A Shortsville dairy farm hosts Rochester students for a tour and taught them different aspects of farming

SHORTSVILLE — Nearly 40 Rochester students had an opportunity to visit a local dairy farm after participating in a six-week contest promoting locally-sourced foods.

For most of the students, it was their first time not only on a dairy farm but on any farm at all.

Hal and Kerry Adams, owners of Black Brook Farm in Shortsville, welcomed students from Rochester City School District’s Henry Hudson School No. 28 to teach them about different aspects of operating a dairy farm, including calf care, how cows are milked and proper nutrition for cows. Students were even able to get up close to the calves to feed and pet them.

The school was awarded the dairy farm trip by American Dairy Association North East for its participation in a NY Thursdays farm to school contest held earlier this spring.

NY Thursdays is a school meals initiative, in cooperation with the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, that brings locally sourced and produced foods to students. Farm-fresh items served in participating New York schools on Thursdays include fruits, vegetables and dairy products — such as milk, cheese and yogurt — from New York state farms.

Black Brook Farm, which has 200 cows, has been in operation since the 1880s; and the Adamses, who took over the family farm in 1981, are fourth-generation farmers.