Louis and Savery Rorimer have been bringing their organic fruits and vegetables to the North Union Farmers Market on Shaker Square since its inception in 1995. You’ll still find one or both of them there on Saturdays mornings, eager to talk about what they do at Snake Hill Farm, which consists of 150-plus acres of pastures, fields, gardens and woodlands in Geauga County.
The couple also sells eggs and certified organic beef from animals they raise and maple syrup tapped from their own trees. They greet regular customers like old friends with handshakes and hugs, and happily educate newcomers, explaining, for example, that their leafy mesclun mix (salad greens) will last up to two weeks because of how fresh it is.
The Rorimers, now in their 60s, knew nothing about farming when they started 15 years ago. Louis is an attorney, and he still goes to the office five days a week. Rorimer was an artist. This was to be a side project, but it gradually become the focus of their lives and Savery’s full-time occupation. Hoping to make a summer home, which had been in Louis’ family for generations, a productive property, the two threw themselves into work, reading books and hiring an expert who advised them to become a certified-organic operation.
“It just made sense to us,” Savery says. “We thought that food should not be full of chemicals.”
The Rorimers get help from a farm manager, seasonal workers, student interns and crews of volunteer family and friends. But coming to the market is something they like to do themselves.
“Saturdays are a social event for me,” says Savery. “It’s just a joy to be here. People thank us for what we do. It gives me such a sense of meaning and accomplishment.”