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Blue Heron Farm Highlights for 2009

Blue Heron Farm's Cabin roof undergoes repairWe were finally forced to put a new roof on The Cottage this summer. The previous roof consisted of three layers of asphalt shingles, and all three were well past their usable life. It was really challenging to strip all that asphalt, and we hope to never do a job of that sort again. The new metal roof should outlive us.

Winter turned out to be a bust for our vacation rental business given a relative lack of snow and the economic downturn nationally. To add to the farm’s economic stress, our local Board of Health notified us that they had determined that we are running either a Motel or a Lodging House. As absurd as that sounded to us and to anyone who has stayed in one of our rental houses, we could not convince them that they were incorrectly interpreting the Massachusetts Public Health statutes. Even when presented with two carefully-researched legal opinions, one from the lawyer we were forced to hire and the other from the lawyer for the County Building Commissioner, they did not back off and issued a “cease and desist order” in November. Fortunately, since they held an illegal meeting on Veteran’s Day (when all town offices were posted as “closed”), we were able to get them to rescind this order.

On the plus side of things, another Fjord, this time BHF Roan, a 5-year-old gelding, was sold to a new home in New York State. His new owner, Sue Baer, is, as she put it “GAGA” over him. Sue continues to ride and take lessons to develop his abilities still further. Roan has come along so well that he and Sue are part of a four horse quadrille at the barn where she rides.