Somehow in conversation with Thom & Melodie and a phone call with Everett Wray, we got a time lined up to tour a Hutterite Colony just 20 minutes away from where we were in Boardman.
We spent about 2 hours with Ed Stahl. First he showed us their mammoth 200 x 300' shop. Inside a girl, engaged to be married, was sanding several headboards, one for the bedroom suite in her new home. We left the carpentry section of the shop and entered the machine area. Most of the men were out cultivating potatoes, as was the equipment, but we did look at 2 potato harvesters...interesting pieces of machinery! There was even a mini street sweeper in the mechanic shop. We stopped through the meeting room, where Ed offered us cookies, then he showed us the computer room that controls all their field irrigation systems that are on the 4 square mile plot that they own.
|sign at the entrance of a 2 mile lane|
|one side of the street: 12 apartment homes|
|other side of the street: kitchen/dining/laundry|
|Annie, Shannon, Ed|
Next we walked across the gravel lot to the kitchen. Ed's daughter & daughter-in-law were preparing supper for the colony. They were making a creamy carrot soup for the young children under age 5. The mothers feed them before everyone else eats. The rest of the colony were having stir fry. Adjoining the kitchen was the dining area...men on one side, women on the other. Across the kitchen was the meal room for the school age children and a married couple chaperone.
|stir fry prep|
|salad for the next day|
Off of the kitchen was a walk-in pantry mostly for spices. Next to that was a baking room with a walk-in commercial oven for proofing bread on rolling racks with trays and the baking oven that holds the whole rack, picks it up, & rotates the loaves. At the back of the building was a large room set up for butchering animals. The next day they were planning to process ducks raised on their property. A laundry room with a long line of washers & dryers was the last room we walked through. Everything was very bright, neat, and clean.
Caroline and Cora went out to the playground with a few little girls that had been playing in the dining hall. The rest of us looked in the church and inside Ed's house. His wife was home and her sister who was visiting from Canada. They have a kitchen in their apartments as well for snacks or coffee, etc. I think there were 3 bedrooms, a living room, and bathroom. She also sewed upstairs.
|hurray, another playground! with playmates too!|
There is also a school building, we didn't look in, because it was locked since the school day was over. Ed said they have a hired teacher from outside the colony for now. He walked us to the RV helping carry some food they sent with us: 2 loaves of bread, 2 dozen eggs, a bag of cookies, radishes from the garden, and carrot soup.
|the shop is out of this picture, on the left|
|big line of sweet Petes|
|Riley checking out the bulk potato unloader|
While chatting with them, we noticed the Hutterite ladies' twisted hair. Annie and Caroline tried their hand at rolling it back into a scarf.
|my sweet girls|