HARRISBURG, Pa. — If you would have asked Justin Steinmetz if his wife, Lauren’s idea of baby goat snuggling was a crazy idea, he would have agreed and even thought she “was a bit nuts.”
However, with Lauren’s persuading, Steinmetz Family Farm held its first goat snuggling stand at the Kutztown Folk Festival in July 2022. The event was extremely successful and has opened doors to even more opportunities where the beloved baby goats can shine. The Steinmetz’s now share its love of goats with others at nursing homes, birthday parties, hospitals, fairs and more. The biggest stage, to date, the farm has been a part of was the 107th Pennsylvania Farm Show held Jan. 7 to 14. In response to the event at the Farm Show, Justin explained, “The level of interest and success has simply blown us away.”
The success of the goat snuggling event not only brought smiles to the faces of the farm’s staff, but also to the Friends of the Pennsylvania Farm Show Foundation, Inc. The family graciously decided to partner with the Friends and gave half of the entrance fee profits to the Friends. Justin and Lauren heard about the Friends of the Pennsylvania Farm Show Foundation, Inc. through the Pennsylvania Farm Show and when they found out about its mission, they wanted to contribute to the organization as they too believe, “it is so important to continue to teach our children and teens about farming and agriculture in Pennsylvania.” The Friends exist in order to stimulate, facilitate and support educational programs, incentives and events relating to the annual Pennsylvania Farm Show.
The Steinmetz’s admiration of its kids run deep, but they had no idea that the farm and its goats would become so famous in the publics’ eyes. Those who follow the farm on its Facebook page, have fallen in love with the goats and look forward to seeing what new adventure they get into each day. Due to the livestreams on Facebook featuring the goats and the farm, it brought supporters from New York, Connecticut, North Carolina, Iowa and Colorado to the Pennsylvania Farm Show to show their support.
There is a good chance many believe that goat snuggling is only for children. That is not the case. “Once adults get into our stand and have a baby in their lap, they quickly realize that they never want to leave. Holding a baby goat is very therapeutic. It calms you and brings you so much joy. It does wonders for coping with anxiety and depression,” Justin explained.
Steinmetz Family Farm plans to bring its love of baby goats to the attendees at the Pennsylvania Farm Show next year with even more babies to snuggle and shorter wait times.
Steinmetz Family Farm is a small 12-acre farm located in Fleetwood, Pa. A fairly new business, they specialize in baby goats, but also have livestock as well. The farm offers petting zoos, parties on the farm, goat yoga, seasonal events open to the public and the popular “Rent-a-Goat” program. This program allows you to rent a baby goat for the day and take them home to snuggle and love.
When the couple purchased the farm three-and-a-half years ago, the land did not include a barn. Lauren continues to work as a full-time kindergarten teacher and Justin left his contractor job to devote his time to goat farming full-time. Through their busy schedules, they are saving as much as possible through its goat snuggling, farm parties, fairs and goat yoga events to put towards erecting a brand new barn. The support of constructing the barn from fans has been overwhelming and they encouraged the farm to start a GoFundMe account called Steinmetz Family Farm Animal Barn Raising Fund. The goal is to raise $100,000.
For more information about the farm and its events, visit steinmetzfamilyfarm.com and join with the 50,000 followers and supporters on Facebook at Steinmetz Family Farm.
The Friends of the Pennsylvania Farm Show Foundation, Inc. would like to extend its appreciation to the Steinmetz Family Farm for its support.
–Friends of the Pennsylvania Farm Show Foundation