SHARON WYRRICK, farmer, started Many Forks Farm in the 2012 season as a 1/2 acre market garden and so the farm story began. Her own story is part of what led her to the farm’s name with her many forks previous to farming — a career in the performing arts as a choreographer, director, filmmaker, and playwright, a community organizer in the areas of health, education and the arts, and always with the constant thread of growing vegetables along the way. She is grateful to have found her way to full-time farming before the final digging fork found her.
Sharon grew up in Oklahoma, ended up in Washington, D.C. to complete her masters degree in performing arts at American University. A subsequent move to rural Rappahannock County, Virginia, nursed her lifelong interest in growing food as she became acquainted with the farms and farmers in that community. When she relocated to the Berkshires to remarry, she knew it was the right time to transition to what she had been holding in reserve ever since she had her first garden. The numerous forks that she hopes will continue to sink into the farm’s produce, now staged on household tables, is a dream realized.
PAT LANG, assistant farmer, is a Berkshires native, having spent his entire childhood in Great Barrington. Following college and a number of different jobs, Pat’s interest in food growing, sustainability, and well-being crystallized with a farm internship at Poughkeepsie Farm Project in 2013. Pat spent several seasons learning by growing at PFP, and in 2017 he relocated to the midwest with his partner, Nick. They created and ran Hexagon Projects & Farm for 3 years, growing 1/2 acre of vegetables on land that had been neglected for some years before. Seriously missing the geography of New England as well as many loved ones in the area, they decided to sell the farm to another couple of beginning farmers. From late 2020 to the end of 2021, Pat returned to Poughkeepsie Farm Project to serve as Farm Production Director.
Outside of seeding, planting, weeding, harvesting, and such, Pat enjoys cooking, baking, knitting & crochet, reading, learning film photography, long walks, and trying not to completely lose his ability to speak French. Having just settled in North Adams in November 2021, Pat is excited to grow vegetables sustainably on a small scale, collaborating with and learning from Sharon, and serving the Many Forks community.
LISA GREENBERG, farm apprentice, is thrilled to be at Many Forks this season and to get to know the farm community. In 2019 a volunteer experience with The US Peace Corps in the little country of Eswatini in Africa pulled the concrete out from under Lisa’s feet and she discovered she was not a big city gal after all. Goodbye to the bright lights of NYC & LA! Lisa traded up for the twinkling lights of the dark-sky-country-stars. Having never planted anything and with a self-proclaimed uncanny ability to kill most plants, she discovered farming via a series of WWOOFing opportunities in Washington, Oregon and California followed by a 6-month apprenticeship on Washington’s Whidbey Island at the fabulous 1.5-acre Good Cheer Garden. At Good Cheer, Lisa deepened her reverence for growing vegetables, fruits and flowers with the joy of providing for the on-site food pantry that serves over 800 families per month.
Not ready to make a go of it with land of her own, Lisa is exploring how she will combine her past loves of modern dance and a career in social work caring for youth with her 2-year old crush growing food for community. Getting to know the Many Forks CSA members will keep Lisa charged up and able to sustain the long days of farming that await.
NICHOLAS RIGGER, baker, grew up in Minnesota where he attended the University of Minnesota and received his undergraduate degree in Studio Art in 2010. Several moves around the country and several years later Nicholas and his partner, Patrick, ended up in Wisconsin where they founded Hexagon Projects & Farm in 2017. During their time in Wisconsin, in addition to honing their farming practices and tending the land, they welcomed artists as part of an informal residency.
Over the last few years Nicholas has been baking and cooking much more extensively. He sees it as an outlet for his creativity and a natural extension and evolution from farming and the visual arts. He is looking forward to furthering his baking pursuits at Many Forks Farm and developing new recipes centered on produce grown at the farm and sharing these treats with the Many Forks community in the new farm processing kitchen coming online in 2022.
DONNA ENGEL, harvest/wash/pack crew, currently lives in Stamford,Vermont, with her husband John. Retired from her career as a computer systems programmer, she loves to travel to places near and far and is hopeful to have the opportunity to travel even more in the future. Donna has been a CSA member at Many Forks since 2018, and enjoys the opportunities she has to both work and volunteer at the farm.
MATT SILLIMAN, the ‘all around the edges’ crew, keeps the farm looking trim, maintains the machinery and the farmhouse, digs hugels and drainage, runs deer fence, mows the farm’s hiking perimeter, and does random errands and odd jobs, such as supply runs. He puts in additional time helping Sharon solve farm problems in her ‘off hours,’ cooks dinner for her every evening at the end of her long farming days, and stays alert to the hope of an occasional day off to spend some non-farming time with her. He loves her more than the farm, but knows this is the price a farm spouse pays for being hitched to the agriculturally obsessed.