Sagamore Hills, Ohio – By Felicia Naoum
“God answered my prayers,” said Marilyn Ann Petrilli owner of Klassy Kids Farm (KKF) in Sagamore Hills, Ohio. KKF is a soon-to-be open farm consisting primarily of goats and donkeys. KKF is operated by volunteers. The mission is to provide an atmosphere of therapeutic pet therapy for all individuals.
The road traveled to KKF was interminable, but well worth it. Petrilli spent 31 years as a dedicated employee of the Cuyahoga County Board of Developmental Disabilities (CCBDD) before retiring. Retirement did not stop Petrilli from providing music programs, field trips and staying connected to the county board by teaching art classes through a vendor. Along with teaching classes, Petrilli kept busy with her pet goat. Unfortunately, she had to board the goat. She was able to find a mother and daughter donkey in Chesterland. Petrilli explains that it is imperative to keep goats in a herd or they become depressed.
While working, she brought one of her pet goats, Lady Godiva, to visit her clients and co-workers. Lady Godiva has certainly been through a lot as another goat bit her ear off. This act resulted in a near death experience for Godiva. Owner, Petrilli, nursed Godiva back to health by raising Godiva in her home. Dr. Randall Alger, DVM of Mantua also made visits to Petrilli’s home to care for Godiva. Despite these hardships, Godiva persevered through multiple surgeries. Petrilli shared how the goats are very amusing, including Godiva. It’s easy to understand why everyone loved meeting Lady Godiva at the CCBDD; she is strong, and still amusing.
Eventually, this job ended due to an increased need for clients to be more involved in the community. Petrilli knew the benefits of pet therapy. This need transformed into the creation of KKF. Petrilli‘s willingness didn’t stop there. She then decided to take a leap of faith as she purchased an old farm house that was built in 1893 and is 2.5 acres. Petrilli always wanted farm animals. Purchasing this farm house put her on the pathway to fulfilling one of her dreams. Her son John Petrilli is her right hand man and is enrolled in a national certified program for managing non-profits.
A plethora of faith, prayers and dreams later KKF has been finalized as a non-profit business. Patrelli said, “It took many years; God has provided.”
KKF plans to open to the public at the end of April or beginning of May this year. The farm will include a bridge that is currently being made. This bridge is being replicated from the classic story: “Three Billy Goats Gruff.”
Petrilli emphasized that her farm is for everyone. You do not have to have a disability to benefit from visiting KKF. “People are so stressed out; when you’re with animals you forget about that, ” said Petrilli.
Stay on the lookout for the launch of KKF this year. That way, you can meet the animals – feed them grains and hay – and relax!
Appointments scheduled in advance to visit KKF are appreciated. There will be a minimal fee to enter the farm. This fee equates to a donation. Also, the farm will be wheelchair accessible.
If you would like to donate $5 or $10 it would go a long way to feeding the animals and help provide a shelter or share this article. https://www.gofundme.com/9cpzupyc