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Posted on Sun, Aug 18, 2013 : 12:50 p.m.

Dawn Farm celebrates 40th anniversary with jamboree

By Chelsea Hoedl

Dawn Farm will host its annual jamboree in celebration of recovery from alcoholism and drug addiction from 1 to 6 p.m. Sept. 8 on the non-profit’s 74-acre working farm, 6633 Stony Creek Road, Ypsilanti Township.


A clown walks by the tractor pulling the hayride during last year's jamboree.

The organization, which was founded in 1973, will also celebrate its 40th year providing the community with the support needed to recover from chemical dependency.

“This is our chance to celebrate both those who have recovered from alcohol or drug addiction and the organization and how it has evolved since its inception,” Dawn Farm Development Director Megan Rodgers said. “Two of the founders of the organization will be attending the event. Gary Archie is coming all the way from Colorado and Jack Scholtus is coming in from Traverse City."

Dawn Farm faculty, those who have benefited from the organization, family, friends and community members are invited to enjoy live music, a live and silent auction with goods and services donated by local businesses and individuals and a gift table with donated items sold at discount prices.

Local vendors including Pizza House and Blimpy Burger will sell food and donate a portion of their proceeds to Dawn Farm.

In addition, a children’s tent will offer arts and crafts, pony rides, hayrides, a chance to visit the animals and a large moon bounce obstacle course.

Admission is free and all proceeds made from the auction, gift table and gift shop go to Dawn Farm’s efforts to provide quality support and services to community members who need it, Rodgers said.

“This is the only public fundraiser we have to help those who are unable to afford their care,” Rodgers said. “Dawn Farm does not turn anyone away for lack of funds. In the last 5 to 10 years that has become more difficult because we are encountering more and more individuals who do not have the money to pay for the services they need. We rely on the generosity of corporations and individuals during this event and throughout the year.”

Rodgers said the event has brought out about 1,500 people for the day in past years and typically raises about $50,000, which is put toward helping individuals afford the many services provided by the facility.

In 2012, Dawn Farm provided residential services to 249 people, detox services to 1,130 people, detox outreach to 169 people, transitional housing to 329 people, outpatient services to 433 people, corrections services to 496 people, offered assistance to 107 teens and families as a part of the adolescent program and worked with 4,388 people as a part of their educational outreach program.

“Our goal is to assist alcoholics and addicts in recovery through the many programs we offer while identifying and removing barriers that prevent those in the recovery process from joining the community,” Rodgers said. “Within the last 20 years we’ve added several services based on the needs of the community.”

Between 2000 and 2003, three new programs and a new facility were added to meet the needs of the community. Dawn Farm Downtown, a secondary residential treatment facility, was opened and the outpatient, street outreach and adolescent programs were launched.

“This is going to be a great chance for the two founders who are coming to visit to see how Dawn Farm has changed,” Rodgers said. “It’s also a nice opportunity to partner with businesses and communities in a way we wouldn’t normally be able to.”

Chelsea Hoedl is an intern reporter for She can be reached at


Ann English

Mon, Aug 19, 2013 : 12:12 p.m.

Are you sure you meant to mention Blimpy Burger selling food at Dawn Farm? Reminds me of Bill Knapp's, having no location of their own, yet still selling their cakes at Meijer. I had no idea that Dawn Farm was a non-profit; I first heard of it through a former coworker, who was able to get and keep living in an apartment while working for Dawn Farm. He died of kidney cancer before the year 2000.

Michigan Man

Sun, Aug 18, 2013 : 5:07 p.m.

Great organization, fine community/civic and health leaders = Wish them God's blessing and great success moving forward!