Exploring the Small Farm Dream

Are you thinking about starting a farm business? Join us and decide on an action plan that works best for your business goals.
Exploring the Small Farm Dream - Workshops
Skill Level: Beginner, Intermediate
Language: English

Starting at FREE

Starting at FREE

Get notified when new events are scheduled to occur. Enter your ZIP code and Distance willing to travel, or select Anywhere for all locations.


When: Thu., Nov. 1, 2018
Thu., Nov. 8, 2018
Thu., Nov. 15, 2018
(6:00 PM - 9:00 PM)

Where: Berks County Ag Center Penn State Extension Office
1238 County Welfare Rd., Suite 110
Leesport, Pennsylvania 19533

registration deadline: October 27, 2018
11:59 p.m.

Farmer's market vendors, farm stands, and u-pick fruit and vegetable farms are all agricultural businesses that started somewhere. Are you thinking about starting a farm business, but not sure how to get started?

The Exploring the Small Farm Dream course is designed to help you decide whether starting a farm business is right for you. This nine-hour (three evening sessions) course includes exploratory discussion, research tools, and self-assessment activities. By the end of the class you will decide on an action plan that works best for you and will have the tools and contacts to help you get started.


  • Session I: Self-Assessment and Researching the Farming Landscape
  • Session II: Assessing Resource and Risk
  • Session III: Decision-Making and Next Steps
Who is this for?
  • Anyone interested in starting a small farm business
  • Hobby and lifestyle farmers that are considering developing their farm into a business
  • Recently retired individuals or individuals who will retire soon who think they may want to start a small farm business
  • Immigrants with agricultural experience who wish to start farming in the US
  • Recent high school or college graduates who are considering a career in agriculture
  • Individuals who are inheriting or taking over a farm from a family member
What will you learn?
  • Learn how new and beginning farmers can access agricultural resources
  • Learn about opportunities to connect with local farm business owners, agricultural professionals, and others interested in new farm enterprises
  • Learn how to manage a small business
  • Learn how to assess and manage risks


Thursday, November 1, 2018
Thursday, November 8, 2018
Thursday, November 15, 2018

Self-Assessment/Researching the Farming Landscape

06:00 pm Day One

  • Welcome & Introductions
  • Becoming a Farm Business Owner
  • Rewards & Risks of Agricultural Business Ownership
  • Knowledge & Skills Assessment
  • Using Your Text
  • Introduction to Research

Assessing Resource & Risk

06:00 pm Day Two

  • Identifying Products, Customers & Market Options
  • Revenue Potential
  • Borrower/Lender Relationships
  • Applying Financial Concepts to the Dream
  • Funding Sources

Decision-Making & Next Steps

06:00 pm Day Three

  • Tour of Horn Farm & Realities of the Small Farm Dream
  • Your Take on Risks
  • Managing Small Farm Risks
  • Your Small Farm Decision
  • Revisiting Your Knowledge & Skill
  • Future Sources of Help in Launching Your Small Farm Dream


Soil Fertility Soil Health Cover Crops No-Till Planting and Planting Green Weed Management Forages and Forage Quality Pasture Management and Rotational Grazing Grazing Winter-Annuals, Summer Annuals, Brassicas, Extending the Grazing Season Crop Rotation Strategies Organic Farming New and Beginning Farmer/Start Farming Programs

More by Dave Wilson 

Commercial Horticulture Green Industry Vegetable, Small Fruit and Mushrooms Integrated Pest Management Conservation Practices FSMA and GAP Latino Community Outreach

More by Maria Gorgo-Gourovitch 

Business Landscape Business Management Business Planning Small Business Budgeting Starting a Business Financial Analysis Economics Operations Feasibility

More by John P. Wodehouse 


Only registered users can write reviews. Please, log in or register



What happens after I register for a workshop or conference?
How long are workshops and conferences?
What materials will I need to bring to a workshop or conference?
How should I dress for a workshop or conference?
Where will the workshop or conference take place?
When will the workshop or conference take place?
Where can I learn about the agenda for a workshop or conference?
What is included with my registration for a workshop or conference?
If a workshop or conference is at maximum capacity, can I be added to a waitlist?
Are workshops and conferences accessible for people who require special needs or services?
How do I register for an event or make a purchase over the phone?