submitted by Deirdre Towers
A hundred years ago, the locals in small town America pitched in to raise a barn, but in this era of global awareness, erecting a yurt may be cause for a gathering of foreigners. And so it was on July 29, an overcast morning in Stephentown, NY, when Thom Pecoraro and Julie Cerny raised the Wyomanock Center yurt, a round, dome shaped tent traditionally used by nomads in Central Asia, on his Wyomanock Farm with volunteers from Czech Republic, England, California, and Manhattan, along with several friends.
Ten years earlier, Pecoraro had planted maple trees in a circle with the thought of putting something in the center. That thought germinated into the establishment of a non-profit, the Wyomanock Center for Sustainable Living, for programs and events on his 75 acre property. Wyomanock Center’s mission, a 501-c-3 non-profit, is to provide farm based education and programs that foster nature appreciation and self sufficiency.
This entrepreneur, originally from Queens, raises beef cattle and eggs, grows organic produce for wholesale and his roadside stand. He also is a landscaper and manages rental properties that he rehabilitated in Stephentown and Pittsfield, MA.
Holistic ecologist David Hunt led a class in foraging for the Stephentown Summer Youth program kids, while two volunteers weeded rows of garlic and onions, as the 30’ yurt took shape and the crew followed instructions provided by Colorado Yurt. Everyone was dazzled by the efficiency of the construction of the yurt which was designed for quick dismantling and re-assembling, to suit the nomadic nature of yurt creators.
Wyomanock center will hold the next potluck, offered every 2 months, on August 12, 4 to 7 pm. On August 19 and 20 Wyomanock Center has scheduled walks and family activities as part of the “Celebrate Stephentown” weekend. Visit wyoCenter.org for the schedule.
For more information, contact: Thom Pecoraro, 413-329-1400; thom at wyofarm.com; or mail to 68 Wyomanock Road. Stephentown, NY 12168.