Cultural Crossroads of Minden will be introducing a new feature at The Farm – its nature trail.
Volunteers spent the day at The Farm Saturday cleaning up the four-acre lot in preparation for the nature trail’s debut as well as preparing for its annual Chickenstock Festival and Art on 80. Executive Director Chris Broussard says she is excited to introduce the trail as it will be a place to introduce the public to nature as its own piece of art as well as a place of peace.

Cadets from the Louisiana National Guard's Youth Challenge Program help with cleanup of The Farm Saturday in preparation for the Art on 80 fundraiser and Chickenstock, Cultural Crossroads' annual Spring Arts Festival. Cultural Crossroads is offering a new feature this year, a nature trail for nature lovers to enjoy art in nature. Bruce Franklin/Press-Herald
Cadets from the Louisiana National Guard’s Youth Challenge Program help with cleanup of The Farm Saturday in preparation for the Art on 80 fundraiser and Chickenstock, Cultural Crossroads’ annual Spring Arts Festival. Cultural Crossroads is offering a new feature this year, a nature trail for nature lovers to enjoy art in nature. Bruce Franklin/Press-Herald

“The nature trail is going to start at the movie screen,” she said. “It’s the other two acres of the property that’s undeveloped. It’s full of trees and native plants, so we’re going to highlight those trees, and they’ll feel like they’re in the forest because it’s so isolated back there.”

The trail will offer different stops along the way for nature lovers to just sit and enjoy Mother Nature.

“We’re going to try to build some other amenities out there that we’re going to keep a surprise,” she said.

Along the trail, people will pass a small cotton field, planted with rare brown cotton planted by Glenbrook School students.

A special feature of the nature trail will be doors that mark different places along the path, she said.

Cultural Crossroads Executive Director Chris Broussard and YCP cadets clean up around The Farm Saturday. Bruce Franklin/Press-Herald
Cultural Crossroads Executive Director Chris Broussard and YCP cadets clean up around The Farm Saturday. Bruce Franklin/Press-Herald

“They’ll be pieces of art where we’re going to recruit locals to paint, and they can either paint them in teams or as individuals,” she said. “Our suggestion would be that they pick some theme that celebrates art in nature. We’re going to offer some artists a door, but we’re hoping the community can offer an upcycled door as well.”

The deadline to turn in the completed pieces will be Sunday, April 10. She says they will begin installing the doors that day.

“Anybody can turn in a painted door any day before the deadline,” she said.

The doors can have a special message on them and Broussard says if they wish, they can decorate around the doors on the trail.

“We’ll give them an opportunity when they drop off their door to decorate around it,” she said. “The whole idea of the doors is the welcome everyone to the great outdoors, and at the same time, offer them inspirational messages people can read along the way.”

During the weekend of Chickenstock, the Ozark Society will camp out the entire weekend and cook over an open pit. They will conduct demonstrations to show people how to cook over an open pit, Broussard said.

“That’ll be part of the nature trail too,” she said. “I’ve done a lot of reading about how our children are not experiencing nature because too many of them are spending their time indoors. Because of that, we don’t have enough kids that are in love with nature or in love with all those things enough to want to save it. If we can introduce them to nature, then maybe some of the benefits of that will be more respect for the outdoors.”

The Farm is considered a Food Forest as it offers several different types of fruit trees and small crops that are or will be planted, she said.

Art on 80 is Saturday, April 9, and Chickenstock will be open to the public Saturday, April 16. The week of April 11-15, the fourth grade students of Webster Parish will be bussed in for Kids Day at The Farm.

For more information the nature trail and the door art project, contact Broussard at 393-5991 or ghostchicken54@gmail.com. For information on Art on 80, contact Rachel Harrington at 773-7268 or rlw1977@gmail.com. For information on Chickenstock, contact Julie Vogel at 286-9472 or jvogel99@yahoo.com.

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