Metz Hart-Land Dairy of Rushford hosted a “Poses in the Pasture” event last June and opened up its farm to about 25 people who did yoga in the pasture, with part of the dairy herd as their audience. Another event is being planned for this summer.
SUBMITTED PHOTO
Metz Hart-Land Dairy of Rushford hosted a “Poses in the Pasture” event last June and opened up its farm to about 25 people who did yoga in the pasture, with part of the dairy herd as their audience. Another event is being planned for this summer. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Yoga participants typically don’t have to watch out for cow pies. But that was exactly the case last June, when Metz Hart-Land Dairy of Rushford held its first “Poses in the Pasture” event. Over two dozen participants practiced downward-facing dog while staring-straight-ahead bovines looked on. 

“We held Poses in the Pasture to help celebrate June Dairy Month last year,’” recalled Mariann Metz. “We were doing yoga in the pasture as the cows watched from the other side of the fence. They were a little big to be playing with.”

Local coffee shop Jessie Street Java brought coffee samples to try before the yoga began. Metz said after they were done with yoga, participants could try samples from local businesses, and the Metz family provided cheese samples to try, as well. She said everyone seemed to have a good time, and even though it’s not set in stone, the Metzes are planning on hosting another Poses in the Pasture event this coming June.

“The idea first started when the Winona Brewery used to have yoga in its parking lot,” Metz laughed. “My brother and wife invited us to come down and we had a good time. We talked to the yoga instructor, who’s a good friend of my brother, and we came up with the idea of doing yoga in the pasture.”

Those discussions started in the fall of 2016 and continued into the winter, until a schedule came together in April of last year. Metz said what started as a joke among friends finally came to fruition.

“There are people that do yoga with goats, so why can’t we do it with cows? “ Metz mused. “We’ve got pictures of the group doing yoga right out there in the pasture with the cows all gathered and watching us. They were pretty curious about what was happening.”

The Metz family had four generations participating in yoga. Mariann’s mom, daughter and grandson all took part. Participants were encouraged to go at their own pace and not try any of the poses they weren’t sure about completing successfully.

Metz said everyone seemed to have a good time and she felt the family was very successful in showing off what a working dairy farm was like.

“We probably had about 25 people show up,” Metz recalled. “We had a lot of them tell us that we needed to do an event like this again. It’s an idea for people of all ages. There were some older folks there and the instructor said just do what you’re comfortable with. The ground was at a slight incline, but we did try to find the flattest part of the pasture we could. Many of the poses involved more stretching and relaxation, anyway.”

Metz said the instructor brought a friend to the Poses in the Pasture event who had never been on a dairy farm before and really enjoyed herself.

The Metz family regularly opens up their operation for tours, showing people what really goes on at a working dairy operation. Metz said the Poses in the Pasture event was a unique opportunity to do just that.

“We’re hoping to do a little more educating with our Poses in the Pasture event this year,” she said. “There’s so much out there that’s just not true about 99 percent of all farms. We’re using events like Poses in the Pasture to show and tell folks about what really happens out here.”

For more information on Metz Hart-Land, visit http://metzhartland.com or call 507-864-2627.