Folk Art at Laity Farm

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I’ve been a little short on time for writing lately, so this post refers back to pumpkin time a few weeks ago when the fields were gloriously covered with orange gourds adding a brilliantly warm element to the landscape, and a great counterpoint to the not so distant Coast Mountains.

In Maple Ridge in the farming flats around the Alouette River, one of the pioneer farms was originally settled by the Laity family. They still own and operate it. Over the years, when harvest is in, the Laity Farm celebrates fall with its pumpkin patch and corn maze. It has become quite an attraction for families and for schools. There are lots of activities –  a small forest preceded by Disney like animated characters, a minature frontier town within the forest, a petting zoo,  special farm animals in the barn, a corn maze and of course, a grand pumpkin patch.

If, as Charlie Brown attests, sincerity is what counts in attracting the Great Pumpkin, then Laity must be on the short list. It’s a wonderful place to go.

I was especially interested in their rarish collection of farm birds. There were two kinds of poultry with ruffled feathers covering their talons. There were two male peacocks, a big turkey, several varieties of other exotic fowl – ducks, Guinea hens, a raptor. These were kept in cages in the barn. A few cages had rabbits and some pens out in the open area held a young calf, some goats and two varieties of sheep.

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In the compound garden next to the barn there is a patch filled with fancy cabbages in various purples and pale greens. Just beside this garden, there are some free standing figures cut from plywood. These caught my fancy and I photographed them for your pleasure.

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There’s something rather charming about folk art. It’s not precise. The colours are often very primary – no shading, no mixing, no texture.

So here are some images of the great plywood and painted characters and animals for your enjoyment.

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