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Farm-to-Needle

  • Old Homestead Alpacas 5260 Stateline Road Walla Walla, WA, 99362 United States (map)

Spend a spring morning exploring the finer details involved in small scale, sustainable, natural fiber production. Join Elaine Vandiver of Old Homestead Alpacas, a US Army combat veteran turned first generation farmer, as she shares how she manages and raises 35 alpacas to produce a line of farm-raised knitwear and specialty yarns.

The workshop will focus on all things alpaca, from breeding and birthing to basic care and beyond.Animal husbandry demonstrations, along with discussions on pasture management and rotational grazing, will give participants an overview of alpaca ranching. A hands-on discussion on commercial and hand fiber processing, complete with a fiber ‘tasting’, will provide participants a true appreciation for the farm-to-needle journey.

No trip to her farm would be complete without a glimpse back into the property’s awe-inspiring homestead heritage. On display will be enlarged copies of the original, handwritten documents that chronicle the farm’s settlement dating back to 1870 and will culminate in the conveyance of the land to the original homesteader by signature of President Ulysses S. Grant. This will be a complete sensory event with a little bit of something for everyone!


Suitability: Children 10 and over, welcome. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Difficulty: Involves short walks and standing for periods of time.

Things to Bring

Participants should wear comfortable shoes or boots for walking and standing, as well as attire suitable for a morning on the farm. This will be a rain or shine event, so depending on the weather, a hat with a brim, sunglasses and sunscreen would be beneficial. Bring a refillable water bottle, your camera and a sense of adventure.


Earlier Event: April 22
Nature Kids: Earth Day
Later Event: May 5
Spring Awakening I