By Rebekah Warren
For Brianna Barkey, a Michigan native, square dancing at Trevecca’s Barnaroo was her first truly southern event.
“Because I’m from the north, it was my first experience at Trevecca that felt truly southern,” said Barkey, a sophomore. “I was really naïve and I thought college in Tennessee would be like that all the time.”
Students, faculty and people from all over Nashville area arrived in plaid shirts and cowboy boots to learn a variety of square dance steps that they practiced to the sound of a live band. A table was set up to sell farm products, including goat soap, salves and t-shirts. Attendees had the opportunity to pet the farm’s goats and resident dogs, Bjorn and Delilah, as well as gather around a fire for smores.
It was an opportunity for the Trevecca community to celebrate the farm and raise money for the upcoming year.
“It’s a chance for the neighborhood to get to know that we are here,” said Karen Shaw, the coordinator for the urban farm. “Its also a fundraiser to help us run the farm.”
Shaw began working at the farm in 2012 as a volunteer and after the farm received a grant, they were able to hire her as a part-time employee.
In addition to farm staff, Barnaroo was hosted by student volunteers who ran the concession stand, sold tickets, helped set up beforehand, and cleaned up afterwards. Meghan Mapes, a freshman, volunteered to sell tickets.
“I saw it on Facebook and it sounded like fun,” said Mapes. “I wanted to help out and get in for free.”
For all involved, it was a time to engage in urban farm life and help the farm as they move in to the summer and upcoming year.
“ It was awesome to learn dance moves with people I really love,” said Barkey. “It was a bonding experience that made Tennessee feel like home.”