Customers and community members tell us that our stories, and how they weave together, are an integral part of why they choose to support our farm.
We would like to share those stories with you.
There is a place in North Carolina,
in the morning shadow of a mountain
the Saura Native Americans called Jomeokee.
"The Great Guide"
It was carved by Mother Nature from the shores of the Iapetus Ocean, father to the Atlantic;
This place was gifted to them, and the people lived in harmony with the land for many generations, gaining sustenance from its abundance.
Time passed ...
... eventually the surrounding area was settled by foreigners. The land changed hands many times until it became a small family tobacco farm.
It was still considered the most beautiful and abundant land to be found in the shadows of the mountain, and it was a good place to raise a family.
The fertile fields provided the owners a good living, but over time, both the land and its owners wore out, and their children moved on.
Those who were left retired to a small corner of the property where they remain to this day.
New Owners, Renewed Purpose
In 2007, Richard and Michele purchased that worn out farm and became its stewards. They took their time to learn the lay of the land, and they nurtured their committment to recover the diversity and abundance that once thrived here all on its own.
RichardSoil Enthusiast • Family Physician • Skeptic • Grandfather
As a primary care physician, I observed and treated the effects of modern life, disconnected from the natural world. Read Richard's Story
MicheleCity Girl in the Country • Artist • Educator • Grandmother
Bringing the soil back to life brings continued life back to us.Read Michele's Story
That first fall, a cacophony of flocking Ravens presented the name: RavenRidge Family Farm
Enter Cynthia and NathanWhen the time came for the Wheeler's son Nathan to again settle, after spending some hard years reconnecting with the natural world, he together with his wife Cynthia took on the task of farming the land at RavenRidge. For her part, Cynthia brought a wealth of crucial prior knowledge and experience as an animal caretaker.
They have burrowed deep into this new, yet ancient way of managing land. Combining a deeply compassionate style with the newest science around what makes regenerative agriculture work.
CynthiaMother • Gardener • Massage Therapist • Horse Woman
It’s all connected: the soil, the living organisms above and below ground, our food, how we treat each other and the world around us.Read Cynthia's Story
NathanUnlikely farmer • Environmentalist • Web Developer • Father
Hemp in and of itself is not agriculture’s salvation. The way humans choose to grow hemp could be. Read Nathan's Story
A quick nod to Hidden Springs Horse Farm
Cynthia and Nathan also manage a second farm called Hidden Springs, on Cynthia's family land at the base of Sauratown mountain. Here is where they live, tend the forests, and raise and train animals of all kinds ( including two children ).
The Short of It
The ambition for RavenRidge is to turn the land management pratices of the past into possibility for a brighter future.
We raise and graze animals with compassion.
We grow hemp following regenerative practices.
And we make CBD products from that hemp.
But read on and you'll see, there’s so much more to our story than that.
The Rest of the Family
We'd be remiss not to mention at least some of the other folks who have contributed to the farm. As with any endeavor, it wouldn't be possible without support.
Grandma lives on the farm and has been involved from the beginning. She carried chicken poop from vine to vine at the original grape planting. She has seen animals of every sort come and go. And although she did spend much of her youth on a farm, she certainly never expected to spend her final years on one too!
In her ninth decade, Neva is still helping out wherever she can and has weighed in as many buckets of hemp as anyone over the past three years.
Thank you Grandma Hunt. We love you.
Grandkids, Cousins, Nieces and Nephews
Richard and Michele have two other children who, along with their families, have helped out whenever possible. Their creative minds, young backs, and constant encouragement have made life easier.
The Other Brother, and Borrowed Land
This brother belongs to Richard, so he's uncle to half of us. Ernie and his wife Cathy, standing on the tree trunk in the picture above, run their own successful farm business out of a small plot of land adjacent to RavenRidge. They are educators and homesteaders, and they help with the animals when no-one else is around.
The spent substrate from their mushroom business is one of the core ingredients in our hemp growing soil!
Last but not least, there is the menagerie of animals that travel from farm to farm, doing what they do best.
The hogs are rooting.
The chickens are laying eggs and eating bugs.
The cows are grazing contentedly.
And the horses ... well, they are just hanging out waiting for a scratch.