For the past four years it has been the tri-state area’s best kept secret: a place where time stands still, where the outside world melts away and visitors can stop, listen and actually live in the moment.
Yossi and Leah Lowenstein first opened their Jackson Township farm to the public in Chol Hamoed Succos 2018, a fulfillment of their shared dream to create a place that would cater to neurotypical children as well as those with special needs from ages three to 21. Located six miles west of Lakewood, Dr. Suss Stables was home to a variety of animals including horses, goats, ducks, rabbits, chickens and dogs, with ample space for children and families looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Visitors to Dr. Suss found themselves drawn into the farm life, enjoying its wide array of programming, and the farm has undergone a metamorphosis of sorts over the past year, honing in on its core mission of being more than just a petting zoo or a place to go horseback riding. Its new name, Calmin’ Ground, reflects the farm’s true identity as a place where a sense of calm permeates the air, and a destination that brings visitors together by building on the commonalities they share as they interact with each other and the farm’s four-footed residents.
As a sensory farm for all children, Calmin’ Ground is a place where youngsters of all abilities can revel in the comfort of nature while absorbing the rustic environment’s soothing beauty. In addition to enjoying equine skills training, hayrides, riding, grooming, farm work and opportunities to get up close and personal with animals both large and small, Calmin’ Ground also runs school-year clubs and summer programs for boys and girls. Those with special needs can reap tremendous therapeutic rewards from interacting with animals and Calmin’ Ground offers immersive sensory hours which can be booked on its website either privately or in a group setting. During that time, visitors will have an opportunity to work with the animals, groom them, feed them and engage in other farm activities, promoting a sense of tranquility and helping them discover their own abilities.
Seeing children blossom on the farm and witnessing their dream coming to life in a very big way has been exceptionally fulfilling for Yossi and Leah.
“Today’s life is so fast paced and we see how transformative it can be when visitors spend time at Calmin’ Ground,” said Leah. “We feel blessed to be able to bring this experience to the visitors who come here and look forward to welcoming many more in the weeks and months ahead.”
For more information on Calmin’ Ground visit them online at www.calminground.com