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Sweet Retreat is Home to Heritage Ox Farm

Our oxen and wagons are available for appearances at special events or for
pre-arranged ox-drawn cart and sleigh rides at our farm. Please contact us at
802-485-8525 or email


Ray and Hannah Morvan with Ace and Joker

About our Oxen

Joker, Ace, Jack and King, our Brown Swiss show oxen were born in April, 2004 at Shelburne Farms in Shelburne, Vermont located about an hour from the guesthouse. These gentle giants are now over 6 feet tall and weigh between 2500 and 3100 lbs each—we have been told by various judges that they are some of the largest oxen in New England! The oxen are trained as a two- or four-hitch and pull an ox cart, our new authentic reproduction Conestoga Covered Wagon, and a two-seater sleigh. We show them at fairs, parades and special events around New England.

After four years of construction, our Conestoga Covered Wagon was completed by local Vermont craftsmen. The wagon made its maiden voyage at the Roxbury, Vermont, Independence Day Parade on July 2, 2011. Read more about the wagon.

Our granddaughter Analiese Morvan, who also lives in Northfield, keeps her young team of Brown Swiss steers, Doc and Dan, at the farm. They too were born born at Shelburne Farms in June, 2010. With the help of her grandfather, Ray, and the 4-H Green Mountain Teamsters, Analiese is training and showing her pair at fairs and competitions.

We welcome visitors to the farm to see the oxen, but ask that people call first to make an appointment or arrangements for ox-drawn cart and sleigh rides for up to four people.

This photo gallery is designed to give you a snap shot of the oxen as they’ve matured and an idea of the activities we do with them. Please scroll down to see the most recent pictures as they have been arranged in chronological order.

See a video with the oxen pulling the Conestoga Covered Wagon at the Green Mountain Draft Horse Field Days at Shelburne Farms in Shelburne, VT, June 30, 2011.

Joker, Ace, Jack and King, are Brown Swiss oxen, all born in April, 2004 at
Shelburne Farms in Shelburne, Vermont - located about an hour from the guesthouse.


Ray with Ace and Joker and Hannah with Jack and King at one year old.


Ray with Jack and King at a year old
with Hannah and grandkids Analiese
and Caleb Morvan in the cart.

Jack and King pulling the ox cart on
Frost Road where the farm is located.


Ray showed Ace and Joker at 17 months for the first time
at the Tunbridge Fair where they took
first place in Best Matched Team.


The boys at 27 months pulling the
oxcart as a four-ox hitch.
 



Rachel Gendler of New Jersey fell in love with gentle Joker at the 2006 Green Mountain Draft Horse Field Day held at Shelburne Farms.

 At three years old, Ace and Joker, pictured with LuLu Blau of Hanover, NH, entertained the crowd at Cedar Circle Farms 5th Annual Strawberry Festival in June, 2007

Ashley Heaney celebrated her 9th birthday with the oxen, pictured here with her friend, King.
Grandkids Analiese and Caleb lounge on their big buddies while waiting for the next event at the Tunbridge Fair.
 


Jackie Merriam showing Ace and Joker at 5 years old
 at the Tunbridge Fair, Tunbridge, VT.

Ray with Jack and King hitched to the forecart
with Analiese aboard.


Ray with Jack and King hooked to a sulky plow
with daughter-in-law Laurie Morvan aboard.

Jack and King pull the walk-behind
plow with Laurie Morvan at the helm.


A special sling supports the oxen
while being trimmed for shoeing by
Byron Cole of Wells River, VT.

Brian Hedding with Ace and Joker
traveling in a snowstorm.


Analiese Morvan with her new Brown
Swiss steers, Doc and Dan.

Analiese with Doc and Dan in winter.


Ace and Joker pull Hannah through the woods in the sleigh.

Hannah covered with a moose robe pulled by Ace and Joker stop for a photo.


Ray and Hannah with Ace and Joker hooked to the newly completed Conestoga Covered Wagon, July 2011.

Ray and Analiese Morvan with their teams as they make the maiden voyage with the newly completed Conestoga Wagon at the Roxbury Independence Parade, July 2, 2011

 
 

Don Spaulding and Jackie Merriam with Ace and Joker as they pull the Conestoga Wagon at the Roxbury Parade.
Hannah follows as the pooper-scooper.


The Conestoga wagon crew at the Roxbury Parade, l to r: Analiese, Ray, Hannah, Don Spaulding, Brian Hedding, Jackie and Fred Merriam and baby Daisy

Analiese, now known in the show ring as Sparky Morvan, with Doc and Dan in her first 4-H competition at the Windsor County Agricultural Fair, July 10, 2011.


Analiese with Doc and Dan with a red ribbon she won in the Fitting and Showmanship class at the Windsor County Agricultural Fair with her mother Laurie and grandmother Hannah looking on.

Analiese competing in a cart class with Doc and Dan at the Pomfret Pull at Suicide Six in Promfret, VT, July 31, 2011.


Ray and Don put up the canopy on the Conestoga Wagon at the Green Mountain Draft Horse Field Days event at Shelburne Farms, July 30, 2011.

Jack looking handsome at the
Green Mountain Draft Horse Field Days.


Ray with Jack and King as they pull the Conestoga Wagon for their first time at the Green Mountain Draft Horse Field Days.


We may add more photos from time to time....

 


 

      

 

 

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Revised: October 31, 2011