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We're always looking for wagons for people to use when they go to our pumpkin patch - feel free to drop off your old or un-used wagons at the orchard!

We're also happy to take any picnic tables you're getting rid of - even if it's just the 'bones' of the table.


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N1959 Kroncke Road
Poynette, WI 53955

Take Hwy 51 North from Madison, go straight onto Hwy 22, turn east (right) onto Hwy 60 almost immediately. Drive 2 miles and go North (left) onto Kroncke Road. We're just over a mile on the left-hand side.

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(608) 635-4780

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Emus on the Loose

Last week while Jared and Kim and the girls were busy picking up blueberries and getting sidetracked on the way home, Frank and I were having a little adventure of our own. We had received part of this year's blueberries that morning and were over at the Kroncke Rd orchard planting them, when the cell phone rang. "The emus are walking down Bohling Rd." we were told. So we loaded all 3 dogs in the back of the Toyota and took off for home. As we came around the corner onto Bohling Rd, quite a sight met our eyes. (Oh, for a camera when you need one.) There was school bus parked in the middle of the road and a pickup truck and a few cars scattered along both sides. Numerous people were walking with their hands up trying to convince two emus that they wanted to go back home....a quarter of a mile away.

Frank jumped out to help and I slid over to take the truck home and get some gates open. I pulled slowly around the bus where the kids were calling, "Hi, Barney!", to the biggest of the dogs. I inched along the far side of the road from where the emus were, trying not to scare them any more than they already were. The last thing you want is a running emu, since they can run 40 miles an hour. I got around them as Frank organized the volunteers, who included several local kids ranging in age from second grade through high school, as well as adults.

I got home and ordered the dogs to stay in the truck, then went to open the gate to the pen behind the shed where the emus live for the summer and fall. They had been in the barn and barnyard all winter, but I figured this was a good time to move them, since it has a bigger gate and an easier approach from the direction the emus would be coming. Then I had to sit tight and wait for the traveling party to come over the hill.

Finally, Frank called to me and told me where he needed me to help turn Tosh. He had a long stick in each hand and was walking her slowly down behind the hay barn up on the hill. The emus are used to Frank since he's the one who brings them food and water every day, so he kept talking to Tosh and when she wanted to turn in a direction he didn't like, he'd lightly tap her on the neck with one of the sticks. He had her almost to the gate when someone up on the hill (the rest of the group was dealing with Mac), called "Frank!". Apparently Mac had decided to run off in the wrong direction. Frank told them to just stand still and wait for him. He didn't want Mac to get running and knew if we got Tosh in, Mac would want to join her.

So he guided Tosh in and I closed the gate and went for a bucket of water, which she was very excited to see. I put it far down into the pen so she would be away from the gate when we needed to open it again. I had just finished when Frank called for me to circle the building and cut off that area as they brought Mac down. A line of about a dozen people came slowly down with Mac in front of them. He spotted his buddy, Tosh, inside the fence and went right up to it. Only problem is the gate was around the corner on the end of the pen. So we all lined up and one of the young people opened the gate. Mac spooked as he was rounding the corner and we thought he was going to head for the hill again, but the youngest helper of all stood his ground and made just enough notion to turn him back.

So both were safely home....and very thirsty. All of the volunteers headed back to their vehicles (still a quarter of a mile away). Frank stopped in the house to check for messages before we headed back to finish our blueberry job. There were 8...two from the Poynette police department..."Your emus are out."..."Your emus are still out." Two from one of our neighbors in the trailer park. That's a quarter of a mile in the OTHER direction (no wonder they were thirsty)..."Your emus are out."..."Your emus are still out." Three more from neighbors..."Your emus are out."

And one from Jared..."We got sidetracked and won't be back until late." If you haven't seen there story yet, check out The Adventures in Blueberries.

So went another day at the orchard.

Thank heavens for great neighbors who are always so willing to help. We do appreciate all of you and who knows where those emus would be now if you hadn't been here when we were busy elsewhere. I wish upon each of you one of those famous Lapacek's Orchard caramel apples. Unfortunately, you'll have to wait until August for the first ones of the season.
If you've never heard the story of how Mac "n" Tosh came to live at the orchard, check out their story. Mac 'n' Tosh And read about the excitement they had this winter. The Lean Comes Down


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