Named for a gnarly curve in Sangersville Road, Horseshoe Bend farm overlooks a quaint pond and the gorgeous skyline of Bridgewater, Virginia. Farmers Harry and Michelle Showalter both grew up on Shenandoah Valley farms and bought their current property in 1993, where they set to work raising chicken, corn, and cattle. Michelle helps with general inspections of the property and birds while Harry makes sure the water, feed, and ventilation systems are all working properly. The Showalter kids Isaac and Sylvia help check on the birds throughout the day and chase the chickens back into the houses each evening, while their older sister Susanna works at a local farmer’s market. Sylvia especially likes mowing the property. Harry switched to SVO because he likes the model, in particular the farmer owning the birds. SVO’s relaxed density allows him to earn more money growing 30% fewer birds. He still has to adhere to certain standards and regulations, but they’re ones he agrees with -- ones that are good for the birds, the planet, and the customers.  Harry says it’s like “turning back time” to the farming of the 50s and 60s. We’re okay with that. In their spare time, the family enjoys hunting. They also spend a week at Nag’s Head each summer; Harry is grateful SVO accommodates their schedule to allow for a week-long vacation. 

Lynda Bostrom