Danny Dunlap & Annaliese Danckers
Danny and Annaliese taking their chickens for an evening walk. I think those girls might want some more mealworms!
I began my passion for farming back when I was living in Florida. I became aware of how poorly the animals being sold for meat in the supermarkets were treated which led me on a path of trying to live more sustainably. That path led me to Colorado, where I attended a farm to table based culinary school. I picked Boulder specifically for its vibrant community of small farms. Out of culinary school I worked for both Black Cat Farm as a harvest intern and Meadowlark Farm Dinners as a seasonal intern. Through these two jobs I was exposed to even more farmers in the county. My family acquired the property on which Bluebird Sky is located around this time in 2015. I spent the next several years conducting small homesteading level experiments in raising chickens and gardening while continuing to work as a livestock manager for McCauley Family Farm. In 2019, shortly before I met Annaliese, I officially started Bluebird Sky Farmstead and launched our farming operation. I was lucky to find such a great partner so quickly!
I’ve been a farmer in some capacity my whole life, thanks to my parents. They taught me to weed the garden, to take the compost out in snowy Cleveland winters, and to love harvesting veggies each Autumn. After college, I jumped back into farming at McDowell Farm School in Alabama because – if I learned one thing in school – it was that kids across America aren’t connected to the powers of food. MFS taught me how to farm, manage, and love every bit of hard work needed to grow and share food with others. Two years later, I wanted to experience a new ecosystem and found that opportunity at The Golden Hoof. During my year-long internship, I met Danny and was so intrigued that someone my age was starting their own farm! Turns out we have many dreams for the future in common so, once my internship ended, I moved over to Bluebird Sky Farmstead and got to work raising our own animals, growing vegetables, and building the soil. We’re learning and adapting with the land every day, and honestly, I couldn’t be happier.