Summer Update

The summer started out with a bang, we have had groups volunteering to help on the farm each weekend. The Navy Chiefs have been out every Saturday to help with finishing the Kids Rank club houses as well as clearing the south end of brush and dead trees. We had a group from US Cellular to help with the weeding of the gardens, clearing the south end of brush and the planting of 30 pine trees(see photos). Abbott had two separate volunteer groups out to help maintain our gardens and get the farm ready for the summer sessions. We Thank all the volunteers who help us get the work done, the farm depends on you and so do our veterans, any groups wishing to join our army of volunteers contact us and get on the schedule.
The Farmers Market in Wadsworth began July 15th and goes on through September 30th so come pay us a visit.(located at the village hall on Wadsworth Road) We will be selling our produce as well as crafts made by the kids from Kids Rank,all proceeds go to keeping our farm open for those who need us.
A new pond has been built as a project for an Eagle Scout, a special “Thank You” goes to Bruce Diederich with Waukegan Roofing for donating the liner to complete the pond; this will enhance our bird yard and give our duck a place to cool off, we plan on getting Sally a few more pond mates.
We have added a new horse to our program. This new addition has been donated by a veteran family who gives us their full support and sees the need for our horse program. Thank You Very Much in trusting us with the care of your fantastic horse, she will live  a happy life on the farm and will as all our animals become part of the family.
The Rose Program has been doing Fantastic, our Ladies have been warming the hearts of those in the hospital at the V.A. Each Sunday they vase up the roses and with smiles on there faces  greet the waiting patients, the only visitors some get are our ladies on Sunday. We would like to have more groups participate in our delivery program, it warms the hearts of those involved.The new roses donated for the garden are doing well and provide many fresh blooms for Sunday, donations of roses for the garden are always needed.

July brought us a busy schedule as well, the Farmers Market began, the 23rd was our Poker Run sponsored by the VFW Riders Group from Post 1865 in Kenosha, which was a a lot of fun, thanks to everyone who participated and rode out and in the rain with us.

Thank You to all those groups and corporate sponsors who help us serve our Veterans, Active Military and there families in any way we can, with out your support our mission would take longer to complete!

Spring 2016 Has Arrived!

Winter is over! The Freedom Farm is back to regular hours!

Season Six promises to be a very busy year for the Farm. We started off by reigniting our Rose Program, delivering roses to our heroes at the VA (see the Rose Program page for pics from the Valentines Day deliveries.) Our volunteer core will begin spring clean-up starting with the Navy Chiefs on March 25th and continuing once each month throughout the summer season. Along with the Chiefs, the recruits from RTC will also be out once a month to donate time to help us maintain the farm and care for our animals. U.S. Cellular is bringing out a group of employees to help with the planting of our gardens on May 11th.They will be on the farm for the entire day, and we should be able to complete our planting at this time.

We have had a new group extend their arms to help us continue our mission. The VFW Riders from Kenosha Wisconsin is stepping up to raise funds by doing a Poker Run on July 23 (see flyers below). This group of heroes donated our new flags for the season (see pic at the end of this paragraph) and became our first $100.00 corporate members. We were also invited to speak at the VFW District Council Meeting. This support will go a long way in helping our farms as they spread throughout the country.


New flags for the 2016 season

We have been fortunate to partner with JAIDA Design Corp. a L3C company that intends to employ veterans and special needs individuals to produce the product line. This partnership will give the Freedom Farm a firm funding source with which to carry out its mission, helping veterans and our military & families in any way we can. Look for the JAIDA line in stores in the near future!

The Freedom Farm has gone through many growing pains the past five years. We have experienced turnover in our volunteers and Board of Directors, and this is to be expected in an all-volunteer organization. There is a true vision and plan for the growth of the farm, and we will stay the course. We take pride in the fact that we have spent every donation for our veterans and their families.

All of us who work to make the Freedom Farm operate donate their time – we have no payroll. These are special people, and we do it because we realize that we owe everything to these heroes, and that the highest honor a person can possess is to be a called a veteran. No vote or any amount of money can buy you that honor, each must decide to step up and serve. The staff and volunteers at the Freedom Farm respect and honor these brave men and women, and help them and their families in any way we can..

Stop by and pay us a visit or see us at the Wadsworth Farmers Market every Friday throughout the summer,

“If we don’t try, we don’t do.”


John Ress


2016 Poker run flyer Bike Nite 2016

Winter Schedule

Winter is a slow time on the farm, particularly after the start of the new year.  Consequently, we’re reducing our normal schedule to 3 days a week – Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday from January to the end of March, sunup to sundown.  If you’d like to visit on the other days of the week, call first to let me know, and I’ll arrange a time to meet you.

We’ll continue to help our veterans and families off the farm whenever there’s a need, too.

Stay safe, stay well, and stay warm.  As always, to all our vets and their families, thank you for your service.


p. 224-399-7464
c. 847-508-6070

Flag Dedication

We wanted to share this from Gibbie Buchholtz, thank you for such a nice write up!

On Monday December 7,2015 at noon on Pearl Harbor Day a new flag & flag pole were dedicated at The Freedom Farm for Vets at 13155 West Hart Street in Wadsworth, Illinois.

The flag & flag pole are a gift from The Knight’s Of Columbus At Our Lady Of Humility Church In Beach Park, led by member Richard McFarlin, Master Sergeant, United States Army Retired.

Freedom Farm is a place for Veteran’s who suffer post-traumatic stress disorder. Freedom Farm was founded by John Ress.  John & his lovely wife Jody said “the farm offers a hands-on opportunity in running a farm, which can be done in solitude, with animals or in the company of other Vet’s who have similar experiences.

Also in attendance were Freedom Farm Treasurer Cassandra Mason, Gold Star Dad Kirk Morris and Gold Star Dad Deacon Robert Ochsner.

Anyone who is interested in donating can do so on the web site, Donations can also be made by check or money order and sent to America United Bank And Company, 36044 N. Brookside Drive, Gurnee, Illinois 60031. Checks can be made payable to Freedom Farm For Vets.