |
The decision to shoot deer on the Chester County farm where the University of Pennsylvania's veterinary students study the care of large animals was a hard one, but one official said they felt was necessary. Still, animal rights activists plan a protest in Philadelphia tomorrow. "The state recommends that a square mile for 10 to 12 deer is adequate. We have 300 on a square mile," said David Nunamaker, an award-winning veterinarian and chairman of clinical studies at Penn's New Bolton Center near London Grove.