I am deeply saddened by news of the impending conversion of Tilly Foster Farm, which has historically benefited the local community and public at large under the management of George and Meredith Whipple. I am even more distressed by the County's mistreatment of the Whipples -- who have been targeted, maligned and scape-goated by the 'powers-that-be' to bring about the end of Tilly Foster Farm -- as we knew it.
I am distressed also by the prospect of county officials pandering to lobbyists with myopic visions of the 'public good.' But let the peddlers of county land use beware ~ denying public access to county land is a cause that cuts against the very heartblood of any electorate. This is especially true in Putnam County where the quiet beauty of Tilly Foster Farm's well-kept (pristine) grounds, graceful land-swells and panoramic view, presented a vision not easily wrested from impassioned individuals, who have experienced the farm's unique 'magic' and awesome peace.
Moreover, I have long been impressed by the noble character of the Whipples, and know well the hard work and generous 'beyond the call of duty' service they extend to farm visitors of all ages and to other not-for-profit (501(c)3) organizations, such as The Nicholas Tersigni Memorial Foundation.
The Nicholas Tersigni Memorial Foundation raises funds for medical research into "Prader-Willi Syndrome" and other congenital birth defects. I served as a volunteer in the cotton candy booth at the foundation's annual fund-raiser ("Nicholas' Festival") October 5, 2013 at Tilly Foster Farm. The festival brought abundant joy to local families and visitors of all ages.
Thank you God, for the sunshine and beautiful opportunity to serve. Thank you Meredith , for working tirelessly to make it happen. Thank you both Meredith and George, for your selfless devotion to the farm – to the animals -- and to the good people of Putnam County.
Mary Ann Di Bari, Esq., Pound Ridge, New York