Our farm name draws from the fact that we are native Kansans. Ad Astra comes from the Kansas state motto, “Ad Astra Per Aspera…” and translates to mean, “To the Stars.” In honor of this, we name all the alpacas born here after stars, constellations, or planets.
We live just outside the city limits of Baldwin City, Kansas, on the farm where Claudia grew up. The farm used to be a dairy and we remodeled it to be suitable for alpaca ranching. We built a new barn where the old milk house stood, and put a small shop inside that features alpaca products. We are constantly striving to learn more about alpacas and especially their fiber. We’ve attended seminars and shows, and read lots of books and articles that have all really helped us. Day to day interaction with the alpacas has provided us with some valuable hands-on experience, too. Alpacas are fascinating animals, and there is much to learn about them, but that’s all part of the joy of owning them.
Our alpacas have taught us some things, too. We have learned to be calmer and more patient, and we can actually feel ourselves relaxing and letting tensions go when we are around them. We find a quiet peacefulness in just sitting out in the pasture or barn with them.
Having a curious cria come up and give us a kiss is one of the most satisfying feelings there is!
One of our goals is to constantly improve the quality of our herd and the fiber of each successive generation. Another important goal for us is to raise calm, friendly alpacas. By using Camelidynamic techniques, we are achieving that goal, too. We have heard from visitors that our alpacas are friendly and approachable.
Our Alpacas have traveled to the summer reading program in town, to visit several 4-H groups in a neighboring town, and have even visited the local assisted-living center. We went to the Baldwin City Care Center. Some of the residents couldn’t come outside to see the alpacas, so we took one in to them. He went down all the corridors and into rooms to greet the folks, just like he was used to doing this sort of thing all the time. The entire second grade from the school came to visit, since they were studying a unit on South America. Old and young alike have enjoyed stroking these gentle animals, and the alpacas have enjoyed the treats they received from everyone!
We are members of several local and national alpaca organizations: Alpaca Registry Inc, Alpaca Owners and Breeders Association, Midwest Alpaca Farms, Kaw Valley Farm Tours, United Alpaca Family Farms, and Cottage Industry Alpaca Breeders Association. More information on all these organizations can be found on our Farm Partners page.
We get great satisfaction talking about and showing our alpacas to farm visitors. We invite you to come see why we love our animals and the relaxed “alpaca lifestyle” so much. Stop by any time…we’ll be glad to meet you!