Spanning 128 contiguous acres, the Home Winds property was acquired in the spring of 2015 in large part through a gift from longtime owner Betsy Michel.
The property, which had previously been owned and used by the St. Bernard’s School for boarding and farming, was sold to Michel's parents, Carl and Betsy Shirley, in 1965. For half a century, the family produced hay, raised chickens, cattle, pigs, goats and donkeys, and kept bees on the property. As a longtime friend and supporter of Gill St. Bernard’s, Michel wanted to “return” the farm to its original owners.
The property features several residential and agricultural buildings, fields and a large stocked pond. Short-term, the property will accommodate the school’s operations department and equipment, as well as allow for the expansion of Gill St. Bernard’s farm-to-table program, honoring the farming history of both Home Winds and the school. In the future, the property will also be used to expand many of the school’s academic programs, including those involving place-based learning. Gill is grateful to the Michel family and looks forward to incorporating Home Winds into the daily life of the school.