New heating system for Lewis Oliver Farm Animal Sanctuary

People by: Chrissy Ruggeri, February 18, 2023

Huntington Town Councilman Salvatore Ferro, Supervisor Ed Smyth and barn manager Lorena Ericksen at Lewis Oliver Farm in Northport Village. Photo courtesy the Town of Huntington.

Huntington Town Councilman Salvatore Ferro joined efforts with Suffolk County Legislator Stephanie Bontempi to bring a new heating system to Lewis Oliver Farm in Northport.

The historic community landmark serves as a sanctuary and home to a group of rescued farm animals, including goats, sheep, turkeys, Annabelle the cow, and more. The farm, which dates back to the mid-1800s, currently relies on plug-in heaters for the winter. Immediately after hearing about the potential plug-in heating fire hazard, Councilman Ferro reached out to Legislator Bontempi to collaborate on improving the safety conditions at the farm.

“Lewis Oliver Farm has been a special place to so many people for generations. I wanted to take preventative steps in making sure the dedicated staff and animals have safe working and living conditions,” Councilman Ferro said.

The installation process of a new heating system is underway with the duct work installation already completed. “I am so excited that this work has begun so quickly, as we still have some cold months ahead,” Legislator Bontempi said of the effort.

Barn manager and long-time farm volunteer Lorene Eriksen told the Journal that she’s grateful for the Town of Huntington and Suffolk County’s support. “A new heating system means we no longer have to worry about the pipes freezing and bursting. Our volunteers will have a safe, heated area to warm up in between feeding, watering and cleaning up after our animals,” she said, adding that a properly heated indoor area will allow farm volunteers to utilize the space year-round, and host on-site fundraising events and board meetings.

“Thank you to Councilman Ferro, Legislator Bontempi and everyone else at the Town and County for getting the heating system in place for us so that we may continue to comfortably and safely provide individualized, lifelong care for our animal residents, and help keep this community treasure going for generations of families to come,” Eriksen said.

Suffolk County Legislator Stephanie Bontempi feeding a goat at Lewis Oliver Farm. Photo courtesy the Town of Huntington.