#OurLife: Be a Local for a Day

Stories from the Farm, 09.09.2020, Marlies Glatz

On the farm “Familienbauernhof Köss” in Egg, guests will find a farm holiday of their dreams. A picture-perfect scenery, for example. Large forests and lush meadows are characteristic for the Bregenz Forest. This is where the farm is nestled in undulating hills. Or a glimpse into real farm life. The family runs their farm with a great amount of passion and common sense. It goes without saying that the animals are part of the family. Above all, you’ll get the feeling that you can become part of this family.

 

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Mutter mit Kindern auf der Schaukel im Freien | © Urlaub am Bauernhof Vorarlberg / Daniel Gollner

#OurLife: Be a Local for a Day

Some people are longing for this their whole life: Turning their passion into their profession. For Pamela Schertler, it came naturally.  She grew up on her parents’ farm and in two different mountain cabins in Hittisau. As a child, she already knew that she wanted to become a farmer. She needed to take responsibility at a young age. And a sense of being needed was part of her life. These childhood memories had been at the heart of Pamela’s decision to continue with farming and accommodating guests once she took over the farm many years later. The only way to do great work is to love what you do. And the hosts at “Familienbauernhof Köss” really do! They are passionate and down-to-earth in their way of running the farm of 11 hectares in size. Plus, they host guests in three holiday apartments that they have furnished with great care.

Roman, the farmer, and Däta Dockwiese, the grandpa, coordinate the farming activities whereas Pamela is responsible for guests and family. She can be at home with her kids. The mother of three sees it as a gift that’s she doesn’t take for granted. Hosting guests is a highlight of her everyday life: “Our guests bring joy, interesting stories and a change to our farm. Guests are always welcome.”

 

She invites her guests to enjoy a friendly, informal atmosphere and feel at home. They can be part of the family’s daily life or help with the daily tasks in the barn. “I want to make my guests feel at home and enjoy their holidays. That’s my goal. It’s up to them whether they prefer joining in the daily feeding or relaxing in the hammock. Everyone can decide on his own”, the 38-year-old farmer points out. Especially the young guests like immersing themselves into farm life, taking care of cats, guinea pigs and friends or romping happily in nature. “Computer kids stay like this, also while they’re on holiday. But 95% of the families really appreciate and use our garden.”

 

Nine dairy cows are milked daily (unless they are on the alpine pastures). The milk is delivered to the local dairy that turns it into regional food products with great care. “We run our farm with common sense. We don’t use artificial fertilisers. We know our cows, each of them has a name. This is circular economy in practice.” This is also important for guests. In general, Pamela wishes that people appreciate the role of farmers more: “How would the iconic rural landscape of the Bregenz Forest look like if there was no agriculture? What we do is invaluable. But there must be some financial remuneration for it.” These are challenges for the future that must be met with creativity and a will to change.

 

The determined woman was head of the rural youth association “Landjugend” in Vorarlberg, the province she grew up in, for two years. She always knew that the village of Egg in the Bregenz Forest is her home. That’s where she wants to spend her life. “I have the feeling that everyone has the desire to go back to his or her roots at a certain point in life. Wherever the path may lead my kids in the future, they are at home here and they can come back at any time.” That’s also true for the guests who come here. And they follow this invitation with great pleasure, returning to the farm “Familienbauernhof Köss” for their holidays.

 

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