Local animal sanctuary holding holiday market Sunday

December 2, 2021   ·   0 Comments

By Sam Odrowski

The Glo Farm Sanctuary is holding a Holiday Market this Sunday (Dec. 5), featuring a variety of seasonal gifts.

The farm, which is located at 61026 CR-3, East Garafraxa, will be running the event from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and attendees will be able to meet some of the 29 rescued animals permanently living there. There will also be free hot coco or apple cider as well as marshmallows for roasting on an open fire.

“The Christmas market is an opportunity for people to come and see the farm. We are not open to the general public, but we do offer limited private tours,” said Ali Valentine, director of the Glo Farm Sanctuary. “When we get into the fall and winter weather, it becomes more difficult to offer those tours, so this is our kind of our one last hurrah to get people to be able to come here and see what we do.”

Tickets to the event are available at: for $15 each and are broken down into one hour time slots to maintain appropriate numbers, allowing for physical distancing.

All of the money raised helps support the animal sanctuary, which is a registered charity and run entirely by volunteers.

“100 per cent of the money goes back into caring for the animals,” noted Valentine.

She said one of the largest expenses they have at the farm is purchasing enough hay to feed everyone, which costs about $850 a month.

There’s also a large focus on preventative health care, which involves doing annual physicals and bloodwork to compare with if any of the animals ever get sick,

“We also do every 30-day health checks on everybody with a veterinarian. We’re very fortunate we have a veterinarian who lives on site, so we do get significant discounts on that that work,” said Valentine. “However, we don’t cut corners when it comes to their health because we’re trying to provide them longevity.”

She told the Citizen the animal sanctuary takes in vulnerable animals from the OPP and SPCA, as well as different agencies throughout southern Ontario. The farm has horses, cows, goats, sheep, chickens, and pigs.

“Where there’s animals who are finding themselves in pretty dire situations, we offer them forever homes here,” Valentine noted.

“When they come to us, they are vulnerable and rely on us to meet all of their needs. So, we have to meet not only their medical needs and their physical needs, but also their social/emotional needs.”

Currently there are over 60 regular volunteers at the Glo Farm Sanctuary and at the market they’ll be able to share some of the stories of where the animals came from.

“Some of the stories are awfully sad, but then when you see how they have kind of learned to trust and grow – it’s a really miraculous thing,” said Valentine.

An interesting aspect of the farm is that there’s a mixed herd, so the smallest pot belly pig is in the same paddock as their large goats, sheep, and cows.

“You get to watch everybody peacefully coexist, and [at the market event] we definitely will talk about how and why that’s able to work,” said Valentine. “A big part of that is how, as humans, the choices we make.”

There are some really unique interspecies friendships at the farm, she noted.

“One of our sheep, Maria is actually an honorary cow,” Valentine told the Citizen. “For sleeping groups, they all get to choose where they want to sleep at night… and Maria will always sleep with the cows, she has for four years, and I suspect she will until the end of time.”

“She’s obsessed with Martin, and she’s never ever far from him,” Valentine added.

For safety reasons, she noted that none of the animals should be fed over the fence, but many of them are social and some will be roaming.

“We do have a flock of chickens led by our fearless rooster Russell Crowe, and he is a worse beggar than any dog you’ll ever meet. I’m sure he’ll be near the bonfire or wherever there’s treats,” Valentine said.

She told the Citizen she’d encourage anyone who loves animals or is looking to do some local holiday shopping to swing by this Sunday.

“You really should come to support the work that we’re doing. It’s really amazing to be able to see what it looks like when animals are given the privilege of growing old,” she noted. “Our cows are both seniors, so Patricia is an 18-year-old Jersey Angus cross and Martin is an 11-year-old Hereford.”

The event is more than 50 per cent sold out and a maximum of 250 people can attend.

For more information about the Glo Farm, visit: or subscribe to their Patreon:

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