Sycamore Farm Community is a Community in Dialogue with the Federation of Egalitarian Communities, located in Arcadia, Virginia, about 30 miles north of Roanoke and 120 miles southwest of Twin Oaks and Acorn, via I-64 and I-81. We are on the James River (across railroad tracks), and across the street from Jefferson National Forest. We’re two miles from the Appalachian Trail. The community has started with the aim of functioning much in the way envisioned by Benton MacKaye, originator of the Appalachian Trail.
We have started a farming operation this year on about three acres of leased land in Rockbridge County. We are growing vegetable seed crops for several seed companies, winter squash for wholesale and retail markets, medicinal herbs for wholesale and retail, as well as doing grant-funded winter squash research and breeding work.
We are seeking others to join us in actualizing the following goals and visions. Please contact us if you are interested!
Goals and Vision:
To build a collectively owned, income sharing, egalitarian community here.
To support ourselves largely by agricultural businesses (including seeds, produce and medicinal herbs).
To grow (or gather) a good portion of our own food and medicine.
To be part of the Appalachian Trail project. The AT was originally envisioned, by socialist Benton MacKaye, as a network of walking paths connecting income-sharing communities. We want to bring this vision back to the AT. We plan to welcome and provide services for hikers, initially offering showers, food and a place to camp on an informal basis, and later on potentially inside sleeping space as well. We envision that some people who pass through as hikers will later come back to stay at or to join our community. We also want to help seed other communes along the AT.
To be involved and engaged in the surrounding community, making a positive contribution.
To be aware of and engaged in broader social and ecological issues and movements.
To do our best to not be in a state of denial about who we are or what we are doing or what’s going on around us.
To have thoughtful and heart-connected relationship with the land that deepens our ecological understanding and land stewardship/connection over time.
To prioritize individual healing in conjunction with communal healing.
To participate in communication that is heart-centered, thoughtful, open and unguarded.
To value and to have heart connection with each other and those around us.
To be a part of the FEC and other movements that aim to transform our economy so that it works for the earth, for all people (ourselves included), and for the wild plants and creatures.
The annual assembly for the FEC takes place during March, in an attempt to happen at the beginning of the year when it's least inconvenient to everyone. We have gardeners whose season hasn't yet kicked into high gear, a goat herd who's fielding baby goats (conveniently within range of the assembly), outdoor workers whose season hasn't totally started yet, and people to whom the changing of seasons has absolutely no effect.