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A year in the complex and beautiful life of first-generation American farmers.
81 backers pledged $6,105 to help bring this project to life.
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$6,105

81

*** WE are THRILLED to have met our goal!!! BUT we are still raising funds BECAUSE every dollar we raise beyond our goal will directly go into post-production which begins this fall. There's still lots of work to be done! Please join us! ***

Brookford Almanac is a year in the complex and beautiful life of first-generation American farmers. A young couple is living their dream of raising a family on a farm in New Hampshire, but with their lease set to expire, the future is uncertain. This is a film about old and new rituals, physical labor, land ethics and what comes next for American farming.

***NEW GIFT! SIGNED 12x18 Print by photographer Julian Russell for $75 pledge. To read the full story about the photograph & print visit our blog!***

***UPDATE: Check out our articles in CIVIL EATS and The Rambling Epicure****

Meet Luke and Catarina Mahoney. Neither grew up on a farm, but now they are living their dream of raising a family on an organic dairy tucked deep in the bend of a country road in Rollinsford, New Hampshire. Farming is not what Luke and Catarina’s parents expected them to do. They are part of a new generation of farmers that grew up in cities and suburbs and are drawn to the land—to farming—by their own desire for a connection to the land, not by their family’s expectations.

The story of young first-generation farmers is timely and important. Luke and Catarina are producing healthy food and feeding families, and they have become a vital part of seacoast New Hampshire’s food community. As they raise their crops, they are also raising interest in a new kind of food economy, and for those who find themselves drawn to the land, a new way of making a living. Now is an important moment to document the young farmers’ movement. This isn’t the story of saving the proverbial dying family farm. It is the story of beginnings. It is the story about pioneering a new way of life in the face of countless obstacles: limited land access, rising debt, arduous physical labor. It is also the story of national and global issues that necessarily intersect with the life of a farm: food security, obesity, “big agriculture,” and peak oil.

Alice Waters has famously said, “Learning to make the right choices about food is the single most important key to environmental awareness — for ourselves, and especially for our children.” Making food personal, making it local, and helping people, especially children, to learn where it comes from and how it is grown helps everyone to make the right choices about how we feed ourselves.

Film Style:

I have been filming at Brookford Farm for over a year now and I will continue to film into the next growing season. The film is primarily shot in an observational, vérité style and focuses on the daily life, struggles and activities of the farm.

The film will have an original score composed by Julian Russell. Julian composed the music for our last film, Borderland, as well as for the Sundance award-winning documentary Ballot Measure 9. A sample of the soundtrack can be heard in the video above.

Your Support:

The production of the film is at an important juncture. Luke and Catarina's lease at Brookford Farm is not being renewed and so they have begun the difficult task of looking for a new farm. Your support will help us continue to film through the next growing season so that we can tell this important story which includes the crucial issue of land access and security for first-generation farmers. In late 2011 we will begin post-production and editing of the film.

This film has received support from the LEF Foundation and the Film Study Center at Harvard.

Stay in Touch: Join us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and also sign up for updates on our Website.

Check out Julian Russell's portraits of the young farmers of Brookford Farm at our Website and see more of his photography HERE.

From the Portsmouth Herald.

Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1

    Every dollar counts! We will send you a big hug of gratitude, and we'll also LIST YOUR NAME on our website as a supporter of the film.

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    You get a VERY SPECIAL THANKS on our website, as well as a protected link to behind-the-scenes pictures, exclusive news for supporters and video messages from the director.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    This is a special one: You will get a UNIQUE RINGTONE based on the film’s music by composer Julian Russell and you will of course get the special thanks and protected link on our website too.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Better yet: You get YOUR NAME ON THE SCREEN under 'Special Thanks', AND you get a DOWNLOADABLE VERSION of the FILM before the DVD is available. You'll also get the ringtone, a very special thanks on our website, as well as a protected link with behind-the-scenes footage.

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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    You get a copy of the Brookford Almanac DVD, as well as a special edition, signed 8x10 POSTER of the film! You ALSO get a special thanks on our website and access to protected links and yes, your name will be on the closing credits of the film!

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    You get a yummy quark & camembert CHEESE BASKET of goodies from Brookford Farm (75 mile delivery radius of the farm) along with a copy of the DVD and POSTER! You ALSO get a special thanks on our website and access to protected links and yes, your name will be on the closing credits of the film!

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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    SIGNED 12x18 "FEATHER" PRINT by Photographer Julian Russell printed on Moab Lasal matte archival paper AND a copy of the DVD! You ALSO get a special thanks on our website and access to protected links and yes, your name will be on the closing credits of the film!

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    You get all of the above plus you become an ASSOCIATE PRODUCER on our film! That means your name will appear in the end credits under the title "Associate Producers". Also included is the DVD and signed 8x10 POSTER.

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    You get the ASSOCIATE PRODUCER package (yes, all of the above - DVD, poster, credit in the movie, etc) AND you get 2 TICKETS to the exclusive premier SCREENING of the film in New Hampshire! (Transportation not included).

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $350 or more About $350

    You get the ASSOCIATE PRODUCER package (DVD, poster, credit in the movie, etc) AND you get 2 TICKETS to the exclusive PREMIERE of the film in New Hampshire! (Transportation not included). And you’re invited to a special pre-screening DINNER of LOCAL FOODS with the director and crew.

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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    You get the ASSOCIATE PRODUCER package (DVD, poster, credit in the movie, etc) AND you get 2 TICKETS to the exclusive PREMIERE of the film in New Hampshire! (Transportation not included). And you’re invited to a special pre-screening DINNER of local foods with the director and crew AND YOU GET TO NAME A YOUNG CALF and we’ll send you photo updates about your little dairy calf as she grows big and joins the Brookford herd!

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Funding period

- (30 days)