Guestbook: Previous Posts

Tori Buser
August 7th 2013 06:53:51 PM

How did you hear about TGMR?
From a friend, Katie Lantaff
Where are you from?
Allentown, PA
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My name is Tori Buser and I am an uprising junior at Juniata College. My program of emphasis is psychology and I am specifically interested in studying child psychology. This year, when looking for a summer internship, I came across the Gress Mountain Ranch’s Human Services Internship under the supervision of owner, Kathryn Gress. I had volunteered a few times at Gress in previous years, and always enjoyed my time at the ranch. I wanted to learn more about animal-assisted therapy, so I decided that Gress would be the perfect place to mix my love for helping both people and animals!
The most important thing I learned at Gress this summer is the ranch’s mission: people helping animals and animals helping people. The human-animal bond is clearly seen at the ranch each day. Just as every person has his or her own story and own obstacles, all of the animals at the Gress Ranch do too. Many of the animals at the ranch were abused and neglected in the past. When people hear about the animals’ struggles, it allows them to relate to the animals and open up about the issues they are facing in their own lives. People see how we help the animals at the ranch overcome problems, and as a result, they realize that they too can be helped to overcome their individual obstacles. By feeding and taking care of the animals each day, we are able to help them. The animals, in turn, are able to help by providing us with a sense of friendship, security, and worth.
My main role at the Gress Mountain Ranch this summer was Ranch Camp Co-Coordinator. This job entailed exploring ways to advertise for the camp, recruiting campers, keeping track of the children’s paperwork, and asking for both camp scholarships and food donations. As the co-coordinator, I spoke to parents, school guidance counselors, businesses, and other individuals face-to-face and via telephone and email in order to prepare for the three week-long camps. It was also my job to arrange for presenters to visit our camp. Additionally, I helped create a detailed schedule for each week, and edited a daily newsletter that we handed out to the ranch camp parents each day. I also worked with Mia Bobenko, a long-term Gress Mountain Ranch volunteer, to recruit adult and junior volunteers as counselors for our camps. It was our job to then schedule a meeting with all of the volunteers before each camp to go over details for the upcoming week.
While at the Gress Mountain Ranch, I was fortunate enough to be able to meet many different types of people. Visitors to the Gress Mountain Ranch often include individuals with emotional, psychological, developmental, and physical disabilities. I was able to work with individuals with Aspergers, mental retardation, autism, attention deficit disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, depression, and bipolar disorder. It was truly amazing to see these individuals grow, while helping the animals at the ranch at the same time.
Overall, my experience at the Gress Mountain Ranch was beneficial to me not only as a psychology student, but also as a young adult. I learned numerous life skills, dealing with communication, animal care, and time management, as well as skills involving children. I truly enjoyed being able to work with and getting to know each of the children at the three Ranch Camps. They all seemed to really enjoy their week of camp, and it was extremely fulfilling to know that we provided a place for each of them to make new friends, work with animals they may never have seen before, and become educated on a variety of new topics. The Gress Mountain Ranch has helped to enrich many lives, including my own, and I hope that it is able to continue to do so for years to come.

April 1st 2013 08:38:02 AM
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Dear Ellyn

i got the letter about upcoming event, so excited, My girls remember bring Little Bobby to you during the winter when we found him out side in the cold. Hope to get to you soon to help out. Keep up the great work

Cynthia Bachman
February 1st 2013 04:42:36 PM

Where are you from?
Wescosville, Pa
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I was more than excited when I heard of an opportunity to do volunteer work at a Ranch with more than 50 animals. When I was a child, my summers were spent with my amazing grandparents on their little farm. My only friends in the summers were our goats. lol. That time spent with the animals started a great love for all creatures large and small. Volunteering at the Gress Mountain Ranch has done such great things for me personally and seeing the love Kathryn has for her animals is an inspiration to me and others I’m sure. I am a recent LPN graduate who is currently looking for work and volunteering here has made not finding a job so much easier. I wake up knowing that even though I don’t have a paying job to go to I am still making a difference in someone’s life. I hope and pray that more people become aware of this great place and donate in any way possible. These are great people with great animals and they deserve the best from us all. Kathryn, thank you so much for allowing my to be a part of your cause.
With Love for all,

Ellyn Siftar
January 20th 2013 12:51:53 AM

Where are you from?
Bethlehem, PA
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Thank you to Kathryn and Ben Gress for allowing us the opportunity to volunteer at Gress Mountain Ranch! Our family of 6 usually goes on vacation over this holiday weekend but that was not the case this year. We found ourselves at home with the usual list of things we could do for entertainment: clean the house, watch a movie, play board games. But then my husband sent a list of volunteer opportunities to me and, when I saw the ranch, my heart danced. It’s a silly fantasy I have to live on a farm and work with animals and be outside. For my husband and kids, it’s a different story. Our kids don’t often spend much time outside and the minute I opened the car door at the end of the driveway, they hopped out and just stood there. Was this going to work?
By the time we had moved 10 steps, Miss Kathryn and some girls were feeding the ducks, acknowledged our arrival and came over to greet us. She showed our gang the way to the barn and put us right to work. We fed ducks and turkeys, prepared food for and fed the pigs and goats and helped move hay into the barn. My special project was putting a tarp on the duck pen to keep out the cold weather coming our way. I spent an hour wrestling with the tarp, sometimes with another volunteer, sometimes by myself. But that hour was one unfilled with anxiety or concern, other than the task right in front of me. I was perfectly serene.
I couldn’t believe how the time had just flown by and soon it was time for us to go. I had to peel my girls away from the new friends they had made, both the two-legged and the four-legged ones! Somewhere there is a picture on Kathryn’s camera of us all trying to pose with Rocky and Penny, the sweet Pyrnees. I’d like to see that photo someday. But until then, the memories of feeding Rascal, the sweet smell of hay and the antics of Hamlet will just have to do!

With gratitude,


Kathryn Gress
November 22nd 2012 08:39:51 PM
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Your support is extraordinary. Without you, our work would be simply impossible.

Wishing you and yours a warm and joyous Thanksgiving,

Kathryn Gress
November 7th 2012  10:13:21 AM

Where are you from?
Orefield Pa.
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This past Sunday, I was invited by Kathryn Gress to bless the over 50 animals that live on the beautiful 15 acres of Gress Mountain Ranch. These are no ordinary animals. All of them—donkeys, horses, alpacas, goats and more—have been rescued from abuse and neglect. Many of these animals would have been euthanized in any other setting because of their serious illnesses and injuries. Gress Mountain not only rescues and cares for these “hopeless cases” but also trains them to be therapy animals for people who themselves have needs for healing. The remarkable result is spiritually inspiring. LeRoy, the terminally ill pot-bellied pig who can hardly stand, brings comfort to a traumatized child by letting the child pet him and feed him. “Psycho Kitty,” a severely abused cat, is a profile in courage for abused children and adults. Miniature ponies Jo-Jo and Cecely not only give cart rides to children but also teach them how to care for animals. This “slice of heaven” in Orefield is all about giving and receiving.
Today’s worship, and our commitment to Asbury, is also all about giving and receiving. Let us praise God, from whom ALL blessings flow!
Pastor Glenn
Kathryn Gress
November 4th 2012 06:51:55 PM
•      Website
How did you hear about TGMR?
We started TGMR years ago.
Where are you from?
Orefield Pa.
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My Goodness, The Gress Mountain Ranch, was in the Allentown Parade, today, that was rescheduled due to SuperStorm Sandy last week. People came out for the parade. 7 volunteers and 7 animals, Ben handling 2 Great Pyrs, at one time! Mia handling Bond who went into a “cush” positon in the middle of the street.. A guy from the street yelled,”I can’t wait to see what she does next with the alpaca”..
.Mia was calm and Bond stood up~ Samatha handled Resolution, who was suprisingly calm, but was “kicking” his foot out…Heather, new volunteer, handled Cesear, the new kid literally on the Ranch. Ryan, dressed up and handled Rascal decorated in his “clown” outfit. KayLynn helped Kathryn who was dressed as a clown with “green hair”, work Princess. Then the sign broke, the decoration fell, Kathryn’s looked over, and Princess’s saddle was “falling off”. A man from the crowd, rushed over to push the saddle on up the fattty pony’s back. Ben noticed Rocky’s hat and costume were falling off…
Hey we pursued and great team work and got to the end of the Parade. A marshal of the Parade said, “You made it!”..We all cheered!!! As we stood by the Holiday Inn accross from PPL, a man ran out and said,”TGMR WON!” The volunteered Cheered, and encouraged Kathryn to run in and check it out! Yes, TGMR had WON a nice big trophy and 2nd Place price in the Marching Division of the Allentown Parade! Can you believe it?! We all were so Happy! THANK YOU ALL WONDERFUL FOLKS that are part of the Gress family! Later, after all the animals were away- Miss Mia and Kathryn celebrated at Cracker Barrell. The Best statement came later on that night….Mia said, “At TGMR” is the place where I can just be myself.” Thanks Mia, that’s exactly what Kathryn wants for you and everyone here.!KG

October 11th 2012 04:48:40 AM

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Dear Mrs. Kathy,
Hi. I don’t know if you remember me at all. I use to work on the ranch when I was in high school doing the work experience program. I am Mary. I would like to say that I am very sorry for the loss of Elle. I have checked out the web site many times and didnt know how to say i am sorry for the loss of Elle. She was a wonderful. I really enjoyed working on the ranch and i just want thank you and let you know that it met alot to me to work on the ranch when i was in high school and doing the work experience program. I had a lot of fun working on the ranch and i enjoyed being around all the animals but i would like to say that i very sorry for the loss of Elle. She was a wonderful and very loving horse and i am glad that i got to meet all the animals. Working on the ranch was the best job site i had. I would like to say again that i am very sorry for the loss of Elle. Hope to hear from you soon.

Linda Galanek
October 11th 2012 04:44:18 AM

How did you hear about TGMR?
brought Little Bobby
Where are you from?
Allentown PA
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Kathy i got the lettter about upcoming event, so excited, My girls remember bring Little Bobby to you during the winter when we found him out side in the cold. Hope to get to you soon to help out. Keep up the great work..GOD BLESS

September 20th 2012 06:22:58 AM
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wow, great site!


Angela Snyder
September 2nd 2012 05:43:10 PM

How did you hear about TGMR?
Where are you from?
Cedar Crest College
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I love the Gress Mountain Ranch! Kathryn and Ben, the volunteers, and animals are awesome. It’s such a rewarding experience taking care of the wide variety of residents  . Every time I go I learn something new. One of the best feelings I had was when Pearl Piggy finally started listening to me  .

I have done so many things at the ranch that I’ve never thought I’d ever do in my life. Directing Clarence the turkey back into his pen, riding a horse, washing alpaca fleece, and walking a goat across Kutztown University’s campus are just a few. Although I can’t get up to the ranch as much since the fall semester started, I frequently think of my friends and hope to get up there as soon as I can 

Lisa and Brandon Lamon
August 9th 2012 06:36:52 PM

How did you hear about TGMR?
Ranch Camp August 2012
Where are you from?
Slatington, PA
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It was wonderful to see my son come home from camp so happy every day. He was truly blessed with the opportunity to be able to attend, thus learning so much self confidence, team work, independence, and COMPASSION for the animals. Miss Jen was fabulous, and went above and beyond to keep me informed, she is truly amazing. Ranch Camp is the best thing my son has ever done and he is sad tomorrow is the last day. Hope camp runs next year, as we will definately have Brandon back!! LOL, it is so cute how he brags to the neighbors he scooped alpaca and pig poop. I thank you for everything my son has learned the past week! 

August 2nd 2012 10:23:56 PM

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I love animals, nice site! Sorry, last guestbook entry messed up with javascript

July 10th 2012  04:16:42 PM

How did you hear about TGMR?
Youth Mission Camp at my church
Where are you from?
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I loved the big, fuzzy, white pups and had fun walking them. I got to pick up a duck egg from the coop, and feed the goats and the turkey. The alpacas were really cute. I think it is really nice how the people at the farm help so many animals and then train the animals to help people. I had so much fun at Gress Mountain Ranch and can’t wait to go back!! 

June 25th 2012 05:12:17 AM
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How did you hear about TGMR?
school counseler
Where are you from?
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i love it there i it soooooooooooo fun i cant wait to go volunteer there          

Hillie Cousart
May 31st 2012  06:47:01 PM

How did you hear about TGMR?
Where are you from?
Lehigh Valley
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Dear Kathryn and Gress Mountain Ranch Volunteers,

As a psychologist, I am so grateful to have found TGMR as a place to volunteer. The Ranch is a precious place in the Lehigh Valley, where there are too few services for the many underserved children, youth and adults who live here. On any given day at the Ranch, I can meet children with autism and their case workers, young women on probation doing community service hours, psychology or veterinary interns ‘learning through doing’, scouts or school students learning skills while creating projects that benefit the animals. What an amazing stream of lives cross paths at this sanctuary! And how did this network of education, animal-welfare, therapy, and environmental care, develop? It came from the passion of Kathryn Gress.

Kathryn, thank you for sharing with us your wealth of knowledge, gentle focus, and abiding love for all the animal companions. You have inspired us always to think about how the Ranch can support and involve more people and organizations, how we can serve more clients, more young probationers, how we can connect to our local institutions of higher learning and social service. In all my years in public service, I have not encountered a more holistic organization. I’m always amazed when I pause to think of all the lives affected on The Gress Mountain Ranch’s 15 acres.

Thank you to Kathryn and all who take part,

Hillie Cousart, Ph.D.

May 30th 2012  01:10:12 PM
How did you hear about TGMR?
former web person
Where are you from?
Biglerville PA
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Kathryn the new site looks great! And congratulations on your new puppy. Hugs and Happiness to ALL.

Christine Weaver
May 26th 2012  06:10:07 AM

How did you hear about TGMR?
My daughter works as a volunteer at the ranch- she asked me to join her for the day
Where are you from?
Lehigh Valley
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I can’t believe I am saying this but….FLINGING poop can be fun! So is hard work and improving the life of a neglected, over-worked, quirky, or unwanted animal. Kathryn sets the tone by treating the animals with so much dignity and love. You cannot help but want to do the same. And, then you get to know the animals–I loved them all but Pearl, the pot belly pig, is one of my favorites. She couldn’t wait to get out of her stall and into the yard for her popcorn, cucumber, watermelon breakfast. The trick is getting her to want to go back inside after she sees all the glorious grass and clover she can eat. She came back to the barn very obediently but under great protest and lots of back talk! All of the animals have their own story and soulful personality. I didn’t meet one who wasn’t ‘known’ or didn’t have a name. It was also obvious that every ONE is loved on a daily basis but given greater care and attention when they are sick or dying. I am so proud of my daughter for what she does at the ranch. She’s patient and kind and believes that providing the animals with a clean space is the least she can do to make their lives a little easier, perhaps a little happier. Spend a day doing whatever is asked of you and leave with a happy heart and many friends.

Genevieve Chatel
February 19th 2012 07:13:27 AM

Where are you from?
Orefield pa
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I love to work with Sassy! Thank you to the Gress Mountain Ranch!

Kim McDougall
February 19th 2012 07:11:02 AM

Website: Between the Cracks Fiction, Fantasy Fiction
How did you hear about TGMR?
Where are you from?
Orefield, PA
Please enter your comments
I volunteer at TGMR 2-3 times a week. It is a wonderful haven for animals and people. Anyone interested in volunteering in our community should check out TGMR.


submitted on February 19, 2012 7:10 PM EST

Name: Robert Durfey

Comments:Had a wonderful visit Saturday with Tyler and Belinda, looking for a Boy Scout Eagle project. What a wonderful place and even more wonderful people to dedicate such time to animals.


submitted on February 6, 2012 4:09 PM EST

Name: Elizabeth S.

Comments: I’ve been volunteering at TGMR since November and have always had a wonderful time working with Kathryn and all the animals. The ranch is such a beautiful, happy place and you can really see that reflected in all of the animals. I’ve had new and very interesting experiences while volunteering and have found the my time there completely invaluable. I always look forward to getting a lot of animal kisses!


submitted on December 20, 2011 8:58 AM EST

Name:Tina Marie Nagle

Comments: My younger daughter Samantha and I participated in the surprise St Thomas More Church Nativity “procession of the animals” this past Sunday morning. As the animals entered the church to process down the center aisle, I could see the joy on the faces (young & old) of the parishioners. It was truly an up-lifting experience to watch/hear reactions as Monsignor Murphy introduced each creature, relating the animals to the Nativity. The church was filled with happiness, joy, excitement and peace. Long-live God’s creatures!


submitted on December 7, 2011 11:49 AM EST

Name: Jessica

Comments: Our organization has been volunteering at the Gress Mountain Ranch for over 2 years. Kathryn has always been extremely accomodating to us and the needs of our consumers. I would recommend the Gress Mountain Ranch for anyone who loves to be around animals and is looking to be in a great, caring environment.


submitted on December 3, 2011 4:28 PM EST

Name: chelsea

Comments: I think it is really helpful. It helps me think straight.I love all the animals at gress mountain ranch.I like ben and kathryn.


submitted on November 22, 2011 4:49 PM EST

Name: Pam Wakabayashi


It has been a blessing for me to volunteer at the ranch. I wish I hadn’t waited so long! Kathryn is a truly remarkable person and the beautiful animals are so blessed to be on the ranch and in her genuine kindness and caring hands. I feel such peace when I am there and privileged to be a small part of the lives of such magnificent creatures. Thank you for the opportunity, thank you for all you do at the ranch.


submitted on November 22, 2011 12:19 PM EST

Name: Allie and Alan from Via of the Lehigh Valley


Via of the Lehigh Valley is an agency that helps adults with special needs adapt and get involved in their communities. Gress Mountain Ranch was recommended as a volunteer site for some of our consumers. Gress Mountain is definitely a hit with our consumers and they look forward to coming here to help out. The ranch is full of fun and loving animals that leave you with stories to tell friends and family. Staff at the ranch is extremely helpful and willing to find any job that fits into our consumers’ goals and interests. Gress Mountain Ranch is a wonderful place to volunteer due to its kind staff and cool animals. I would recommend this site to anyone who is looking for a place where you are not only helping animals, they help to put a smile on your face too!


submitted on November 20, 2011 6:03 PM EST

Name: Jen Weinstein


I love volunteering at The Gress Mountain Ranch… I need the animals as much as they need volunteers. Working with Le Roy Piggy and the ducks, turkeys, Nataliee really help me take the focus off of my concerns – The Ranch is such an amazing place. Kathryn is very supportive and is helping me cope with some difficult family “grief” issues.


submitted on October 20, 2011 6:19 PM EST

Name: Tammy Biehl

Comments: I had the privilege of helping at TGMR and can’t stop thinking about the love and care each animal gets from Kathryn, Ben and all the volunteers. I look forward to my next visit.


submitted on October 18, 2011 10:58 AM EST

Name: Lizzie Brinn

Comments: Kathy, It’s Lizzie, brenda’s daughter. I was on your site trying to figure out how to post a testimonial reflection of my visit, but didn’t know where to post it. I figured I would just email it to you and you can post it wherever you choose. I recently visited the Gress Mountain Ranch while I was in Pennsylvania for the weekend. I had heard about it through family and friends, and it seemed like it would be “my” mind of place. It turns out, it was. When I arrived at the ranch I was overcome by the sense of serenity and calmness that exists there–it’s a working ranch, yet the atmosphere was so peaceful. The views are spectacular and it made me feel very much at one with my surroundings. Volunteers worked tirelessly and happily while I was there. They tended to the animals, cleaned stalls, pens and cages. They knew the animals’ temperaments and personalities and really strived to make sure the animals were taken care of. Kathy led me around the ranch and explained the story of each animal. The animals come from all different backgrounds of neglect, abuse, mistreatment and hardship. Even so, the animals were all extremely trusting and sweet, especially toward Kathy. I believe they truly recognize her heart is with them and she is a beyond kind human being. I loved my visit to the ranch and I have been telling as many people about it as I possibly can. I wish there were more people like Kathy in the world who would devote their lives – emotionally, mentally and physically – to the welfare of animals. It was truly a unique experience and I would recommend it 1,000 times! I hope this is okay, Kathy. You really impressed me! And changed a part of my life 🙂 With love and admiration. Lizzie


submitted on June 21, 2011 12:40 PM EST


Comments: Overall Experience 5***** Makes my day. No matter what type of day one is having working at the ranch is very uplifting. The animals are our earthly charges and we are to take care and not abuse them. Kathryn and Ben Gress have devoted their lives to helping animals and animals helping people. What a noble cause. It is not a play date but a dedication to helping the Gress’ continue their worhwhile effort. You will received more than you are giving. So forget your troubles by giving your time and talents at the Gress Mtn. Ranch posted by merkelsy on June 3, 2009


submitted on June 5, 2011 7:15 PM EST

Name: Tena Rapp


Thank you for coming to our church today and bringing along some of your animal friends. It’s wonderful what you and your husband are doing. Helen, my daughter (soon to be 10) and I would like to help out with some of your duties. Let me know if you could use us.


submitted on April 9, 2011 9:08 AM EST

Name: Alexa Kline

Comments: i cant go a day without missing it here at Gress Mountain Ranch!!! thanks for making this place so SPECIAL!!!:) there is always so much to do, and i love to help do it!!!! i LOVE all the animals at Gress. i came to Gress as a horseback rider so i only really knew about horses and dogs . i only have been there for about a month and i leaned sooooo much all from Kathy and Mia!!!! 🙂 this is my favorite place to be !! so far my 2 favorite animals have been Sassy (horse) and Target (goat) but i LOVE them all!


submitted on March 16, 2011 12:05 PM EST


Comments: Kathryn, my husband and I came to offer help because of seeing your story in the MCall. We totally enjoyed helping but I rec’d much more in return. My life long pain disappeared the two hours we were there. I related to the plow horse and he related to me. He moved his head as we were leaving and touched my cheek, like saying, keep the faith. I’ll never forget that. He seemed to sense my pain also.


submitted on February 23, 2011 8:40 AM EST

Name: JoAnn Eberle

Comments: I truly enjoyed my volunteering experience at the ranch this winter. Learned lots about all of the different farm animals. I will treasure the time spent there. Hopefully more volunteers searching for a “special” purpose will come knocking on the barn doors!!


submitted on January 21, 2011 10:02 PM EST

Name: Geraldine Liguori

Comments: If I can get a ride from Allentown, I would like to donate my services in any way needed. Cell is 646-744-7501. I am retired (age 58) but very spry. I relocated to PA from NY and I do not drive. So, if I can hitch a ride from an Allentown volunteer, I will split the transportation costs. Thanks.


submitted on January 19, 2011 12:05 AM EST

Name: Kayla Escobedo

Comments: kayla escobedo my favorite animal is the alpaca and donkey i am in 8th grade and go to springhouse middle school i help with alot of events i came here wanting to learn about how to run a ranch like kathy kathy is letting me assist in medical care syco is my favorite cat i cheerlead for north parkland i have been coming here for 8 months i organize/clean the office and barn i am teaching kathy how to use their cell phones i plan on staying and voulenteering here untill i finish high school and hopefully longer i am trying to teach pearl tricks i know how to clip and groom some of the animals me and mia are friends very patient with elle and i tend to go crazy with applesauce i helped with leroy piggy hypothermia crises i do computer work jewlia is going to teach me how to ride sassy i enjoy drawing. i love the gress mountain ranch:)

submitted on December 9, 2010 11:57 AM EST

Name: Mary Seydl


I am so glad that you have the ranch and I mean Mrs. Kathy. I am so glad that i got to meet you and meet the animals. I still think about the animals all the time and thank you again for having me at the ranch. It was one amazing experience that i will never forget ever. The ranch is a wonderful place with lots of amazing animals who are loving and cute.The ranch was the most wonderful place I have ever been to. I will always love the animals and care about them. Thank you Mrs.Kathy for having me there.


submitted on December 7, 2010 12:55 PM EST

Name: Jennifer Smith


Thank you so much for inviting me to the ranch to meet all the wonderful animals you have given a home to. I really enjoyed my experience helping you on the ranch to feed all the animals. Thank you for all the hard work that you do for the animals in need.


submitted on October 17, 2010 9:27 PM EST

Name: Candi Cain-Borgman

Comments: Today was a tremendous pleasure. Thank you for inviting me and thank you for all the work you do!


submitted on September 22, 2010 1:44 PM EST

Name: Amy Lawler

Comments: Wow, this is such an amazing thing you are doing! I stumbled upon your website through my facebook travels. I am a big fan of Jesse Gress the musician and have a feeling there is a connection:) This would be “my dream project” if I had the acreage, knowledge and time. I am interested in donating but I live in MI so probably not able to help much with volunteer activities. I have many relatives in PA, so may stop in when passing through. Thank you for your Compassion and vision.


submitted on September 16, 2010 8:56 PM EST

Name: Susan Hartman

Comments: Thank you for allowing me and the other Day of Caring volunteers join you for the day on your beautiful ranch. It was an honor to help with the day’s projects. I will definitely be in touch about volunteering on a regular basis.


submitted on July 21, 2010 5:45 PM EST

Name: Bobbie Jo Olio Neubern


Thank you for allowing me to volunteer today. I really enjoyed my time with you, your animals, and other volunteers. The love, care and attention you put into your work is evident! It is truly an amazing thing that you do. Thank you again! Bobbie Jo


submitted on July 10, 2010 1:11 AM EST

Name: Mary Seydl

Comments: I really enjoyed working on the ranch. I learned alot from Mrs. Kathy. I loved being around the animals and feeding them to. I would like to thank Mrs. Kathy for what she has tought me.


submitted on June 27, 2010 12:43 AM EST

Name: andy gress

Comments: Like what your doing


submitted on June 4, 2010 12:33 PM EST

Name: Alaina Muller

Comments: Hi Mr. and MRs. Gress and all the animals!!!! i wanted to thank you for all youve done for the troop and me! I had A LOT of fun working with you an all your special animals, and doing enviormental work around the ranch. You were very helpful and taught me a lot about the animals an how to care for them, and what the ranch does. I was glad i has the chance to work with you. I hope to talk an work with you in the future, wether it would be with girls scouts or helping with anything else! Thanks again for all your help and everything youve taught me:) -Alaina:)


submitted on May 6, 2010 6:45 PM EST

Name: Nick Allen

Comments: Hey i might volunteer!


submitted on April 23, 2010 7:42 PM EST

Name: Priscilla Bejaran

Comments: First and foremost, I’d like to thank Kathryn Gress, and her husband, Ben, and the other volunteers there for giving us the opportunity to volunteer and give our helping hands where it was needed. We had a great time at The Gress Mountain Ranch. THere we did a variety of things like planted flowers, helped fertilize the pasture for the horses and donkeys to graze, and even put lotion on LeRoy and Pearl their two potbelly pigs! It was a first time for me to be near such a variety of animals. Some of the animals there were exotic, to which I had ony seen at the zoo or on television. It was a great experience to be there and see the peacefulness that the animals and the environment had to offer, plus I got to learn something new. Even though I wasn’t there for therapy, Rocky definitely made me feel welcome. I am glad we got the chance to give back to them because they really needed it. Now, there were other aspects of the ranch that I didn’t get to explore for safety purposes(being 7 1/2 months pregnant),but Travis and a few others were involved more in those areas and he can further elaborate on them. Travis help me out..


submitted on April 23, 2010 1:30 PM EST

Name: travis wright


thank you for showing me a new sceenary and giving me a chance to do somthing outside of my normal routine i just want to send my blessings and keep holding on cause its gone be alright


submitted on April 11, 2010 10:55 AM EST

Name: audrey beers

Comments: Love your place n find great peace in the animals.


submitted on April 8, 2010 7:17 AM EST

Name: Dawn Gress

Comments: I think its awesome what you do,by the way are you any relation to Robert J Gress ?


submitted on February 28, 2010 12:20 AM EST

Name: Michael Roberts

Comments: I am a 20year old welder from Kuhnsville Pa. I decided to volunteer at The Gress Mountain Ranch after being temporarily laid off from my welding job. I’ve been an avid animal lover my whole life, and my experience at Gress has been one of the most rewarding things I’ve ever done. it has even helped me to realize and pursue my true calling, as I am currently enrolled in an online associate’s degree program at Penn Foster College in veterinarn technology. I’ve developed a strong bond with the animals at Gress and they’ve changed my life for the better. I would recommend volunteering at Gress to anyone who wants a truly meaningful and rewarding volunteering experience.


submitted on February 26, 2010 10:09 PM EST

Name: Jackie Bittle

Comments: I am president of helping paws at millersville university. We went to the ranch on February 13th 2010. We were welcomed warmly and were able to work with the animals hands on. All the animals were very friendly and we all enjoyed ourselves. I’m sure we will go back and help again. But if you would like to help volunteer, I know they could use the help and all the animals are very sweet. Please help them out, they would appreciated it. Thanks Gress Mountain Ranch from Helping Paws at Millersville University


submitted on February 24, 2010 12:28 AM EST

Name: Carolyn

Comments: Your organization is wonderful and you do a great service for animals in need!


submitted on February 23, 2010 4:20 PM EST

Name: Molly Horlacher

Comments: I have been volunteering here at the Gress Mountain Ranch for almost 4 years now and I have experienced nothing but hapiness. The animals get great care. They have 15 acres of land and get wonderful care and attention from many other volunteers. All of the animals are very friendly and are more then happy to live here. Volunteering at the Gress Mountain Ranch has taught me so much about animal care and has been one of the best experiences of my life.


submitted on November 23, 2009 11:30 PM EST

Name: Hau

Comments: I am an 18year old college student, currently attending Kutztown University for the fall. I will be going to Moravian College where I hope to graduate with a Nursing Degree in order to be a MedVac Pilot. While at The Gress Mountain Ranch, I enjoy meeting all the animals and learning from them. It’s a good way to see all the work that goes into caring for the animals. I believe it’s a great experience for people of any age to give back to the community and also gain alot of “heart.” It’s a great work out, physically,”you don’t need to go to the gym, Just go to TGMR”!


submitted on November 16, 2009 12:05 AM EST

Name: JoEllen

Comments: Joellen-Animal loving 16yr old. I enjoy feeding the animals, like our older horse, Ellie, goat Samson, our alpacas Bondy and our donkey Cecely. I didn’t expect to have as much fun as I am doing….this community service at The Gress Mountian Ranch, but I’m grateful to have this experience with all the animals. JoEllen & Stephanie..


submitted on October 19, 2009 1:15 AM EST

Name: Sharon Ruhf

Comments: Last year when the crowd left, I petted Elle and told her I loved her. She hugged me, God love her. Couldn’t get there this year to see her but I remember all of them every day.


submitted on October 14, 2009 2:01 PM EST

Name: Lindsey Calhoun

Comments: I love coming out to the farm and i’m looking forward to the open gate farm tour on the 18th i hope i can help out the ranch with my massages and raise much need funds for you guys as well!! bless you all!


submitted on August 29, 2009 11:06 PM EST

Name: Mia and Dante

Comments: We like helping Miss Kathryn will all the animals….Feeding Andrew, the turkeys & ducks, the piggies, and even cleaning up the piggy poopy. We are very glad there is a special place for people & animals at The Gress Moutain Ranch, in Orefield, Pa. Thanks for having us volunteer at young ages, 6 & 10years. We love all the animals, and you both treat us very “special.” Thanks for having the ranch so we can come and help the animals & you!


submitted on August 24, 2009 7:46 AM EST

Name: Jessica Oscavich

Comments: My mom and I volunteered at the ranch over the summer and found it to be a very rewarding experience. I’m using the time towards my community service for Liberty High School. My role was to help out with feeding the animals and cleaning their stalls/pens/pastures. What I leared through this project is that helping the community out can be fun while being hard work at the same time. I grew personally from my experience by learning how rewarding it is to help people/animals in need. I would recommend this agency to others because if you really want to work with animals, it’s a great way to be up close with them and take care of them. I learned alot from Kathry and love all the animals there.


submitted on May 28, 2009 5:33 PM EST

Name: cheryl mccalmon

Comments: hoe lovely !


submitted on May 26, 2009 1:52 PM EST

Name: Tracy Blizniak

Comments: Love what you and your volunteers are doing for the animals as well as people. I am going to sign up to volunteer.


submitted on May 15, 2009 12:50 PM EST

Name: Melissa Bachert

Comments: I have been working at the Gress Mountain Ranch for a week and I absolutely love it there. The animals are great. Very well trained. It has been such an awesome experience for me so far and I am excited to keep working with the animals.


submitted on April 12, 2009 10:24 AM EST

Name: Logan Carrigan

Comments: Found the ranch from the community service office at Liberty High School and have received many hours from Kathy and Ben. It’s a lot of fun at the ranch and I suggest to anyone who loves animals and the outdoors. There’s always something to do at the ranch and your help is always appreciated. You won’t find nicer people then Kathy and Ben. Thanks guys so much for letting me help you out and Happy Easter!


submitted on April 10, 2009 2:41 PM EST

Name: Barb Joseph

Comments: I have been a volunteer once a week for approximately five weeks. Kathryn and Ben have opened their hearts and home and dedicated themselves to the care of these wonderful animals. My work at the ranch is far different from any type of work I have done before. I find it challenging (herding the pigs into their stable, for example), and Kathryn and Ben have shown great patience with my inexperience. Each week I learn something new about the animals in general and get better acquainted with the animals individually. I have found this experience to be emotionally rewarding, educational and fun. I highly recommend it.


submitted on March 25, 2009 8:36 AM EST

Name: charlotte tatu

Comments: just viewed the pbs special about your ranch, im much interested in volunteering my time to help in any way you might need me


submitted on February 26, 2009 12:31 PM EST

Name: Bill Hughes

Comments: Since my graduation in January 2009 I have enjoyed volunteering, especially with the horses. Ellie the Belgium draft horse is a real charmer.

submitted on December 9, 2008 10:01 AM EST

Name: Sylvia J. Merkel

Comments: I recently found out about Gress Mountain Ranch thru the Morning Call. This place is wonderful. I believe in their mission to help our dear helpless animals. If some one wants to have a great day and an emotional lift, stop by at Gress Mountain Ranch and meet all the wonderful guest at the ranch. This is a place where no one grumbles except maybe our pot belly pigs( LeRoy and Pearl) oh they are so cute. The view is gorgeous, air is fresh and if you want you can get some exercise while helping in this wonderful cause. Any help would be appreciated from repairing fencing, building a shelter shed to dropping off a bag of apples, oranges and applesauce for their meds. They have a wonderful web site explaning their cause and how you can help.


submitted on October 7, 2008 7:56 PM EST

Name: Kelsey Hopton

Comments: I am a student in the Veterinary Technician (NURSE!) Program at Northampton Community College, and for a paper we were to shadow a place that cared for animals and write our experience. A fellow Vet Tech student and I found GMR on the Vet Tech bulletin board and came out this week. We both worked hands on and went step-by-step with Kathryn & Ben and experienced how hard they work every single day to make sure that each and every animal is taken care of. It is a tough job!! I have so much respect for both of them, and admire Kathryn so much for her loyalty, dedication, compassion, and ultimate LOVE of each animal that she has ever dealt with, not just the ones in her care at the moment. She talks of her late pets as you would hear someone speak of their children or family member-because, she cares for them as if they were. It’s an amazing place to go, for many more reasons than the animals themselves. To see two people care so much is a rare and wonderful thing. Thanks so much Kathryn & Ben! I’ll be talking to you & most likely seeing you soon! 🙂


submitted on August 26, 2008 7:03 PM EST

Name: Larines Rodriguez

Comments: I’m a volunteer at the ranch. I’m 17 years old and a senior at Willam Allen High school and I’m doing my graduation project here. So far its going great, in the begining its hard because you’re getting used to it and the routine that goes with it. But I love it, because I’m learning and I’m getting hands on experience with the animals and just beign outside, the veiw is amazin, when you stop and stare. If you ever get a chance to visit the ranch you will love it, it’s quiet except feeding time and when Rocky and Kala bark. For me going to the ranch is a relaxing, because when I’m grooming the animals or walking, it just makes me think and I get relax and I love feeling that way.


submitted on August 4, 2008 5:40 PM EST

Name: Kerri Kelly

Comments: You are doing such good work. Helping the disabled and caring for helpless animals is a wonderful thing to do. If only there were more angels like you in this world….!!


submitted on July 18, 2008 3:59 PM EST

Name: Kiran

Comments: Working at the Gress Mountain Ranch is very relaxing, fun, amazing, and just overall great. You get to work with El Pacas, pigs, horses, goats, and more. It is so great working with the animals because the animals themselves radiate happiness, and you can’t help but be infected by their joy. There is still work to be done at the ranch, but the rewards are so much greater and the work is so much fun that it doesn’t feel like work at all. In addition, when you are at the ranch, you can forget about yourself and just spend time with the animals. You can just be yourself. Certainly, I wasn’t judged or anything like that; the animals as well the owners are kind and will take you as you are. For example, the first time I volunteered, I was really nervous about the ranch, but when I got there Kathryn was really nice and made me feel welcome. I knew from then on that I would go back to the Gress Mountain Ranch again and again. The Gress Mountain Ranch is really an amazing place. Working with the animals is really nice. It is really a great feeling, knowing that I am actually helping the animals. I know that I will always value this experience, and that I will never forget the animals on the ranch.


submitted on June 27, 2008 10:56 PM EST

Name: Jackie and Brittany

Comments: We recently went to Gress to volunteer, and it was an amazing experience. We have been looking for a place to get involved and this was perfect. Brittany got spat on my Andrew the Alpaca, and we got to lotion piggies, what more could you ask for in a perfect day on the ranch? We are REALLY looking forward to going back soon!!! The experience was one that has made our week, and volunteering at Gress will make our summer incredible.


submitted on June 14, 2008 3:48 PM EST

Name: Julia

Comments: Gress Mountain Ranch is one of the best experiences I’ve had in a long time. The animals are so happy, which makes me happy to see them. It’s such a great feelng, knowing that by helping the animals, the animals will help people. Serisouly, who wouldn’t love a goat named Sampson?


submitted on June 13, 2008 12:42 PM EST

Name: Dustin & Barb McCullough

Comments: Dustin wanted to do some community service, we have always worked with cat and dog rescue, we wanted to try farming, It was the GREATEST experience we have ever had, especially when Kathryn when she asked if we wanted to lotion the pigs, Pearl&Leroy, we looked at each other and said oh well. we laughed so hard. Ben & Kathryn take such great care of these animals they roam free and the goats are a pip. like 2 year olds. We did more pooping scooping, but the rewards of feeding and just getting to know the animals was worth its weight in gold (or shall i say poo) these animals and people need all the help they can get they have horses that need some meds that cost alot. It is not cheap to run a organization like this one with only 2 people. I f anyone can find it in there hearts to throw on some old shoes and help out or if you are a better organizer, try to raise money for Gress Mountain Ranch,especially children they have many resourses. Please go visit the ranch one time and like Dustin and I you will fall in love with the owners and all the animals……I PROMISE God BLess all that help those whom can not help themselves, they rely on us…


submitted on March 17, 2008 11:45 AM EST

Name: Benay Mugmon

Comments: I’m a volunteer with the Long Beach Humane Society and I heard from a friend what wonderful work you do and I wish to commend you.


submitted on February 5, 2008 3:34 PM EST

Name: Carol Acheson

Comments: My husband and I are animal lovers and appreciate what you are doing. Thank you for your work.


submitted on December 25, 2007 7:57 AM EST

Name: Wanda Church

Comments: I would like my daughter be involved in volunteer work. Kyatie loves working with animals. until 2 years ago we were involved in labs4rescue, and fostered las until adoption. we then adopted one and no longer fostered. The dogs just bonded and responded to her. I do not want her involved with a shelter, but she wants to help animals again. I will be contacting you after the holidays for volunteer help.


submitted on December 4, 2007 8:47 AM EST

Name: Susan Ross

Comments: I wanted to thank you for my recent volunteering experience at the ranch.. After one hour on the pasture I had the same feeling as I do after a yoga session – muscles warm and pleasantly tired, my mind relaxed and calm and my spirit renewed. I left smiling and kept that happy feeling all day!


submitted on November 26, 2007 10:47 AM EST

Name: Bob Havrilla

Comments: Hi, Kathy and Ben. Thank you for the enjoyable day last Saturday at your ranch. You always make me feel welcome, and it’s a pleasure to help you take care of the animals. Regards, Bob Havrilla


submitted on November 1, 2007 7:19 PM EST

Name: ken kalinoski

Comments: yo… found your site. I looks very cool!! Bravo… Go Kathy!


submitted on October 19, 2007 7:50 AM EST

Name: Ann Snyder

Comments: My husband, daughter, and I would like to commend you on the outstanding work you do! Upon visiting your ranch we were welcomed by such curious, kind, and loving animals. It is very obvious that your animals are very, very happy and we absolutely loved being able to help feed them and spend time with them!


submitted on October 16, 2007 12:48 PM EST

Name: Kathy Yankowy

Comments: I attended a volunteer orientation this past Sunday. I spent approximately 4 1/2 hours working with the animals and cleaning the farm. While ‘lotioning the pigs’ I mentioned to Kathy I can see how this work is so beneficial as therapy – in the time I was on the farm I never once thought of myself, my “to-do list”, my personal issues, etc. It is simply about helping the animals.It takes the focus off ourselves and opens us to the peace and happiness that comes from helping others.


submitted on October 8, 2007 8:59 AM EST

Name: David Braun

Comments: Ms. Kathryn, I think you are doing a wonderful job helping the animals. I got to know you through David Steffey and I really think your programs are working great. Thank you for all you are doing to help people.


submitted on September 16, 2007 2:16 PM EST

Name: Tammy

Comments: I think that it is wonderful that you are helping animals and people. I logged on to vote for Max, but discovered so much more! Keep up the wonderful work!


submitted on September 11, 2007 3:39 PM EST

Name: mason castro

Comments: I enjoy comming up to help with the animals, and it may be alot of work but its fun and exciting to see how diffrernt animals can be. It some times is a challenge to keep up with the work, but it will help in future experiances and jobs. Thank you Mr. and Mrs. Gress for this oppurtunity.


submitted on August 27, 2007 8:23 AM EST

Name: Marilyn Baker

Comments: I thoroughly enjoyed my visit Saturday to the ranch. Yes, it was a lot of work, but the animals are so worthy of care and attention, and your dedication is inspiring. A special thanks to you and Ben for taking time out of your Saturday afternoon for me. I learned a lot and will definitely spread the word about the fine work you are doing.


submitted on August 16, 2007 4:58 PM EST


Comments: Eileen asked me to vote… I did, I sure hope you win! Susan


submitted on June 29, 2007 8:12 PM EST

Name: Linda Condon

Comments: The Gress Mountain Ranch does amazing work!


submitted on June 28, 2007 9:57 PM EST

Name: Bev

Comments: Kathy, I voted for Max…I work for Omaha Vaccine Company..Thanks for letting me know of your site..I will visit it often..thanks again.. Bev


submitted on June 26, 2007 10:46 AM EST

Name: Kaitlyn K.

Comments: The “therapy animals”, Rocky,Kayla, Pearl &LeRoy Piggy,Cotton,Rascal& Randy, Max, the kitten, help me do good in the classroom, help me calm down in school. They are my friends!


submitted on May 3, 2007 4:59 PM EST

Name: Terri Wertz

Comments: It seems like a very great place. I always care for the people who loves Gods critters. I would love to visit sometime.


submitted on March 26, 2007 4:25 PM EST

Name: Betsy Scott

Comments: Kathryn and Ben you and all of your animals do some great things. I loved your website and will visit often. I appreciate your kindness when I came to visit your beautiful ranch.


submitted on March 20, 2007 3:38 PM EST

Name: Beverly A. Burns

Comments: I have had a vision very similar to yours. It really touched me when I heard about what you are doing for God’s creatures! I will pray that God will provide all that you need to accomplish your mission. Also, I hope that I can help soon. I am presently un-employed, but I will continue to stay in touch with your website and see what I could do.


submitted on March 4, 2007 5:50 PM EST

Name: Timothy Nagle


Thanx, For all you do.It dose make a difference.


submitted on March 3, 2007 7:47 PM EST

Name: Erin Msdison

Comments: going to the ranch with my girl scout troop was so much fun! we all really want to go back againal! i cant wait. all the animals are so cute and sweet


submitted on February 14, 2007 12:54 PM EST

Name: Candice Vandever

Comments: I love your cause. I mean I enjoy that people do this kind of stuff, and I’m only 14 going on 15. I have experience with many different kinds of animals and I sure would like to volunteer there. It seems that the ranch is one of the many places that are able to give there heart to therapudic animals and people. Thanks so much for helping others. I at least know that there are people like that in the world.


submitted on February 6, 2007 2:13 PM EST

Name: Ellen Madison

Comments: Love the photos.Lot of hard work but what a noble cause.I applaud you.


submitted on February 5, 2007 6:42 PM EST

Name: Blair

Email Address:

Comments: Hi Ms.Kathyrn!!!!!


submitted on February 4, 2007 6:15 PM EST

Name: Jasmine Boyer

Comments: I hope that i get 2 see all the animals again!!


submitted on January 6, 2007 10:43 PM EST

Name: Linda, Tina & Deidre

Comments: Your website is great. I feel terrible that the girls and I have not been up to the ranch in over a year. Hopefully things will improve here and we can get up to help out again. We miss all of you.


submitted on December 28, 2006 1:35 PM EST

Name: Megan Watkins

Comments: i would like to volunteer but i’m also looking for a full time job and i am my only means of support so it’s up in the air as to what times i’m available.


submitted on December 23, 2006 11:07 PM EST

Name: Tina Horowitz

Comments: Would you please add me to your mailing list if you have one? Thanks!


submitted on December 22, 2006 6:03 PM EST

Name: Dorothy M. Digilio

Comments: Thank God For People Like You!!!!! I can’t do much but I will donate. Thanks again!


submitted on December 21, 2006 8:18 PM EST

Name: Naiesha Mendes

Comments: I would like to meet the different animlas you have at your ranch. I saw Rocky and i would like to meet him. My mom told me about him.I also saw Sundance. I would like to ride him/her. Sincerly, Naiesha Mendes


submitted on December 12, 2006 9:02 AM EST

Name: glenn godshall

Comments: Hello! Learned of your ranch from KU’s University Relations office as they are doing a story on you for our TOWER magazine. Good mission! Please keep up the good work. Hope to visit you soon. Glenn Godshall ’75 & ’90 Director of Alumni Relations Kutztown University


submitted on October 17, 2006 8:13 AM EST

Name: Donna Bachik

Comments: My family and I had an opportunity to visit your place during the Open Gate Farm Tour. I was moved and inspired by your devotion to animals and people. My experiece during our visit left me with an unforgettable memory of someone sharing their passion and love for animals with both animals and people in need. Thank you for allowing others to interact with your beautiful, precious animals while learning about your facility and your mission.


submitted on September 25, 2006 5:34 PM EST

Name: Loretta Brobst

Comments: I enjoyed seeing Avery on the web site. Keep up the good work Avery. See you all on October 15.


submitted on August 22, 2006 11:22 AM EST

Name: Eileen und Silke

Comments: Greetings fom Germany!!! Eileen + Silke


submitted on July 10, 2006 8:42 PM EST

Name: Christy Hawkins

Comments: Hi everyone, I was one of Dr. Weaver’s students and I can not thank you all enough for such a special afternoon. It was a blessing to be at the Ranch and I hopr to be able to see you all again. Best wishes always!


submitted on July 3, 2006 5:32 PM EST

Name: Cynthia J. Weaver

Comments: Appreciate the time spent in having my students from Marywood School of Social Work view an Animal Assisted Therapy program in action.


submitted on June 28, 2006 12:10 PM EST

Name: Kristen Kehs, Stuck-On Farm Dairy Goats

Comments: I hope Rascal and Randy bring lots of joy to everyones lives.


submitted on June 19, 2006 9:03 PM EST

Name: Jessica Iezzi

Comments: All the animals helped me with my problems because when i see rocky he always makes me smile and Pearl Piggy helped me because i dont always listen to the staff at school and when i take pearl for a walk with Mrs.kathryn she showed me that when she gives me piggy attitude i dont like it and now i know how the teachers feel.


submitted on June 7, 2006 7:21 AM EST

Name: lLoretta Brobst


Kathy Very new at this some how I lost your email Wnted to tell you again your web site is great. Iam telling people about it all the time Love to all of you


submitted on May 22, 2006 9:17 AM EST

Name: Frances Wilson

Comments: sounds like a nice place. I don’t have any costumes right now, but I will be sure to send them to you when I get them. I usually make up my own for my animals. Knuckles the smallest pig I own is in I would say a med dogs costume. I find that they work pretty good. I aslo have used costumes from Halloween that the kids grew out of. Of course the simpler the better. I haave converted a lambs costume for a baby into a pig costume, by cutting it up the belly and sewing velcro straps onto it to close it. I hope these ideas can help. Sincerely an animal lover, Fran Wilson


submitted on April 21, 2006 1:49 PM EST

Name: LeeAnn Cressman

Comments: I love to go to the fram I can be myslef there the anamils dont care how you are dressed or what you look like they just love you for being you and feed them and shoing them love and they give the love right back to you I just love being at the fram it is so much fun and relaxing to Volunter and find outfor yourslef